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WHAT IS BLENDED LEARNING?  Blended learning refers to courses that combine face-to- face classroom instruction with online learning  It is also referred.

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Presentation on theme: "WHAT IS BLENDED LEARNING?  Blended learning refers to courses that combine face-to- face classroom instruction with online learning  It is also referred."— Presentation transcript:

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2 WHAT IS BLENDED LEARNING?  Blended learning refers to courses that combine face-to- face classroom instruction with online learning  It is also referred to as a form of enhanced classroom online instruction  Also referred to as mixed mode learning or hybrid learning  Blended learning is not simply “bolted on” to an existing face-to-face learning programme but constitutes a redesign of the teaching and learning relationship

3 WHY BLENDED LEARNING?  Fully on-line environment VS face-to-face interaction. Best of both worlds  Blended learning offers a great learning opportunity for lecturers  Lecturers not very amenable to change. Blended learning offers them an opportunity to keep up with the advancements in education in a non- threatening manner by still allowing them that familiar face-to-face interaction (De Zure 2002).  (Broad et al. 2000) argue that limited research has been done into blended learning in undergraduate studies -recommend that serious examination of the students’ experiences of the blended learning.  Blended learning also brings new operational benefits to the institution

4 RATIONALE FOR THIS STUDY  HEQF call for curriculum transformation, the Durban University of Technology (DUT) initiated a curriculum renewal project identifying e-learning as one of it’s main strategic goals and objectives As part of this curriculum renewal project, the DUT set out objectives regarding the enhancement of teaching, learning and assessment for alignment with the HEQF. The objectives significant to this study are as follows: To create a student-centred teaching and learning environment built around the notion of ‘learning how to learn.’ Apply a diversity of teaching strategies in delivering academic programmes or modules Linked to the idea that students as lifelong learners need to take responsibility for their own learning, promote and support e- learning or blended learning in academic programmes

5 PURPOSE OF THIS STUDY  To investigate the impact of integrating a face-to-face and an online teaching approach in Accounting Education for undergraduate student teachers  The intention was not just to build technical skills but to extend and enrich educational experiences across the curriculum. Hence the intention was not to simply offer e-learning as an educational extra, but rather to incorporate my everyday educational practices in a meaningful way using blended learning.

6 CONTEXT OF THIS STUDY o Pioneers online training for lecturers- Blackboard o School of Education Initiative-WEB CT and Life Skills

7 PROCEDURE –REDESIGNING THE TEACHING AND LEARNING PROCESS Individual activities Multiple choice questions Activities reinforcing Accounting procedures, skills and online exercises Participative co-operative activities Tutorial exercises and answers Past examination papers with model answers Articles for discussion using the discussion tool General- study guides, module descriptors Safe Assignment-check for plagirism

8 RESEARCH DESIGN AND METHODOLOGY o Profile of respondents-purposeful sampling-55 4 th year Accounting Education student teachers-exposed to a blended learning environment for 18 months o Instrument- questionnaire o Pilot study- 5 people-check questionnaire for ambiguity and confusion o Systematic scaling technique-Likert Scale

9 RESULTS OF THE STUDY 84% of the sample indicated that blended learning had improved their performance in Accounting Education 76% indicated that blended learning had motivated them to learn 71% agreed that blended learning increased their independence in the learning process 87% strongly agreed that blended learning had assisted them in acquiring a deeper understanding of Accounting Education concepts and procedures 95% of the students was effective in that it provided them with additional learning material that was readily available through hyperlinks especially for discussion and assignments 90.9% were in agreement that the immediate feedback on online assessments motivated them to complete the assessments and progress through the levels 67.2% responded positively that blended learning allowed more interaction with the lecturer than in face-to-face lecture based sessions

10 RESULTS OF STUDY CONTINUED 84% of the students were convinced that blended learning promoted discussion with other students Finally % of the total sample were in agreement that blended learning made their learning more convenient as it gave them more flexibility

11 COMMENTS FROM STUDENTS Blackboard has really assisted me in improving my performance but access to the computer labs is a problem Sometimes the computers are offline and we have to submit an assignment or do research and this becomes a problem Sometimes when we use the weblinks on the online classroom that is linked to videoclips, we cannot use this as there is no speakers in the computer labs When assignments are due or we are going to write tests, there are not enough computers for all the students Sometimes we have difficulty using the safe assignment tool and endnote as we have not had training in this I really like blackboard because I can do the tutorial exercises and get the answers to compare immediately, I do not have to wait for the lecturer It is convenient because we can send the lecturer messages if we have a problem and she can discuss this with us online especially before a test I am happy because I do not live on campus but I can still discuss things with the lecturer and other students and I have information. Before I had to come to the campus to get the information

12 Discussion and Conclusions The results indicate that blended learning has contributed to an improvement in student’s performance in Accounting education and were thus motivated to learn This is in keeping with studies by (Ford 1992) who said that motivated students are characterised by their greater involvement in the class subject and by greater perseverance in carrying out assignments. The researcher is assuming that if students’ performance has improved, then maybe their motivation to learn Accounting Education will also increase. However there is no conclusive evidence from the results that this will necessarily occur. However one can be hopeful. Similarly, (Cooner 2010) is of the opinion that blended learning improves students’ learning experience in developing their capacity for reflection by providing them with a higher level of independence in the learning process. This study provides the results that blended learning increased students’ independence in the learning process. This is very significant in the sense that it could assist students in determining their own learning goals and plans, stay on task, track their own progress and build on successes and adjust to failures. These skills can be used throughout a lifetime to participate in a learning society.

13 DISCUSSION AND CONCLUSIONS Perhaps more significant is the contribution from studies undertaken by (Meyer 2003) who states that a blended learning environment provides a platform where students can confront questionable ideas and faulty thinking in more objective and reflective ways than might be possible in a totally face-to- face learning environment. Maybe by acquiring a deeper understanding of the concepts and procedures in Accounting Education, students will be able to apply this to real world situations. This will further enhance knowledge deepening and increase the ability of the students to add value to society and the economy. Studies by (Garrison and Anderson 2003) agree with these findings that blended learning has the capabilities to facilitate the open communication and limitless access to information on the internet thus providing for free and open dialogue, critical debate, negotiation and agreement-the hallmark of higher education. Blended learning allows students to access a range of quality hardware and software. The results of this study will contribute further to the body of knowledge that exists on the wealth of information that is available online. Hopefully the resources available online in the blended learning environment will equip the Accounting Education students with the capabilities of taking up new technologies so as to support their professional development. (Harding et al.2005) also agrees that increased flexibility and access to learning are the most commonly cited reasons for blended learning. The convenience and the ease of adopting blended learning is heightened by the results of this question. Students are consistently on their cellphones and with new advances in technology they are able to access their electronic classrooms on the phones which makes it more convenient especially if they live off campus and have no internet access. Also the time constraints of a purely contact lecture session is absent in a blended environment as students can be flexible in their learning. There is no pressure to get through a set of work in a fixed time. While some of the comments are related to issues that have been discussed above, there are areas of concern that need to be addressed. Students have indicated that inadequate facilities have hampered their ability to use the online classroom to its full potential thus disadvantaging them. These concerns and issues have been raised with the relevant departments responsible for them and measures are being put in place to address them

14 DISCUSSION AND CONCLUSIONS Traditional educational practices despite its merits and advantages cannot provide students with feedback at the pace that online assessments do. This prompts students to attempt more of the assessments and in so doing the student is engaging with the content and acquiring not only content knowledge but technological capabilities. Hopefully this encouraging result will empower more lecturers in the School of Education to equip themselves to be prepared to provide technology- supported learning opportunities for their students so that they can teach the necessary subject matter content through interactive computer simulations, digital and open educational resources which are only a few of the resources that will enable lecturers to provide previously unimaginable opportunities for conceptual understanding.. (Garrison and Kanuka 2004) support these results by offering that the combination of face-to-face and online learning can result in a transformative learning experience for students. This is because students can benefit from being connected to a learning community regardless of whether they are apart or together. Capturing ideas in a variety of ways to share with others for reflection, review and questioning leads to ‘asynchronous collaboration’ which means working together at the same time. Blended learning provides this space for the student to share ideas and create a community of practice.

15 AREAS OF CONCERN Whilst this study has shown the positive benefit of using blended learning in Accounting Education, students have cited areas of concern especially the issue of inadequate facilities. This concern has been raised with the departments concerned and measures are being put into place to address this concern Another problem is the use of the safe assignment tool and end note which I will address in the training of the students FINAL COMMENT Blended learning has opened a whole new world for myself and my students. We still have a lot to learn with regard to the technology and its implications in education. We need to move beyond Blackboard but we are taking it step at a time Not only has it contributed to my development as a teacher educator but it has also contributed to my development as a lifelong learner

16 THANK YOU ANITA HIRALAAL SCHOOL OF EDUCATION DURBAN UNIVERSITY OF TECHNOLOGY


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