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International MA Student Reactions to Blended Learning Delivery of ‘EAP Course Design & Materials Development’ 1.Aims of blended learning delivery 2.Description.

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Presentation on theme: "International MA Student Reactions to Blended Learning Delivery of ‘EAP Course Design & Materials Development’ 1.Aims of blended learning delivery 2.Description."— Presentation transcript:

1 International MA Student Reactions to Blended Learning Delivery of ‘EAP Course Design & Materials Development’ 1.Aims of blended learning delivery 2.Description of facilities 3.First reactions to e-learning 4.What worked & what didn’t? 5.Evaluation of delivery mode 6.Coping with the consequences Angie Phillip, February 2004

2 1.Aims of Blended Learning Delivery for Students on Course Design module a)Make e-resources (both online and local) available to support both on and off-line course design b)Facilitate collaborative learning c)Encourage reflection - provide experience as well as theory in order for students to evaluate the delivery mode. Students Grp students: 4 females, 3 males from a range of countries Students Grp students: 1 female, 5 males from a range of countries

3 2. Description of Facilities

4 3. First reactions to e-learning Although students saw some advantages, they all expressed doubts. It did not matter whether the students were web-skilled with some experience of using the net for teaching, or whether they were novices. For example: ‘…most of my students are fed up our traditional teaching delivery. They like us teachers to bring them something new and interesting, especially when they begin to be attracted to computers….’ [but] ‘..to prepare a computer assisted teaching plan will cost me four times more than to prepare a chalk + blackboard teaching plan though I am familiar with the software’.. ‘..to be honest…. I … doubted the effectiveness of the lesson’ & ‘I use computers a lot, I have not yet come to a conclusion whether learning should not take place in the classrooms but in front of emotionless computers. It might save a lot of time and energy but I am not persuaded whether it is the right choice.’

5 4. What worked? YES ( ) Resources Word readability tools Simple graphics – cut & paste from net Multilingual dictionaries Online E-Learning help Course notes Netscape Composer Collaborative Learning Discussion area excellentl Reflection on Blended Learning Experience Enthusiastic response YES ( ) Resources Word readability tools Simple graphics – cut & paste from net Multilingual dictionaries Online E-Learning help Course notes Netscape Composer Collaborative Learning Discussion area excellentl Reflection on Blended Learning Experience Enthusiastic response NO (X) Resources Word Track changes – no time & different versions of Word English-English dictionaries Collaborative Learning No use of student homepages or file- sharing (criticism of course design not students) NO (X) Resources Word Track changes – no time & different versions of Word English-English dictionaries Collaborative Learning No use of student homepages or file- sharing (criticism of course design not students)

6 5. Evaluation of delivery mode Methods: webCT discussion board & paper questionnaire 1)Usfulness of WebCT Course Unanimous agreement on its usefulness e.g. ‘WebCT offers us a space where we can share opinions and information;’ ‘WebCt is a family talk, I enjjoe it so much, I don’t worry about making mistakes. I enjoy the freedom of studying and exchanging.’ & ‘I learn about self…’ 2)Workload All agreed that the workload was too great e.g. ‘It is big but it has to be..’ & ‘Sometimes we were faced with piles of articles.’ 3)Best thing about the course Typical of both groups: ‘extremely useful and practical,…peer reading, checking each others’ work, new ideas, making us think and argue, give us time to express our opinion, teacher listening to us. 4)Worst thing & suggestions for improvement Generally agreed: ‘too much homework for the course’ 5)Any other comments Extremely positive e.g. ‘it opens a new face of learning.’

7 6. Coping with the Consequences Consequences Time taken during course to explore new activities; Students read more articles than usual because of availability Coverage of both technical skills & course content took time that was not allocated Assignment time – longer than anticipated New transferable skill to find academic articles on net – much appreciated Ongoing learning of web-design by most students both for materials and personal use because it was found to be enjoyable & satisfying Consequences Time taken during course to explore new activities; Students read more articles than usual because of availability Coverage of both technical skills & course content took time that was not allocated Assignment time – longer than anticipated New transferable skill to find academic articles on net – much appreciated Ongoing learning of web-design by most students both for materials and personal use because it was found to be enjoyable & satisfying Questions raised 1.During the course re: online course design: how can the time be found to provide technical skills as well as content? 2.After the course: how can time be found to give students skills & tools to use virtual environments for their own students back in their own place? Is it appropriate to do this in a conventional MA Applied Linguistics course? 3. Many students became ‘addicted’ to developing their skills in online course design with the result that assignments for other courses were relatively neglected. How can we prevent this happening? Questions raised 1.During the course re: online course design: how can the time be found to provide technical skills as well as content? 2.After the course: how can time be found to give students skills & tools to use virtual environments for their own students back in their own place? Is it appropriate to do this in a conventional MA Applied Linguistics course? 3. Many students became ‘addicted’ to developing their skills in online course design with the result that assignments for other courses were relatively neglected. How can we prevent this happening?

8 List of urls used as online resources Cambridge Dictionaries Online – Free Translator - E-Learning & Online Course Development Language Learning & Technology - A useful article: Meskill et al 2002 Expert and Novice Teachers Talking Technology: Precepts, Concepts and Misconcepts Language Learning & Technology Vol 6 no 3 pp 46-57Expert and Novice Teachers Talking Technology: Precepts, Concepts and Misconcepts MA Reactions to Blended Learning – Angie Phillip, February 2004


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