Internet Supported Distance Learning Brian Mulligan IT Sligo, September 2003.
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Internet Supported Distance Learning Brian Mulligan IT Sligo, September 2003
Learning Theories Behaviorism: Based on observable changes in behavior. Behaviorism focuses on a new behavioral pattern being repeated until it becomes automatic. Cognitivism: Based on the thought process behind the behavior. Changes in behavior are observed, and used as indicators as to what is happening inside the learner's mind. Constructivism: Based on the premise that we all construct our own perspective of the world, through individual experiences and schema. Constructivism focuses on preparing the learner to problem solve in ambiguous situations.
The Technologies Multimedia/CBT Electronic Communication Assessment Management of Information We can look at these in reference to the theories we have mentioned.
Multimedia/CBT Interactive computer based materials. Must make the student think Must assess and react to their understanding Good CBT is effective Very expensive to produce Unrealistic to produce in-house CBT can be used immediately for ‘high- volume’ topics and works. maths, stats, science, computing etc Not widely available for the lower-volume problem subjects (SQC, accounting?)
Electronic Communication Distribution of learning materials Text, multimedia, video (via web pages or email) When does paper have and advantage over computer based media? Synchronous communication Chat (text, voice, video, whiteboard) Video conferencing / lectures Asynchronous communication Email, group email, bulletin boards Mostly used in distance learning and flexible learning, but also in full time campus based courses. Very successful in the humanities, but not as yet in Engineering.
Assessment Automated Objective Testing (CAA) Submission of Assignments Feedback CAA is a powerful tool for increasing attendance, attention and workrates. Also useful in monitoring independent learning – possibly crucial. Management of tests, students and student groups, and collection and sharing of test results are key issues in CAA. Probably more important than creating questions and tests.
Management of Information Virtual Learning Environments (e.g. WebCT) Allows the lecturer easily manage learning resources and students using the Internet Give student easy access to learning resources. Keeps all resources and communication from a course separate from other work. Usually include: individual communication, group communication, access to learning materials, management of assignments, objective testing, monitoring of student activity, storage of assessment marks Ideally needs to also to be able to log information generated by 3 rd party learning resources (not yet)
Traditional Teaching Methods Consider these in the light of the learning theories. Lecture Tutorial Notes and Books Assignment Laboratory Group work Project Written Assessment Multiple choice test.
Two ‘case studies’ Brian Mulligan’s Independent Learning Resources in Microsoft Frontpage (web page creation) A cost effective ‘electronic seminar’ Goodyear (1995/1996)
Microsoft FrontPage Independent Learning Resources in Microsoft Frontpage (web page creation) www.itsligo.ie/staff/bmulligan
Electronic Seminar Students given a series of readings. Students posted a synopsis of one reading to a bulletin board (computer conferencing) Students read some synopses and engaged in an online discussion for 3 weeks. Students then submitted: Summaries of key ideas discussed in the conferences. Short reflection on participating in the conference Grades for fellow students, including the criteria used for grading. Goodyear, P (1995/1996) Asynchronous Peer Interaction in Distance Education: The Evolution of Goals, Practices and Technology, Training Research Journal (1), 71 - 102
What is available to us. Limited college visit. (lectures and labs) Books, notes and web pages White boarding (possibly video conferencing) Synchronous discussion (chat) Asynchronous discussion (bulletin boards) Limited group work Multiple choice tests Electronically submitted assignments Final examinations
What we need to do now. think about how you might teach your subject. How much face to face time you’d like with the students at start of the course. Discuss each other’s teaching ideas. Think more on how you might teach and on possible learning exercises. Creation of resources for your course (eg. web pages from scratch and from existing documents) Use of WebCT to interact with your students.