Commenced in January 2007
Frequency: Monthly
Edition: International
Paper Count: 36

Blended Learning Related Abstracts

36 The Impact of Blended Learning on Developing the students' Writing Skills and the Perception of Instructors and Students: Hawassa University in Focus

Authors: Mulu G. Gencha, Gebremedhin Simon, Menna Olango

Abstract:

This study was conducted at Hawassa University (HwU) in the Southern Nation Nationalities Peoples Regional State (SNNPRS) of Ethiopia. The prime concern of this study was to examine the writing performances of experimental and control group students, perception of experimental group students, and subject instructors. The course was blended learning (BL). Blended learning is a hybrid of classroom and on-line learning. Participants were eighty students from the School of Computer Science. Forty students attended the BL delivery involved using Face-to-Face (FTF) and campus-based online instruction. All instructors, fifty, of School of Language and Communication Studies along with 10 FGD members participated in the study. The experimental group went to the computer lab two times a week for four months, March-June, 2012, using the local area network (LAN), and software (MOODLE) writing program. On the other hand, the control group, forty students, took the FTF writing course five times a week for four months in similar academic calendar. The three instruments, the attitude questionnaire, tests and FGD were designed to identify views of students, instructors, and FGD participants on BL. At the end of the study, students’ final course scores were evaluated. Data were analyzed using independent samples t-tests. A statistically, significant difference was found between the FTF and BL (p<0.05). The analysis showed that the BL group was more successful than the conventional group. Besides, both instructors and students had positive attitude towards BL. The final section of the thesis showed the potential benefits and challenges, considering the pedagogical implications for the BL, and recommended possible avenues for further works.

Keywords: Blended Learning, computer attitudes, computer usefulness, computer liking, computer confidence, computer phobia

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35 The Design of the Blended Learning System via E-Media and Online Learning for the Asynchronous Learning: Case Study of Process Management Subject

Authors: Pimploi Tirastittam, Suppara Charoenpoom

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Nowadays the asynchronous learning has granted the permission to the anywhere and anything learning via the technology and E-media which give the learner more convenient. This research is about the design of the blended and online learning for the asynchronous learning of the process management subject in order to create the prototype of this subject asynchronous learning which will create the easiness and increase capability in the learning. The pattern of learning is the integration between the in-class learning and online learning via the internet. This research is mainly focused on the online learning and the online learning can be divided into 5 parts which are virtual classroom, online content, collaboration, assessment and reference material. After the system design was finished, it was evaluated and tested by 5 experts in blended learning design and 10 students which the user’s satisfaction level is good. The result is as good as the assumption so the system can be used in the process management subject for a real usage.

Keywords: Design, Process Management, Blended Learning, asynchronous learning

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34 A Design of the Infrastructure and Computer Network for Distance Education, Online Learning via New Media, E-Learning and Blended Learning

Authors: Sumitra Nuanmeesri

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The research focus on study, analyze and design the model of the infrastructure and computer networks for distance education, online learning via new media, e-learning and blended learning. The collected information from study and analyze process that information was evaluated by the index of item objective congruence (IOC) by 9 specialists to design model. The results of evaluate the model with the mean and standard deviation by the sample of 9 specialists value is 3.85. The results showed that the infrastructure and computer networks are designed to be appropriate to a great extent appropriate to a great extent.

Keywords: Online Learning, New Media, Blended Learning, infrastructure and computer network, tele-education

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33 Teacher Training in Saudi Arabia: A Blend of Old and New

Authors: Ivan Kuzio

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The GIZ/TTC project is the first of its kind in the Middle East, which allows the development of a teaching training programme to degree level based on modern methodologies. The graduates from this college are part of the Saudization programme and will, over the next four years be part of and eventually run the new Colleges of Excellence. The new Colleges of Excellence are being developed to create a local vocationally trained workforce and will run initially alongside the current Colleges of Technology.

Keywords: pedagogy, training, Blended Learning, Cognitive development, Social Skills, key competencies

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32 The Adoption of Mobile Learning in Saudi Women Faculty in King Abdulaziz University

Authors: Leena Alfarani

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Although mobile devices are ubiquitous on university campuses, teacher-readiness for mobile learning has yet to be fully explored in the non-western nations. This study shows that two main factors affect the adoption and use of m-learning among female teachers within a university in Saudi Arabia—resistance to change and perceived social culture. These determinants of the current use and intention to use of m-learning were revealed through the analysis of an online questionnaire completed by 165 female faculty members. This study reveals several important issues for m-learning research and practice. The results further extend the body of knowledge in the field of m-learning, with the findings revealing that resistance to change and perceived social culture are significant determinants of the current use of and the intention to use m-learning.

Keywords: Mobile Learning, Devices, Blended Learning, Technology Adoption

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31 Exploring and Evaluating the Current Style of Teaching Biology in Saudi Universities from Teachers' Points of View

Authors: Ibraheem Alzahrani

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The Saudi Arabia ministry of higher education has established 24 universities across various cities in the kingdom. The universities have the mandate of sustaining technological progress in both teaching and learning. The present study explores the statues of teaching in Saudi universities, focusing on biology, a critical curriculum. The paper explores biology teachers’ points of view is several Saudi higher education institutions through questionnaires disseminated via emails. According to the findings, the current teaching methods are traditional and the teachers believe that it is critical to change it. This study also, reviews how biology has been taught in the kingdom over the past, as well as how it is undertaken presently. In addition, some aspects of biology teaching are considered, including the biology curriculum and learning objectives in higher education biology.

Keywords: Higher Education, Blended Learning, teaching style, traditional learning, electronic learning, web 2.0 applications

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30 Effects of Research-Based Blended Learning Model Using Adaptive Scaffolding to Enhance Graduate Students' Research Competency and Analytical Thinking Skills

Authors: Panita Wannapiroon, Prachyanun Nilsook

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This paper is a report on the findings of a Research and Development (R&D) aiming to develop the model of Research-Based Blended Learning Model Using Adaptive Scaffolding (RBBL-AS) to enhance graduate students’ research competency and analytical thinking skills, to study the result of using such model. The sample consisted of 10 experts in the fields during the model developing stage, while there were 23 graduate students of KMUTNB for the RBBL-AS model try out stage. The research procedures included 4 phases: 1) literature review, 2) model development, 3) model experiment, and 4) model revision and confirmation. The research results were divided into 3 parts according to the procedures as described in the following session. First, the data gathering from the literature review were reported as a draft model; followed by the research finding from the experts’ interviews indicated that the model should be included 8 components to enhance graduate students’ research competency and analytical thinking skills. The 8 components were 1) cloud learning environment, 2) Ubiquitous Cloud Learning Management System (UCLMS), 3) learning courseware, 4) learning resources, 5) adaptive Scaffolding, 6) communication and collaboration tolls, 7) learning assessment, and 8) research-based blended learning activity. Second, the research finding from the experimental stage found that there were statistically significant difference of the research competency and analytical thinking skills posttest scores over the pretest scores at the .05 level. The Graduate students agreed that learning with the RBBL-AS model was at a high level of satisfaction. Third, according to the finding from the experimental stage and the comments from the experts, the developed model was revised and proposed in the report for further implication and references.

Keywords: Blended Learning, research based learning, adaptive scaffolding, research competency, analytical thinking skills

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29 Motivating the Independent Learner at the Arab Open University, Kuwait Branch

Authors: Hassan Sharafuddin, Chekra Allani

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Academicians at the Arab Open University have always voiced their concern about the efficacy of the blended learning process. Based on 75% independent study and 25% face-to-face tutorial, it poses the challenge of the predisposition to adjustment. Being used to the psychology of traditional educational systems, AOU students cannot be easily weaned from being spoon-fed. Hence they lack the motivation to plunge into self-study. For better involvement of AOU students into the learning practices, it is imperative to diagnose the factors that impede or increase their motivation. This is conducted through an empirical study grounded upon observations and tested hypothesis and aimed at monitoring and optimizing the students’ learning outcome. Recommendations of the research will follow the findings.

Keywords: Educational Psychology, pedagogy, Blended Learning, Independent Study, Academic Performance

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28 Learning and Teaching Strategies in Association with EXE Program for Master Course Students of Yerevan Brusov State University of Languages and Social Sciences

Authors: Susanna Asatryan

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The author will introduce a single module related to English teaching methodology for master course students getting specialization “A Foreign Language Teacher of High Schools And Professional Educational Institutions” of Yerevan Brusov State University of Languages and Social Sciences. The overall aim of the presentation is to introduce learning and teaching strategies within EXE Computer program for Mastery student-teachers of the University. The author will display the advantages of the use of this program. The learners interact with the teacher in the classroom as well as they are provided an opportunity for virtual domain to carry out their learning procedures in association with assessment and self-assessment. So they get integrated into blended learning. As this strategy is in its piloting stage, the author has elaborated a single module, embracing 3 main sections: -Teaching English vocabulary at high school, -Teaching English grammar at high school, and -Teaching English pronunciation at high school. The author will present the above mentioned topics with corresponding sections and subsections. The strong point is that preparing this module we have planned to display it on the blended learning landscape. So for this account working with EXE program is highly effective. As it allows the users to operate several tools for self-learning and self-testing/assessment. The author elaborated 3 single EXE files for each topic. Each file starts with the section’s subject-specific description: - Objectives and Pre-knowledge, followed by the theoretical part. The author associated and flavored her observations with appropriate samples of charts, drawings, diagrams, recordings, video-clips, photos, pictures, etc. to make learning process more effective and enjoyable. Before or after the article the author has downloaded a video clip, related to the current topic. EXE offers a wide range of tools to work out or prepare different activities and exercises for the learners: 'Interactive/non-interactive' and 'Textual/non-textual'. So with the use of these tools Multi-Select, Multi-Choice, Cloze, Drop-Down, Case Study, Gap-Filling, Matching and different other types of activities have been elaborated and submitted to the appropriate sections. The learners task is to prepare themselves for the coming module or seminar, related to teaching methodology of English vocabulary, grammar, and pronunciation. The point is that the teacher has an opportunity for face to face communication, as well as to connect with the learners through the Moodle, or as a single EXE file offer it to the learners for their self-study and self-assessment. As for the students’ feedback –EXE environment also makes it available.

Keywords: Blended Learning, EXE program, learning/teaching strategies, self-study/assessment, virtual domain

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27 Improving Listening Comprehension for EFL Pre-Intermediate Students through a Blended Learning Strategy

Authors: Heba Mustafa Abdullah

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The research aimed at examining the effect of using a suggested blended learning (BL) strategy on developing EFL pre- intermediate students. The study adopted the quasi-experimental design. The sample of the research consisted of a group of 26 EFL pre- intermediate students. Tools of the study included a listening comprehension checklist and a pre-post listening comprehension test. Results were discussed in relation to several factors that affected the language learning process. Finally, the research provided beneficial contributions in relation to manipulating BL strategy with respect to language learning process in general and oral language learning in particular.

Keywords: Blended Learning, English as a Foreign Language, listening Comprehension, oral language instruction

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26 Outcome-Based Education as Mediator of the Effect of Blended Learning on the Student Performance in Statistics

Authors: Restituto I. Rodelas

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The higher education has adopted the outcomes-based education from K-12. In this approach, the teacher uses any teaching and learning strategies that enable the students to achieve the learning outcomes. The students may be required to exert more effort and figure things out on their own. Hence, outcomes-based students are assumed to be more responsible and more capable of applying the knowledge learned. Another approach that the higher education in the Philippines is starting to adopt from other countries is blended learning. This combination of classroom and fully online instruction and learning is expected to be more effective. Participating in the online sessions, however, is entirely up to the students. Thus, the effect of blended learning on the performance of students in Statistics may be mediated by outcomes-based education. If there is a significant positive mediating effect, then blended learning can be optimized by integrating outcomes-based education. In this study, the sample will consist of four blended learning Statistics classes at Jose Rizal University in the second semester of AY 2015–2016. Two of these classes will be assigned randomly to the experimental group that will be handled using outcomes-based education. The two classes in the control group will be handled using the traditional lecture approach. Prior to the discussion of the first topic, a pre-test will be administered. The same test will be given as posttest after the last topic is covered. In order to establish equality of the groups’ initial knowledge, single factor ANOVA of the pretest scores will be performed. Single factor ANOVA of the posttest-pretest score differences will also be conducted to compare the performance of the experimental and control groups. When a significant difference is obtained in any of these ANOVAs, post hoc analysis will be done using Tukey's honestly significant difference test (HSD). Mediating effect will be evaluated using correlation and regression analyses. The groups’ initial knowledge are equal when the result of pretest scores ANOVA is not significant. If the result of score differences ANOVA is significant and the post hoc test indicates that the classes in the experimental group have significantly different scores from those in the control group, then outcomes-based education has a positive effect. Let blended learning be the independent variable (IV), outcomes-based education be the mediating variable (MV), and score difference be the dependent variable (DV). There is mediating effect when the following requirements are satisfied: significant correlation of IV to DV, significant correlation of IV to MV, significant relationship of MV to DV when both IV and MV are predictors in a regression model, and the absolute value of the coefficient of IV as sole predictor is larger than that when both IV and MV are predictors. With a positive mediating effect of outcomes-base education on the effect of blended learning on student performance, it will be recommended to integrate outcomes-based education into blended learning. This will yield the best learning results.

Keywords: Blended Learning, face-to-face, outcome-based teaching, student-centered

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25 Evaluating the Teaching and Learning Value of Tablets

Authors: Willem J. A. Louw

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The wave of new advanced computing technology that has been developed during the recent past has significantly changed the way we communicate, collaborate and collect information. It has created a new technology environment and paradigm in which our children and students grow-up and this impacts on their learning. Research confirmed that Generation Y students have a preference for learning in the new technology environment. The challenge or question is: How do we adjust our teaching and learning to make the most of these changes. The complexity of effective and efficient teaching and learning must not be underestimated and changes must be preceded by proper objective research to prevent any haphazard developments that could do more harm than benefit. A blended learning approach has been used in the Forestry department for a few numbers of years including the use of electronic-peer assisted learning (e-pal) in a fixed-computer set-up within a learning management system environment. It was decided to extend the investigation and do some exploratory research by using a range of different Tablet devices. For this purpose, learning activities or assignments were designed to cover aspects of communication, collaboration and collection of information. The Moodle learning management system was used to present normal module information, to communicate with students and for feedback and data collection. Student feedback was collected by using an online questionnaire and informal discussions. The research project was implemented in 2013, 2014 and 2015 amongst first and third-year students doing a forestry three-year technical tertiary qualification in commercial plantation management. In general, more than 80% of the students alluded to that the device was very useful in their learning environment while the rest indicated that the devices were not very useful. More than ninety percent of the students acknowledged that they would like to continue using the devices for all of their modules whilst the rest alluded to functioning efficiently without the devices. Results indicated that information collection (access to resources) was rated the highest advantageous factor followed by communication and collaboration. The main general advantages of using Tablets were listed by the students as being mobility (portability), 24/7 access to learning material and information of any kind on a user friendly device in a Wi-Fi environment, fast computing process speeds, saving time, effort and airtime through skyping and e-mail, and use of various applications. Ownership of the device is a critical factor while the risk was identified as a major potential constraint. Significant differences were reported between the different types and quality of Tablets. The preferred types are those with a bigger screen and the ones with overall better functionality and quality features. Tablets significantly increase the collaboration, communication and information collection needs of the students. It does, however, not replace the need of a computer/laptop because of limited storage and computation capacity, small screen size and inefficient typing.

Keywords: Teaching, Blended Learning, Tablets, tablet quality

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24 Students' Statistical Reasoning and Attitudes towards Statistics in Blended Learning, E-Learning and On-Campus Learning

Authors: Petros Roussos

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The present study focused on students' statistical reasoning related to Null Hypothesis Statistical Testing and p-values. Its objective was to test the hypothesis that neither the place (classroom, at a distance, online) nor the medium that actually supports the learning (ICT, internet, books) has an effect on understanding of statistical concepts. In addition, it was expected that students' attitudes towards statistics would not predict understanding of statistical concepts. The sample consisted of 385 undergraduate and postgraduate students from six state and private universities (five in Greece and one in Cyprus). Students were administered two questionnaires: a) the Greek version of the Survey of Attitudes Toward Statistics, and b) a short instrument which measures students' understanding of statistical significance and p-values. Results suggest that attitudes towards statistics do not predict students' understanding of statistical concepts, whereas the medium did not have an effect.

Keywords: e-Learning, Blended Learning, attitudes towards statistics, statistical reasoning

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23 Approaches and Strategies Used to Increase Student Engagement in Blended Learning Courses

Authors: Pinar Ozdemir Ayber, Zeina Hojeij

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Blended Learning (BL) is a rapidly growing teaching and learning approach, which brings together the best of both face-to-face and online learning to expand learning opportunities for students. However, there is limited research on the practices, opportunities and quality of instruction in Blended Classrooms, and on the role of the teaching faculty as well as the learners in these types of classes. This paper will highlight the researchers’ experiences and reflections on blending their classes. It will focus on the importance of designing effective lesson plans that emphasize learner engagement and motivation in alignment with course learning outcomes. In addition, it will identify the changing roles of the teacher and the learners and suggest appropriate variations to the traditional classroom setting taking into consideration the benefits and the challenges of the Blended Classroom. It is hoped that this paper would provide sufficient input for participants to reflect on ways they can blend their own lessons to promote ubiquitous learning and student autonomy. Practical tips and ideas will be shared with the participants on various strategies and technologies that were used in the researchers’ classes.

Keywords: Blended Learning, Learner Engagement, learner autonomy, learner motivation, mobile learning tools

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22 Flipped Classroom in a European Public Health Program: The Need for Students' Self-Directness

Authors: Nynke de Jong, Inge G. P. Duimel-Peeters

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The flipped classroom as an instructional strategy and a type of blended learning that reverses the traditional learning environment by delivering instructional content, off- and online, in- and outside the classroom, has been implemented in a 4-weeks module focusing on ageing in Europe at the Maastricht University. The main aim regarding the organization of this module was implementing flipped classroom-principles in order to create meaningful learning opportunities, while educational technologies are used to deliver content outside of the classroom. Technologies used in this module were an online interactive real time lecture from England, two interactive face-to-face lectures with visual supports, one group session including role plays and team-based learning meetings. The cohort of 2015-2016, using educational technologies, was compared with the cohort of 2014-2015 on module evaluation such as organization and instructiveness of the module, who studied the same content, although conforming the problem-based educational strategy, i.e. educational base of the Maastricht University. The cohort of 2015-2016 with its specific organization, was also more profound evaluated on outcomes as (1) experienced duration of the lecture by students, (2) experienced content of the lecture, (3) experienced the extent of the interaction and (4) format of lecturing. It was important to know how students reflected on duration and content taken into account their background knowledge so far, in order to distinguish between sufficient enough regarding prior knowledge and therefore challenging or not fitting into the course. For the evaluation, a structured online questionnaire was used, whereby above mentioned topics were asked for to evaluate by scoring them on a 4-point Likert scale. At the end, there was room for narrative feedback so that interviewees could express more in detail, if they wanted, what they experienced as good or not regarding the content of the module and its organization parts. Eventually, the response rate of the evaluation was lower than expected (54%), however, due to written feedback and exam scores, we dare to state that it gives a good and reliable overview that encourages to work further on it. Probably, the response rate may be explained by the fact that resit students were included as well, and that there maybe is too much evaluation as some time points in the program. However, overall students were excited about the organization and content of the module, but the level of self-directed behavior, necessary for this kind of educational strategy, was too low. They need to be more trained in self-directness, therefore the module will be simplified in 2016-2017 with more clear and fewer topics and extra guidance (step by step procedure). More specific information regarding the used technologies will be explained at the congress, as well as the outcomes (min and max rankings, mean and standard deviation).

Keywords: Public Health, Blended Learning, Flipped Classroom, self-directness

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21 Open Innovation Laboratory for Rapid Realization of Sensing, Smart and Sustainable Products (S3 Products) for Higher Education

Authors: J. Miranda, D. Chavarría-Barrientos, M. Ramírez-Cadena, M. E. Macías, P. Ponce, J. Noguez, R. Pérez-Rodríguez, P. K. Wright, A. Molina

Abstract:

Higher education methods need to evolve because the new generations of students are learning in different ways. One way is by adopting emergent technologies, new learning methods and promoting the maker movement. As a result, Tecnologico de Monterrey is developing Open Innovation Laboratories as an immediate response to educational challenges of the world. This paper presents an Open Innovation Laboratory for Rapid Realization of Sensing, Smart and Sustainable Products (S3 Products). The Open Innovation Laboratory is composed of a set of specific resources where students and teachers use them to provide solutions to current problems of priority sectors through the development of a new generation of products. This new generation of products considers the concepts Sensing, Smart, and Sustainable. The Open Innovation Laboratory has been implemented in different courses in the context of New Product Development (NPD) and Integrated Manufacturing Systems (IMS) at Tecnologico de Monterrey. The implementation consists of adapting this Open Innovation Laboratory within the course’s syllabus in combination with the implementation of specific methodologies for product development, learning methods (Active Learning and Blended Learning using Massive Open Online Courses MOOCs) and rapid product realization platforms. Using the concepts proposed it is possible to demonstrate that students can propose innovative and sustainable products, and demonstrate how the learning process could be improved using technological resources applied in the higher educational sector. Finally, examples of innovative S3 products developed at Tecnologico de Monterrey are presented.

Keywords: Active Learning, Blended Learning, New Product Development, maker movement, open innovation laboratory

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20 Using Educational Gaming as a Blended Learning Tool in South African Education

Authors: Maroonisha Maharajh

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Based on the Black Swan and Disruptive Innovation Theories, this study proposes an educational game based learning model within the context of the traditional classroom learning environment. In the proposed model, the perceived e-learning component is decomposed into accessibility, perceived quality and perceived usability within the traditional rural classroom environment. A sample of 92 respondents took part in this study. The results suggest that users’ continuance intention is determined by both economic and grassroots internet accessibility, which in turn is jointly determined by perceived usefulness, information quality, service quality, system quality, perceived ease of use and cognitive absorption of learning.

Keywords: e-Learning, Blended Learning, Gaming, Flipped Classroom

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19 Blended Learning in a Mathematics Classroom: A Focus in Khan Academy

Authors: Sibawu Witness Siyepu

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This study explores the effects of instructional design using blended learning in the learning of radian measures among Engineering students. Blended learning is an education programme that combines online digital media with traditional classroom methods. It requires the physical presence of both lecturer and student in a mathematics computer laboratory. Blended learning provides element of class control over time, place, path or pace. The focus was on the use of Khan Academy to supplement traditional classroom interactions. Khan Academy is a non-profit educational organisation created by educator Salman Khan with a goal of creating an accessible place for students to learn through watching videos in a computer assisted computer. The researcher who is an also lecturer in mathematics support programme collected data through instructing students to watch Khan Academy videos on radian measures, and by supplying students with traditional classroom activities. Classroom activities entails radian measure activities extracted from the Internet. Students were given an opportunity to engage in class discussions, social interactions and collaborations. These activities necessitated students to write formative assessments tests. The purpose of formative assessments tests was to find out about the students’ understanding of radian measures, including errors and misconceptions they displayed in their calculations. Identification of errors and misconceptions serve as pointers of students’ weaknesses and strengths in their learning of radian measures. At the end of data collection, semi-structure interviews were administered to a purposefully sampled group to explore their perceptions and feedback regarding the use of blended learning approach in teaching and learning of radian measures. The study employed Algebraic Insight Framework to analyse data collected. Algebraic Insight Framework is a subset of symbol sense which allows a student to correctly enter expressions into a computer assisted systems efficiently. This study offers students opportunities to enter topics and subtopics on radian measures into a computer through the lens of Khan Academy. Khan academy demonstrates procedures followed to reach solutions of mathematical problems. The researcher performed the task of explaining mathematical concepts and facilitated the process of reinvention of rules and formulae in the learning of radian measures. Lastly, activities that reinforce students’ understanding of radian were distributed. Results showed that this study enthused the students in their learning of radian measures. Learning through videos prompted the students to ask questions which brought about clarity and sense making to the classroom discussions. Data revealed that sense making through reinvention of rules and formulae assisted the students in enhancing their learning of radian measures. This study recommends the use of Khan Academy in blended learning to be introduced as a socialisation programme to all first year students. This will prepare students that are computer illiterate to become conversant with the use of Khan Academy as a powerful tool in the learning of mathematics. Khan Academy is a key technological tool that is pivotal for the development of students’ autonomy in the learning of mathematics and that promotes collaboration with lecturers and peers.

Keywords: Blended Learning, algebraic insight framework, Khan Academy, radian measures

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18 Flipped Learning in Interpreter Training: Technologies, Activities and Student Perceptions

Authors: Dohun Kim

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Technological innovations have stimulated flipped learning in many disciplines, including language teaching. It is a specific type of blended learning, which combines onsite (i.e. face-to-face) with online experiences to produce effective, efficient and flexible learning. Flipped learning literally ‘flips’ conventional teaching and learning activities upside down: it leverages technologies to deliver a lecture and direct instruction—other asynchronous activities as well—outside the classroom to reserve onsite time for interaction and activities in the upper cognitive realms: applying, analysing, evaluating and creating. Unlike the conventional flipped approaches, which focused on video lecture, followed by face-to-face or on-site session, new innovative methods incorporate various means and structures to serve the needs of different academic disciplines and classrooms. In the light of such innovations, this study adopted ‘student-engaged’ approaches to interpreter training and contrasts them with traditional classrooms. To this end, students were also encouraged to engage in asynchronous activities online, and innovative technologies, such as Telepresence, were employed. Based on the class implementation, a thorough examination was conducted to examine how we can structure and implement flipped classrooms for language and interpreting training while actively engaging learners. This study adopted a quantitative research method, while complementing it with a qualitative one. The key findings suggest that the significance of the instructor’s role does not dwindle, but his/her role changes to a moderator and a facilitator. Second, we can apply flipped learning to both theory- and practice-oriented modules. Third, students’ integration into the community of inquiry is of significant importance to foster active and higher-order learning. Fourth, cognitive presence and competence can be enhanced through strengthened and integrated teaching and social presences. Well-orchestrated teaching presence stimulates students to find out the problems and voices the convergences and divergences, while fluid social presence facilitates the exchanges of knowledge and the adjustment of solutions, which eventually contributes to consolidating cognitive presence—a key ingredient that enables the application and testing of the solutions and reflection thereon.

Keywords: Blended Learning, flipped learning, Community of Inquiry, interpreter training, student-centred learning

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17 An Appraisal of Blended Learning Approach for English Language Teaching in Saudi Arabia

Authors: H. Alqunayeer, S. Zamir

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Blended learning, an ideal amalgamation of online learning and face to face traditional approach is a new approach that may result in outstanding outcomes in the realm of teaching and learning. The dexterity and effectiveness offered by e-learning experience cannot be guaranteed in a traditional classroom, whereas one-to-one interaction the essential element of learning that can only be found in a traditional classroom. In recent years, a spectacular expansion in the incorporation of technology in language teaching and learning is observed in many universities of Saudi Arabia. Some universities recognize the importance of blending face-to-face with online instruction in language pedagogy, Qassim University is one of the many universities adopting Blackboard Learning Management system (LMS). The university has adopted this new mode of teaching/learning in year 2015. Although the experience is immature; however great pedagogical transformations are anticipated in the university through this new approach. This paper examines the role of blended language learning with particular reference to the influence of Blackboard Learning Management System on the development of English language learning for EFL learners registered in Bachelors of English language program. This paper aims at exploring three main areas: (i) the present status of Blended learning in the educational process in Saudi Arabia especially in Qassim University by providing a survey report on the number of training courses on Blackboard LMS conducted for the male and female teachers at various colleges of Qassim University, (ii) a survey on teachers perception about the utility, application and the outcome of using blended Learning approach in teaching English language skills courses, (iii) the students’ views on the efficiency of Blended learning approach in learning English language skills courses. Besides, analysis of students’ limitations and challenges related to the experience of blended learning via Blackboard, the suggestion and recommendations offered by the language learners have also been thought-out. The study is empirical in nature. In order to gather data on the afore mentioned areas survey questionnaire method has been used: in order to study students’ perception, a 5 point Likert-scale questionnaire has been distributed to 200 students of English department registered in Bachelors in English program (level 5 through level 8). Teachers’ views have been surveyed with the help of interviewing 25 EFL teachers skilled in using Blackboard LMS in their lectures. In order to ensure the validity and reliability of questionnaire, the inter-rater approach and Cronbach’s Alpha analysis have been used respectively. Analysis of variance (ANOVA) has been used to analyze the students’ perception about the productivity of the Blended approach in learning English language skills. The analysis of feedback by Saudi teachers and students about the usefulness, ingenuity, and productivity of Blended Learning via Blackboard LMS highlights the need of encouraging and expanding the implementation of this new approach into the field of English language teaching in Saudi Arabia, in order to augment congenial learning aura. Furthermore, it is hoped that the propositions and practical suggestions offered by the study will be functional for other similar learning environments.

Keywords: Blended Learning, EFL teachers, black board learning management system, English as foreign language (EFL) learners

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16 Project Work with Design Thinking and Blended Learning: A Practical Report from Teaching in Higher Education

Authors: C. Vogeler

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Change processes such as individualization and digitalization have an impact on higher education. Graduates are expected to cooperate in creative work processes in their professional life. During their studies, they need to be prepared accordingly. This includes modern learning scenarios that integrate the benefits of digital media. Therefore, design thinking and blended learning have been combined in the project-based seminar conception introduced here. The presented seminar conception has been realized and evaluated with students of information sciences since September 2017. Within the seminar, the students learn to work on a project. They apply the methods in a problem-based learning scenario. Task of the case study is to arrange a conference on the topic gaming in libraries. In order to collaborative develop creative possibilities of realization within the group of students the design thinking method has been chosen. Design thinking is a method, used to create user-centric, problem-solving and need-driven innovation through creative collaboration in multidisciplinary teams. Central characteristics are the openness of this approach to work results and the visualization of ideas. This approach is now also accepted in the field of higher education. Especially in problem-based learning scenarios, the method offers clearly defined process steps for creative ideas and their realization. The creative process can be supported by digital media, such as search engines and tools for the documentation of brainstorming, creation of mind maps, project management etc. Because the students have to do two-thirds of the workload in their private study, design thinking has been combined with a blended learning approach. This supports students’ preparation and follow-up of the joint work in workshops (flipped classroom scenario) as well as the communication and collaboration during the entire project work phase. For this purpose, learning materials are provided on a Moodle-based learning platform as well as various tools that supported the design thinking process as described above. In this paper, the seminar conception with a combination of design thinking and blended learning is described and the potentials and limitations of the chosen strategy for the development of a course with a multimedia approach in higher education are reflected.

Keywords: Blended Learning, Design Thinking, Flipped Classroom, digital media tools and methods

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15 Introducing Transport Engineering through Blended Learning Initiatives

Authors: Kasun P. Wijayaratna, Lauren Gardner, Taha Hossein Rashidi

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Undergraduate students entering university across the last 2 to 3 years tend to be born during the middle years of the 1990s. This generation of students has been exposed to the internet and the desire and dependency on technology since childhood. Brains develop based on environmental influences and technology has wired this generation of student to be attuned to sophisticated complex visual imagery, indicating visual forms of learning may be more effective than the traditional lecture or discussion formats. Furthermore, post-millennials perspectives on career are not focused solely on stability and income but are strongly driven by interest, entrepreneurship and innovation. Accordingly, it is important for educators to acknowledge the generational shift and tailor the delivery of learning material to meet the expectations of the students and the needs of industry. In the context of transport engineering, effectively teaching undergraduate students the basic principles of transport planning, traffic engineering and highway design is fundamental to the progression of the profession from a practice and research perspective. Recent developments in technology have transformed the discipline as practitioners and researchers move away from the traditional “pen and paper” approach to methods involving the use of computer programs and simulation. Further, enhanced accessibility of technology for students has changed the way they understand and learn material being delivered at tertiary education institutions. As a consequence, blended learning approaches, which aim to integrate face to face teaching with flexible self-paced learning resources, have become prevalent to provide scalable education that satisfies the expectations of students. This research study involved the development of a series of ‘Blended Learning’ initiatives implemented within an introductory transport planning and geometric design course, CVEN2401: Sustainable Transport and Highway Engineering, taught at the University of New South Wales, Australia. CVEN2401 was modified by conducting interactive polling exercises during lectures, including weekly online quizzes, offering a series of supplementary learning videos, and implementing a realistic design project that students needed to complete using modelling software that is widely used in practice. These activities and resources were aimed to improve the learning environment for a large class size in excess of 450 students and to ensure that practical industry valued skills were introduced. The case study compared the 2016 and 2017 student cohorts based on their performance across assessment tasks as well as their reception to the material revealed through student feedback surveys. The initiatives were well received with a number of students commenting on the ability to complete self-paced learning and an appreciation of the exposure to a realistic design project. From an educator’s perspective, blending the course made it feasible to interact and engage with students. Personalised learning opportunities were made available whilst delivering a considerable volume of complex content essential for all undergraduate Civil and Environmental Engineering students. Overall, this case study highlights the value of blended learning initiatives, especially in the context of large class size university courses.

Keywords: Teaching, Blended Learning, Highway Design, Transport Planning

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14 Engineering of E-Learning Content Creation: Case Study for African Countries

Authors: María-Dolores Afonso-Suárez, Nayra Pumar-Carreras, Juan Ruiz-Alzola

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This research addresses the use of an e-Learning creation methodology for learning objects. Throughout the process, indicators are being gathered, to determine if it responds to the main objectives of an engineering discipline. These parameters will also indicate if it is necessary to review the creation cycle and readjust any phase. Within the project developed for this study, apart from the use of structured methods, there has been a central objective: the establishment of a learning atmosphere. A place where all the professionals involved are able to collaborate, plan, solve problems and determine guides to follow in order to develop creative and innovative solutions. It has been outlined as a blended learning program with an assessment plan that proposes face to face lessons, coaching, collaboration, multimedia and web based learning objects as well as support resources. The project has been drawn as a long term task, the pilot teaching actions designed provide the preliminary results object of study. This methodology is been used in the creation of learning content for the African countries of Senegal, Mauritania and Cape Verde. It has been developed within the framework of the MACbioIDi, an Interreg European project for the International cooperation and development. The educational area of this project is focused in the training and advice of professionals of the medicine as well as engineers in the use of applications of medical imaging technology, specifically the 3DSlicer application and the Open Anatomy Browser.

Keywords: e-Learning, Blended Learning, International Cooperation, teaching contents engineering, open anatomy browser

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13 Generic Competences, the Great Forgotten: Teamwork in the Undergraduate Degree in Translation and Interpretation

Authors: María-Dolores Olvera-Lobo, Bryan John Robinson, Juncal Gutierrez-Artacho

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Graduates are equipped with a wide range of generic competencies which complement solid curricular competencies and facilitate their access to the labour market in diverse fields and careers. However, some generic competencies such as instrumental, personal and systemic competencies related to teamwork and interpersonal communication skills, decision-making and organization skills are seldom taught explicitly and even less often assessed. In this context, translator training has embraced a broad range of competencies specified in the undergraduate program currently taught at universities and opens up the learning experience to cover areas often ignored due to the difficulties inherent in both teaching and assessment. In practice, translator training combines two well-established approaches to teaching/learning: project-based learning and genuinely cooperative – or merely collaborative – learning. Our professional approach to translator training is a model focused on and adapted to the teleworking context of professional translation and presented through the medium of blended e-learning. Teamwork-related competencies are extremely relevant, and they require explicit and implicit teaching so that graduates can be confident about their capacity to make their way in professional contexts. In order to highlight the importance of teamwork and intra-team relationships beyond the classroom, we aim to raise awareness of teamwork processes so as to empower translation students in managing their interaction and ensure that they gain valuable pre-professional experience. With these objectives, at the University of Granada (Spain) we have developed a range of classroom activities and assessment tools. The results of their application are summarized in this study.

Keywords: Higher Education, Blended Learning, students’ perceptions, translator training, collaborative teamwork, cross-curricular competencies, intra-team relationships

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12 A Flipped Learning Experience in an Introductory Course of Information and Communication Technology in Two Bachelor's Degrees: Combining the Best of Online and Face-to-Face Teaching

Authors: Begona del Pino, Beatriz Prieto, Alberto Prieto

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Two opposite approaches to teaching can be considered: in-class learning (teacher-oriented) versus virtual learning (student-oriented). The most known example of the latter is Massive Online Open Courses (MOOCs). Both methodologies have pros and cons. Nowadays there is an increasing trend towards combining both of them. Blending learning is considered a valuable tool for improving learning since it combines student-centred interactive e-learning and face to face instruction. The aim of this contribution is to exchange and share the experience and research results of a blended-learning project that took place in the University of Granada (Spain). The research objective was to prove how combining didactic resources of a MOOC with in-class teaching, interacting directly with students, can substantially improve academic results, as well as student acceptance. The proposed methodology is based on the use of flipped learning technics applied to the subject ‘Fundamentals of Computer Science’ of the first course of two degrees: Telecommunications Engineering, and Industrial Electronics. In this proposal, students acquire the theoretical knowledges at home through a MOOC platform, where they watch video-lectures, do self-evaluation tests, and use other academic multimedia online resources. Afterwards, they have to attend to in-class teaching where they do other activities in order to interact with teachers and the rest of students (discussing of the videos, solving of doubts and practical exercises, etc.), trying to overcome the disadvantages of self-regulated learning. The results are obtained through the grades of the students and their assessment of the blended experience, based on an opinion survey conducted at the end of the course. The major findings of the study are the following: The percentage of students passing the subject has grown from 53% (average from 2011 to 2014 using traditional learning methodology) to 76% (average from 2015 to 2018 using blended methodology). The average grade has improved from 5.20±1.99 to 6.38±1.66. The results of the opinion survey indicate that most students preferred blended methodology to traditional approaches, and positively valued both courses. In fact, 69% of students felt ‘quite’ or ‘very’ satisfied with the classroom activities; 65% of students preferred the flipped classroom methodology to traditional in-class lectures, and finally, 79% said they were ‘quite’ or ‘very’ satisfied with the course in general. The main conclusions of the experience are the improvement in academic results, as well as the highly satisfactory assessments obtained in the opinion surveys. The results confirm the huge potential of combining MOOCs in formal undergraduate studies with on-campus learning activities. Nevertheless, the results in terms of students’ participation and follow-up have a wide margin for improvement. The method is highly demanding for both students and teachers. As a recommendation, students must perform the assigned tasks with perseverance, every week, in order to take advantage of the face-to-face classes. This perseverance is precisely what needs to be promoted among students because it clearly brings about an improvement in learning.

Keywords: Blended Learning, Flipped Classroom, mooc, lessons learned, educational paradigm, flipped learning technologies, massive online open course, teacher roles through technology

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11 The Impact of the Flipped Classroom Instructional Model on MPharm Students in Two Pharmacy Schools in the UK

Authors: Mona Almanasef, Angel Chater, Jane Portlock

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Introduction: A 'flipped classroom' uses technology to shift the traditional lecture outside the scheduled class time and uses the face-to-face time to engage students in interactive activities. Aim of the Study: Assess the feasibility, acceptability, and effectiveness of using the 'flipped classroom' teaching format with MPharm students in two pharmacy schools in the UK: UCL School of Pharmacy and the School of Pharmacy and Biomedical Sciences at University of Portsmouth. Methods: An experimental mixed methods design was employed, with final year MPharm students in two phases; 1) a qualitative study using focus groups, 2) a quasi-experiment measuring knowledge acquisition and satisfaction by delivering a session on rheumatoid arthritis, in two teaching formats: the flipped classroom and the traditional lecture. Results: The flipped classroom approach was preferred over the traditional lecture for delivering a pharmacy practice topic, and it was comparable or better than the traditional lecture with respect to knowledge acquisition. In addition, this teaching approach was found to overcome the perceived challenges of the traditional lecture method such as fast pace instructions, student disengagement and boredom due to lack of activities and/or social anxiety. However, high workload and difficult or new concepts could be barriers to pre-class preparation, and therefore successful flipped classroom. The flipped classroom encouraged learning scaffolding where students could benefit from application of knowledge, and interaction with peers and the lecturer, which might, in turn, facilitate learning consolidation and deep understanding. This research indicated that the flipped classroom was beneficial for all learning styles. Conclusion: Implementing the flipped classroom at both pharmacy institutions was successful and well received by final year MPharm students. Given the attention now being put on the Teaching Excellence Framework (TEF), understanding effective methods of teaching to enhance student achievement and satisfaction is now more valuable than ever.

Keywords: Blended Learning, Pharmacy Education, Flipped Classroom, inverted classroom

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10 Creating a Critical Digital Pedagogy Context: Challenges and Potential of Designing and Implementing a Blended Learning Intervention for Adult Refugees in Greece

Authors: Roula Kitsiou, Sofia Tsioli, Eleni Gana

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The current sociopolitical realities (displacement, encampment, and resettlement) refugees experience in Greece are a quite complex issue. Their educational and social ‘integration’ is characterized by transition, insecurity, and constantly changing needs. Based on the current research data, technology and more specifically mobile phones are one of the most important resources for refugees, regardless of their levels of conventional literacy. The proposed paper discusses the challenges encountered during the design and implementation of the educational Action 16 ‘Language Education for Adult Refugees’. Action 16 is one of the 24 Actions of the Project PRESS (Provision of Refugee Education and Support Scheme), funded by the Hellenic Open University (2016-2017). Project PRESS had two main objectives: a) to address the educational and integration needs of refugees in transit, who currently reside in Greece, and b) implement research-based educational interventions in online and offline sites. In the present paper, the focus is on reflection and discussion about the challenges and the potential of integrating technology in language learning for a target-group with many specific needs, which have been recorded in field notes among other research tools (ethnographic data) used in the context of PRESS. Action 16, explores if and how technology enhanced language activities in real-time and place mediated through teachers, as well as an autonomous computer-mediated learning space (moodle platform and application) builds on and expands the linguistic, cultural and digital resources and repertoires of the students by creating collaborative face-to-face and digital learning spaces. A broader view on language as a dynamic puzzle of semiotic resources and processes based on the concept of translanguaging is adopted. Specifically, designing the blended learning environment we draw on the construct of translanguaging a) as a symbolic means to valorize students’ repertoires and practices, b) as a method to reach to specific applications of a target-language that the context brings forward (Greek useful to them), and c) as a means to expand refugees’ repertoires. This has led to the creation of a learning space where students' linguistic and cultural resources can find paths to expression. In this context, communication and learning are realized by mutually investing multiple aspects of the team members' identities as educational material designers, teachers, and students on the teaching and learning processes. Therefore, creativity, humour, code-switching, translation, transference etc. are all possible means that can be employed in order to promote multilingual communication and language learning towards raising intercultural awareness in a critical digital pedagogy context. The qualitative analysis includes critical reflection on the developed educational material, team-based reflexive discussions, teachers’ reports data, and photographs from the interventions. The endeavor to involve women and men with a refugee background into a blended learning experience was quite innovative especially for the Greek context. It reflects a pragmatist ethos of the choices made in order to respond to the here-and-now needs of the refugees, and finally it was a very challenging task that has led all actors involved into Action 16 to (re)negotiations of subjectivities and products in a creative and hopeful way.

Keywords: Language Education, Integration, Blended Learning, Refugees

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9 The Factors Affecting the Use of Massive Open Online Courses in Blended Learning by Lecturers in Universities

Authors: Taghreed Alghamdi, Wendy Hall, David Millard

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Massive Open Online Courses (MOOCs) have recently gained widespread interest in the academic world, starting a wide range of discussion of a number of issues. One of these issues, using MOOCs in teaching and learning in the higher education by integrating MOOCs’ contents with traditional face-to-face activities in blended learning format, is called blended MOOCs (bMOOCs) and is intended not to replace traditional learning but to enhance students learning. Most research on MOOCs has focused on students’ perception and institutional threats whereas there is a lack of published research on academics’ experiences and practices. Thus, the first aim of the study is to develop a classification of blended MOOCs models by conducting a systematic literature review, classifying 19 different case studies, and identifying the broad types of bMOOCs models namely: Supplementary Model and Integrated Model. Thus, the analyses phase will emphasize on these different types of bMOOCs models in terms of adopting MOOCs by lecturers. The second aim of the study is to improve the understanding of lecturers’ acceptance of bMOOCs by investigate the factors that influence academics’ acceptance of using MOOCs in traditional learning by distributing an online survey to lecturers who participate in MOOCs platforms. These factors can help institutions to encourage their lecturers to integrate MOOCs with their traditional courses in universities.

Keywords: Higher Education, Blended Learning, acceptance, lecturers, MOOCs, blended MOOCs, professors

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8 Blended Learning Instructional Approach to Teach Pharmaceutical Calculations

Authors: Sini George

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Active learning pedagogies are valued for their success in increasing 21st-century learners’ engagement, developing transferable skills like critical thinking or quantitative reasoning, and creating deeper and more lasting educational gains. 'Blended learning' is an active learning pedagogical approach in which direct instruction moves from the group learning space to the individual learning space, and the resulting group space is transformed into a dynamic, interactive learning environment where the educator guides students as they apply concepts and engage creatively in the subject matter. This project aimed to develop a blended learning instructional approach to teaching concepts around pharmaceutical calculations to year 1 pharmacy students. The wrong dose, strength or frequency of a medication accounts for almost a third of medication errors in the NHS therefore, progression to year 2 requires a 70% pass in this calculation test, in addition to the standard progression requirements. Many students were struggling to achieve this requirement in the past. It was also challenging to teach these concepts to students of a large class (> 130) with mixed mathematical abilities, especially within a traditional didactic lecture format. Therefore, short screencasts with voice-over of the lecturer were provided in advance of a total of four teaching sessions (two hours/session), incorporating core content of each session and talking through how they approached the calculations to model metacognition. Links to the screencasts were posted on the learning management. Viewership counts were used to determine that the students were indeed accessing and watching the screencasts on schedule. In the classroom, students had to apply the knowledge learned beforehand to a series of increasingly difficult set of questions. Students were then asked to create a question in group settings (two students/group) and to discuss the questions created by their peers in their groups to promote deep conceptual learning. Students were also given time for question-and-answer period to seek clarifications on the concepts covered. Student response to this instructional approach and their test grades were collected. After collecting and organizing the data, statistical analysis was carried out to calculate binomial statistics for the two data sets: the test grade for students who received blended learning instruction and the test grades for students who received instruction in a standard lecture format in class, to compare the effectiveness of each type of instruction. Student response and their performance data on the assessment indicate that the learning of content in the blended learning instructional approach led to higher levels of student engagement, satisfaction, and more substantial learning gains. The blended learning approach enabled each student to learn how to do calculations at their own pace freeing class time for interactive application of this knowledge. Although time-consuming for an instructor to implement, the findings of this research demonstrate that the blended learning instructional approach improves student academic outcomes and represents a valuable method to incorporate active learning methodologies while still maintaining broad content coverage. Satisfaction with this approach was high, and we are currently developing more pharmacy content for delivery in this format.

Keywords: Active Learning, Blended Learning, metacognition, instructional approach, deep conceptual learning, pharmaceutical calculations

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7 WhatsApp as Part of a Blended Learning Model to Help Programming Novices

Authors: Tlou J. Ramabu

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Programming is one of the challenging subjects in the field of computing. In the higher education sphere, some programming novices’ performance, retention rate, and success rate are not improving. Most of the time, the problem is caused by the slow pace of learning, difficulty in grasping the syntax of the programming language and poor logical skills. More importantly, programming forms part of major subjects within the field of computing. As a result, specialized pedagogical methods and innovation are highly recommended. Little research has been done on the potential productivity of the WhatsApp platform as part of a blended learning model. In this article, the authors discuss the WhatsApp group as a part of blended learning model incorporated for a group of programming novices. We discuss possible administrative activities for productive utilisation of the WhatsApp group on the blended learning overview. The aim is to take advantage of the popularity of WhatsApp and the time students spend on it for their educational purpose. We believe that blended learning featuring a WhatsApp group may ease novices’ cognitive load and strengthen their foundational programming knowledge and skills. This is a work in progress as the proposed blended learning model with WhatsApp incorporated is yet to be implemented.

Keywords: Higher Education, Programming, Blended Learning, lecturers, WhatsApp, novices

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