Leila Goosen

Abstracts

3 Learning Management System Technologies for Teaching Computer Science at a Distance Education Institution

Authors: Leila Goosen, Dalize van Heerden

Abstract:

The performance outcomes of first year Computer Science and Information Technology students across the world are of great concern, whether they are being taught in a face-to-face environment or via distance education. In the face-to-face environment, it is, however, somewhat easier to teach and support students than it is in a distance education environment. The face-to-face academic can more easily gauge the level of understanding and participation of students and implement interventions to address issues, which may arise. With the inroads that Web 2.0 and Web 3.0 technologies are making, the world of online teaching and learning are rapidly expanding, bringing about technologies, which allows for similar interactions between online academics and their students as available to their face-to-face counter parts. At the University of South Africa (UNISA), the Learning Management System (LMS) is called myUNISA and it is deployed on a SAKAI platform. In this paper, we will take a look at some of the myUNISA technologies implemented in the teaching of a first year programming course, how they are implemented and, in some cases, we will indicate how this affects the performance outcomes of students.

Keywords: Computer Science, Distance Education Technologies, Learning Management System, face-to-face environment

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2 Distance Education Technologies for Empowerment and Equity in an Information Technology Environment

Authors: Leila Goosen, Toppie N. Mukasa-Lwanga

Abstract:

The purpose of this paper relates to exploring academics’ use of distance education technologies for empowerment and equity in an Information Technology environment. Literature was studied on academics’ technology use towards effective teaching and meaningful learning in a distance education Information Technology environment. Main arguments presented center on formulating and situating significant concepts within an appropriate theoretical and conceptual framework, including those related to distance education, throughput and other measures of academic efficiency. The research design, sampling, data collection instrument and the validity and reliability thereof, as well as the data analysis method used is described. The paper discusses results related to academics’ use of technology towards effective teaching and meaningful learning in a distance education Information Technology environment. Conclusions are finally presented on the way in which this paper makes a significant and original contribution regarding academics’ use of technology towards effective teaching and meaningful learning in a distance education Information Technology environment.

Keywords: Education, Distance, technologies, Information Technology Environment

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1 myITLab as an Implementation Instance of Distance Education Technologies

Authors: Leila Goosen

Abstract:

The research problem reported on in this paper relates to improving success in Computer Science and Information Technology subjects where students are learning applications, especially when teaching occurs in a distance education context. An investigation was launched in order to address students’ struggles with applications, and improve their assessment in such subjects. Some of the main arguments presented centre on formulating and situating significant concepts within an appropriate conceptual framework. The paper explores the experiences and perceptions of computing instructors, teaching assistants, students and higher education institutions on how they are empowered by using technologies such as myITLab. They also share how they are working with the available features to successfully teach applications to their students. The data collection methodology used is then described. The paper includes discussions on how myITLab empowers instructors, teaching assistants, students and higher education institutions. Conclusions are presented on the way in which this paper could make an original and significant contribution to the promotion and development of knowledge in fields related to successfully teaching applications for student learning, including in a distance education context. The paper thus provides a forum for practitioners to highlight and discuss insights and successes, as well as identify new technical and organisational challenges, lessons and concerns regarding practical activities related to myITLab as an implementation instance of distance education technologies.

Keywords: Education, Distance, technologies, myITLab

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