Commenced in January 2007
Frequency: Monthly
Edition: International
Paper Count: 1785

Search results for: Communication and problem-solving skills

1785 The Engineering Eportfolio: Enhancing Communication, Critical Thinking and Problem Solving and Teamwork Skills?

Authors: Linda Mei Sui Khoo, Dorit Maor, Renato Schibeci

Abstract:

Graduate attributes have received increasing attention over recent years as universities incorporate these attributes into the curriculum. Graduates who have adequate technical knowledge only are not sufficiently equipped to compete effectively in the work place; they also need non disciplinary skills ie, graduate attributes. The purpose of this paper is to investigate the impact of an eportfolio in a technical communication course to enhance engineering students- graduate attributes: namely, learning of communication, critical thinking and problem solving and teamwork skills. Two questionnaires were used to elicit information from the students: one on their preferred and the other on the actual learning process. In addition, student perceptions of the use of eportfolio as a learning tool were investigated. Preliminary findings showed that most of the students- expectations have been met with their actual learning. This indicated that eportfolio has the potential as a tool to enhance students- graduate attributes.

Keywords: Eportfolio, Communication Skills, Critical Thinking and Problem Solving Skills and Teamwork Skills

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1784 Analyzing the Importance of Technical Writing in Professional Industry of Pakistan

Authors: Sadaf Khalid, Jahanzaib Sarwar, Rabia Tauseef

Abstract:

No matter how much perfect we become in our practical skills regarding the implementation of learned ideas, the need of technical writing capability cannot be neglected being a professional. Technical writing is a way of communicating the ideas in written which otherwise need to be presented orally. Technical writing skills have always been the need of the time, as they are required for internal as well as external official communication in both formal and informal manner. Moreover, they are the best way to capture the attention of your customers by presenting information in effective manner. This paper aims to analyze the importance of technical writing skills in professional industries of Pakistan by conducting a survey. Survey results presented in this paper clearly depicts the importance of formal and informal written communication media used in different professional industries in Pakistan. Analysis and discussion of the extent to which the alternative ways of communication besides technical writing have got importance in Pakistan is also an important aspect of this survey.

Keywords: Technical writing, Survey, Oral communication, Globalization, Communication trends, Formal Communication Media, Informal Communication, Audience

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1783 Enhancing Soft Skills through Peer Review Activity in a Technical Writing Class

Authors: Hairuzila Idrus, Zullina Hussain Shaari, Razol Mahari Mohd Ali

Abstract:

Peer review is an activity where students review their classmates- writing and then evaluate the content, development, unity and organization. Studies have shown that peer review activities benefit both the reviewer and the writer in developing their reading and writing skills. Furthermore, peer review activities may also enhance students- soft skills. This study was conducted to find out the benefits of peer review activity in a technical writing class based on engineering students- perceptions. The study also highlights how these benefits could improve the students- soft skills. A set of questionnaire was given to 200 undergraduate students of a technical writing course. The results of the study indicate that the activity could help improve their critical thinking skills, written and oral communication skills, as well as team work. This paper further discusses how the implications of these benefits could help enhance students- soft skills.

Keywords: Peer review, soft skills, technical writing.

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1782 The Age Difference in Social Skills Constructs for School Adaptation: A Cross-Sectional Study of Japanese Students at Elementary, Junior, and Senior High Schools

Authors: Hiroki Shinkawa, Tadaaki Tomiie

Abstract:

Many interventions for social skills acquisition aim to decrease the gap between social skills deficits in the individual and normative social skills; nevertheless little is known of typical social skills according to age difference in students. In this study, we developed new quintet of Hokkaido Social Skills Inventory (HSSI) to identify age-appropriate social skills for school adaptation. First, we selected 13 categories of social skills for school adaptation from previous studies, and created questionnaire items through discussion by 25 teachers in all three levels from elementary schools to senior high schools. Second, the factor structures of five versions of the social skills scale were investigated on 2nd grade (n = 1,864), 4th grade (n = 1,936), 6th grade (n = 2,085), 7th grade (n = 2,007), and 10th grade (n = 912) students, respectively. The exploratory factor analysis showed that a number of constructing factors of social skills increased as one’s grade in school advanced. The results in the present study can be useful to characterize the age-appropriate social skills for school adaptation. 

Keywords: Social skills, age difference, children, adolescents.

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1781 The Experiences of South-African High-School Girls in a Fab Lab Environment

Authors: Nomusa Dlodlo, Ronald Noel Beyers

Abstract:

This paper reports on an effort to address the issue of inequality in girls- and women-s access to science, engineering and technology (SET) education and careers through raising awareness on SET among secondary school girls in South Africa. Girls participated in hands-on high-tech rapid prototyping environment of a fabrication laboratory that was aimed at stimulating creativity and innovation as part of a Fab Kids initiative. The Fab Kids intervention is about creating a SET pipeline as part of the Young Engineers and Scientists of Africa Initiative.The methodology was based on a real world situation and a hands-on approach. In the process, participants acquired a number of skills including computer-aided design, research skills, communication skills, teamwork skills, technical drawing skills, writing skills and problem-solving skills. Exposure to technology enhanced the girls- confidence in being able to handle technology-related tasks.

Keywords: Girls, design engineering, gender, science, women.

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1780 Dynamic Capitalization and Visualization Strategy in Collaborative Knowledge Management System for EI Process

Authors: Bolanle F. Oladejo, Victor T. Odumuyiwa, Amos A. David

Abstract:

Knowledge is attributed to human whose problemsolving behavior is subjective and complex. In today-s knowledge economy, the need to manage knowledge produced by a community of actors cannot be overemphasized. This is due to the fact that actors possess some level of tacit knowledge which is generally difficult to articulate. Problem-solving requires searching and sharing of knowledge among a group of actors in a particular context. Knowledge expressed within the context of a problem resolution must be capitalized for future reuse. In this paper, an approach that permits dynamic capitalization of relevant and reliable actors- knowledge in solving decision problem following Economic Intelligence process is proposed. Knowledge annotation method and temporal attributes are used for handling the complexity in the communication among actors and in contextualizing expressed knowledge. A prototype is built to demonstrate the functionalities of a collaborative Knowledge Management system based on this approach. It is tested with sample cases and the result showed that dynamic capitalization leads to knowledge validation hence increasing reliability of captured knowledge for reuse. The system can be adapted to various domains.

Keywords: Actors' communication, knowledge annotation, recursive knowledge capitalization, visualization.

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1779 Developing Measurement Model of Interpersonal Skills of Youth

Authors: Mohd Yusri Ibrahim

Abstract:

Although it is known that interpersonal skills are essential for personal development, the debate however continues as to how to measure those skills, especially in youths. This study was conducted to develop a measurement model of interpersonal skills by suggesting three construct namely personal, skills and relationship; six function namely self, perception, listening, conversation, emotion and conflict management; and 30 behaviours as indicators. This cross-sectional survey by questionnaires was applied in east side of peninsula of Malaysia for 150 respondents, and analyzed by structural equation modelling (SEM) by AMOS. The suggested constructs, functions and indicators were consider accepted as measurement elements by observing on regression weight for standard loading, average variance extracted (AVE) for convergent validity, square root of AVE for discriminant validity, composite reliability (CR), and at least three fit indexes for model fitness. Finally, a measurement model of interpersonal skill for youth was successfully developed.

Keywords: Interpersonal communication, interpersonal skill, youth.

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1778 The Study of Digital Transformation Skills and Competencies Framework at Umm Alqura University

Authors: Anod H. Alhazmi, Hanaa A. Yamani

Abstract:

The lack of digital transformation professionals could prevent Saudi Arabia’s universities from providing digital services. The task of understanding what digital skills are needed within an organization, measuring the existing skills, and developing or attracting talents is a complex task. This paper provides a comprehensive analysis of the digital transformation skills needed in the organizations who seek digital transformation and identifies the skills and competencies framework DigSC built on Skills Framework for the Informational Age (SFIA) framework that is adopted by the Ministry of Communications and Information Technology (MCIT) in Saudi Arabia. The framework adopted identifies the main digital transformation skills clusters, categories and levels of responsibilities for each job description to fill the gap between this requirement and the digital skills supplied by the Umm Alqura University (UQU).

Keywords: Competencies, digital transformation, framework, skills, Umm Alqura University.

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1777 Communication Engineering Curriculum (Past, Present and the Future)

Authors: Abdurazzag Ali Aburas, Indira Rustempasic, Indira Muhic, Busra Gheith Yildiz

Abstract:

At present time, competition, unpredictable fluctuations have made communication engineering education in the global sphere really difficult. Confront with new situation in the engineering education sector. Communication engineering education has to be reformed and ready to use more advanced technologies. We realized that one of the general problems of student`s education is that after graduating from their universities, they are not prepared to face the real life challenges and full skilled to work in industry. They are prepared only to think like engineers and professionals but they also need to possess some others non-technical skills. In today-s environment, technical competence alone is not sufficient for career success. Employers want employees (graduate engineers) who have good oral and written communication (soft) skills. It does require for team work, business awareness, organization, management skills, responsibility, initiative, problem solving and IT competency. This proposed curriculum brings interactive, creative, interesting, effective learning methods, which includes online education, virtual labs, practical work, problem-based learning (PBL), and lectures given by industry experts. Giving short assignments, presentations, reports, research papers and projects students can significantly improve their non-technical skills. Also, we noticed the importance of using ICT technologies in engineering education which used by students and teachers, and included that into proposed teaching and learning methods. We added collaborative learning between students through team work which builds theirs skills besides course materials. The prospective on this research that we intent to update communication engineering curriculum in order to get fully constructed engineer students to ready for real industry work.

Keywords: communication engineering, curriculum education, ICT, industry

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1776 Developing an Instrument to Measure Teachers’ Self-Efficacy of Teaching Innovation Skills

Authors: Huda S. Al-Azmi

Abstract:

There is a growing consensus that adoption of teachers’ self-efficacy measurement tools help to assess teachers’ abilities in specific areas in order to improve their skills. As a result, different instruments to assess teachers’ ability were developed by academics and practitioners. However, many of these instruments focused either on general teaching skills, or on the other hand, were very specific to one subject. As such, these instruments do not offer a tool to measure the ability of teachers in teaching 21st century skills such as innovation skills. Teaching innovation skills helps to prepare students for lives and careers in the 21st century. The purpose of this study is to develop an instrument measuring teachers’ self-efficacy of teaching innovation skills related to the classroom context and evaluating the teachers’ beliefs regarding their ability in teaching innovation skills. To reach this goal, the 16-item instrument measures four dimensions of innovation skills: creativity, critical thinking, communication, and collaboration. 211 secondary-school teachers filled out the survey to quantitatively analyze the quality of the instrument. The instrument’s reliability and item analysis were measured by using jMetrik. The results concluded that the mean of self-efficacy ranged from 3 to 3.6 without extreme high or low self-efficacy scores. The discrimination analysis revealed that one item recorded a negative correlation with the total, and three items recorded low correlation with the total. The reliabilities of items ranged from 0.64 to 0.69 and the instrument needed a couple of revisions before practical use. The study concluded the need to discard one item and revise five items to increase the quality of the instrument for future work.

Keywords: Critical thinking, collaboration, innovation skills, self-efficacy.

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1775 Information and Communication Technologies in Collaboration Projects via the Internet

Authors: Murat Öztok, Nesrin Özdener

Abstract:

The aim of this study is to determine the basic information and communication technology (ICT) skills that may be needed by students studying in the 8th grade of the primary education in their cooperative project works implemented via the Internet. Within the scope of the study, the curriculum used for European Computer Driving License (ECDL) and the curriculum used in Turkey are also compared in terms of the ability to use ICT, which is aimed to be provided to the students. The research population of the study, during which the pre test – post test control group experimental model was used, consisted of 40 students from three different schools. In the first stage of the study, the skills that might be needed by students for their cooperative project works implemented via the Internet were determined through examination of the completed Comenious, e – twinning and WorldLinks projects. In the second stage of the study, the curriculums of the Turkish Ministry of National Education (MEB) and ECDL were evaluated by seven different teachers in line with these skills. Also in this study the ECDL and MEB curriculums were compared in terms of capability to provide the skills to implement cooperative projects via the Internet. In line with the findings of the study, the skills that might be needed by students to implement cooperative projects via the Internet were outlined, and existence of a significant difference was established in favor of the ECDL curriculum upon comparison of both curriculums in accordance with this outline (U = 50,500; p <0,05). The findings of the study also suggested that the students had considerable deficiencies in implementation of cooperative projects via the Internet without the ICT infrastructure.

Keywords: Collaboration Projects, Comenius, Curriculum, ICT.

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1774 The Use of Music Therapy to Improve Non-Verbal Communication Skills for Children with Autism

Authors: Maria Vinca Novenia

Abstract:

The number of school-aged children with autism in Indonesia has been increasing each year. Autism is a developmental disorder which can be diagnosed in childhood. One of the symptoms is the lack of communication skills. Music therapy is known as an effective treatment for children with autism. Music elements and structures create a good space for children with autism to express their feelings and communicate their thoughts. School-aged children are expected to be able to communicate non-verbally very well, but children with autism experience the difficulties of communicating non-verbally. The aim of this research is to analyze the significance of music therapy treatment to improve non-verbal communication tools for children with autism. This research informs teachers and parents on how music can be used as a media to communicate with children with autism. The qualitative method is used to analyze this research, while the result is described with the microanalysis technique. The result is measured specifically from the whole experiment, hours of every week, minutes of every session, and second of every moment. The samples taken are four school-aged children with autism in the age range of six to 11 years old. This research is conducted within four months started with observation, interview, literature research, and direct experiment. The result demonstrates that music therapy could be effectively used as a non-verbal communication tool for children with autism, such as changes of body gesture, eye contact, and facial expression.

Keywords: Autism, non-verbal communication, microanalysis, music therapy, school-aged children.

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1773 Comparison of the Effectiveness of Communication between the Traditional Lecture and IELS

Authors: A. Althobaiti, M. Munro

Abstract:

Communication and effective information exchange within technology has become a crucial part of delivering knowledge to students during the learning process. It enables better understanding, builds trust and respect, and increases the sharing of knowledge between students. This paper examines the communication between undergraduate students and their lecturers during the traditional lecture and when using the Interactive Electronic Lecture System (IELS). The IELS is an application that offers a set of components which support the effective communication between students and their peers and between students and their lecturers. Moreover, this paper highlights communication skills such as sender, receiver, channel and feedback. It will show how the IELS creates a rich communication environment between its users and how they communicate effectively. To examine and assess the effectiveness of communication, an experiment was conducted on groups of users; students and lecturers. The first group communicated in the traditional lecture while the second group communicated by means of the IELS application. The results show that there was more effective communication between the second group than the first.

Keywords: Communication, effective information exchange.

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1772 An Investigation into the Views of Gifted Children on the Effects of Computer and Information Technologies on Their Lives and Education

Authors: Ahmet Kurnaz, Eyup Yurt, Ümit Çiftci

Abstract:

In this study, too, an attempt was made to reveal the place and effects of information technologies on the lives and education of gifted children based on the views of gifted. To this end, the effects of information technologies on gifted are general skills, technology use, academic and social skills, and cooperative and personal skills were investigated. These skills were explored depending on whether or not gifted had their own computers, had internet connection at home, or how often they use the internet, average time period they spent at the computer, how often they played computer games and their use of social media. The study was conducted using the screening model with a quantitative approach. The sample of the study consisted of 129 gifted attending 5-12th classes in 12 provinces in different regions of Turkey. 64 of the participants were female while 65 were male. The research data were collected using the using computer of gifted and information technologies (UCIT) questionnaire which was developed by the researchers and given its final form after receiving expert view. As a result of the study, it was found that UCIT use improved foreign language speaking skills of gifted, enabled them to get to know and understand different cultures, and made use of computer and information technologies while they study. At the end of the study these result were obtained: Gifted have positive idea using computer and communication technology. There are differences whether using the internet about the ideas UCIT. But there are not differences whether having computer, inhabited city, grade level, having internet at home, daily and weekly internet usage durations, playing the computer and internet game, having Facebook and Twitter account about the UCIT. UCIT contribute to the development of gifted vocabulary, allows knowing and understand different cultures, developing foreign language speaking skills, gifted do not give up computer when they do their homework, improve their reading, listening, understanding and writing skills in a foreign language. Gifted children want to have transition to the use of tablets in education. They think UCIT facilitates doing their homework, contributes learning more information in a shorter time. They'd like to use computer-assisted instruction programs at courses. They think they will be more successful in the future if their computer skills are good. But gifted students prefer teacher instead of teaching with computers and they said that learning can be run from home without going to school.

Keywords: Gifted, using computer, communication technology.

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1771 Developing Leadership and Teamwork Skills of Pre-Service Teacher through Learning Camp

Authors: Sirimanee Banjong

Abstract:

This study aimed to 1) develop pre-service teachers’ leadership skills through camp-based learning, and 2) develop preservice teachers’ teamwork skills through camp-based learning. An applied research methodology was used. The target group was derived from a purposive selection. It involved 32 fourth-year students in Early Childhood Education Program enrolling a course entitled Seminar in Early Childhood Education provided during second semester of academic year 2013. The treatment was camp-based learning activities which applied a PDCA process including four stages: 1) plan, 2) do, 3) check, and 4) act. Research instruments were a learning camp program, a camp-based learning management plan, a 5-level assessment form for leadership skills and a 5-level assessment form for assessing teamwork skills. Data were analyzed using descriptive statistics. Results were: 1) pre-service teachers’ leadership skills yielded the before treatment average score at x= 3.4, S.D.=0.6 2and the after-treatment average score at x 4.29 , S.D.=0.66 pre-service teachers’ teamwork skills yielded the before-treatment average score at x=3.31, S.D.=0.60 and the after-treatment average score at x=4.42, S.D.=0.66 Both differences were statistically significant at the .05 level. Thus, the pre-service teachers’ leadership and teamwork skills were significantly improved through the camp-based learning approach.

Keywords: Learning camp, leadership skills, teamwork skills.

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1770 The Art of Leadership: Skills to Inspire the Team to Overcome Project Challenges and Achieve Their Goals

Authors: Maitham Al-Safwani

Abstract:

This paper highlights skills that a leader needs to acquire to lead a team successfully. With an appropriate vision and strategy, a team can be inspired, influenced and easily led. The importance of setting codes of conduct and establishing mutual agreements between the team members can help in minimizing issues and improving overall productivity. Leadership skills include the power of questioning (PoQ), effective communication, identification of team member responsibilities, and assessment of self and the team. This paper will highlight the impact of good leadership on work progress and overall team performance. The paper explains how leaders make correct decisions by avoiding hasty actions that could generate new errors, mistakes, and issues. The importance of positive expectations for the team is addressed in this paper that could result in efficient control of the work with better outcomes.

Keywords: Leadership, inspire, confidence, power of questioning, leader impacts.

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1769 Robot Technology Impact on Dyslexic Students’ English Learning

Authors: Khaled Hamdan, Abid Amorri, Fatima Hamdan

Abstract:

Involving students in English language learning process and achieving an adequate English language proficiency in the target language can be a great challenge for both teachers and students. This can prove even a far greater challenge to engage students with special needs (Dyslexia) if they have physical impairment and inadequate mastery of basic communicative language competence/proficiency in the target language. From this perspective, technology like robots can probably be used to enhance learning process for the special needs students who have extensive communication needs, who face continuous struggle to interact with their peers and teachers and meet academic requirements. Robots, precisely NAO, can probably provide them with the perfect opportunity to practice social and communication skills, and meet their English academic requirements. This research paper aims to identify to what extent robots can be used to improve students’ social interaction and communication skills and to understand the potential for robotics-based education in motivating and engaging UAEU dyslexic students to meet university requirements. To reach this end, the paper will explore several factors that come into play – Motion Level-involving cognitive activities, Interaction Level-involving language processing, Behavior Level -establishing a close relationship with the robot and Appraisal Level- focusing on dyslexia students’ achievement in the target language.

Keywords: Dyslexia, robot technology, motion, interaction, behavior and appraisal levels, social and communication skills.

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1768 EFL Learners- Perceptions of Computer-Mediated Communication (CMC) to Facilitate Communication in a Foreign Language

Authors: Lin, Huifen, Fang, Yueh-chiu

Abstract:

This study explores perceptions of English as a Foreign Language (EFL) learners on using computer mediated communication technology in their learner of English. The data consists of observations of both synchronous and asynchronous communication participants engaged in for over a period of 4 months, which included online, and offline communication protocols, open-ended interviews and reflection papers composed by participants. Content analysis of interview data and the written documents listed above, as well as, member check and triangulation techniques are the major data analysis strategies. The findings suggest that participants generally do not benefit from computer-mediated communication in terms of its effect in learning a foreign language. Participants regarded the nature of CMC as artificial, or pseudo communication that did not aid their authentic communicational skills in English. The results of this study sheds lights on insufficient and inconclusive findings, which most quantitative CMC studies previously generated.

Keywords: computer-mediated communication, EFL, writing

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1767 Lifelong Distance Learning and Skills Development: A Case Study Analysis in Greece

Authors: Eleni Giouli

Abstract:

Distance learning provides a flexible approach to education, enabling busy learners to complete their coursework at their own pace, on their own schedule, and from a convenient location. This flexibility combined with a series of other issues; make the benefits of lifelong distance learning numerous. The purpose of the paper is to investigate whether distance education can contribute to the improvement of adult skills in Greece, highlighting in this way the necessity of the lifelong distance learning. To investigate this goal, a questionnaire is constructed and analyzed based on responses from 3,016 attendees of lifelong distance learning programs in the e-learning of the National and Kapodistrian University of Athens in Greece. In order to do so, a series of relationships is examined including the effects of a) the gender, b) the previous educational level, c) the current employment status, and d) the method used in the distance learning program, on the development of new general, technical, administrative, social, cultural, entrepreneurial and green skills. The basic conclusions that emerge after using a binary logistic framework are that the following factors are critical in order to develop new skills: the gender, the education level and the educational method used in the lifelong distance learning program. The skills more significantly affected by those factors are the acquiring new skills in general, as well as acquiring general, language and cultural, entrepreneurial and green skills, while for technical and social skills only gender and educational method play a crucial role. Moreover, routine skills and social skills are not affected by the four factors included in the analysis.

Keywords: Adult skills, distance learning, education, lifelong learning.

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1766 Understanding Work Integrated Learning in ICT: A Systems Perspective

Authors: Anneke Harmse, Roelien Goede

Abstract:

Information and communication technology (ICT) is essential to the operation of business, and create many employment opportunities. High volumes of students graduate in ICT however students struggle to find job placement. A discrepancy exists between graduate skills and industry skill requirements. To address the need for ICT skills required, universities must create programs to meet the demands of a changing ICT industry. This requires a partnership between industry, universities and other stakeholders. This situation may be viewed as a critical systems thinking problem situation as there are various role players each with their own needs and requirements. Jackson states a typical critical systems methods has a pluralistic nature. This paper explores the applicability and suitability of Maslow and Dooyeweerd to guide understanding and make recommendations for change in ICT WIL, to foster an all-inclusive understanding of the situation by stakeholders. The above methods provide tools for understanding softer issues beyond the skills required. The study findings suggest that besides skills requirements, a deeper understanding and empowering students from being a student to a professional need to be understood and addressed.

Keywords: Dooyeweerd, Maslow, Work Integrated Learning.

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1765 Integrating Generic Skills into Disciplinary Curricula

Authors: Sitalakshmi Venkatraman, Fiona Wahr, Anthony de Souza-Daw, Samuel Kaspi

Abstract:

There is a growing emphasis on generic skills in higher education to match the changing skill-set requirements of the labour market. However, researchers and policy makers have not arrived at a consensus on the generic skills that actually contribute towards workplace employability and performance that complement and/or underpin discipline-specific graduate attributes. In order to strengthen the qualifications framework, a range of ‘generic’ learning outcomes have been considered for students undergoing higher education programs and among them it is necessary to have the fundamental generic skills such as literacy and numeracy at a level appropriate to the qualification type. This warrants for curriculum design approaches to contextualise the form and scope of these fundamental generic skills for supporting both students’ learning engagement in the course, as well as the graduate attributes required for employability and to progress within their chosen profession. Little research is reported in integrating such generic skills into discipline-specific learning outcomes. This paper explores the literature of the generic skills required for graduates from the discipline of Information Technology (IT) in relation to an Australian higher education institution. The paper presents the rationale of a proposed Bachelor of IT curriculum designed to contextualize the learning of these generic skills within the students’ discipline studies.

Keywords: Curriculum, employability, generic skills, graduate attributes, higher education, information technology.

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1764 Actual Nursing Competency among Nurses in Hospital in Vietnam

Authors: Do Thi Ha, Khanitta Nuntaboot

Abstract:

Background: Competency of nurses is vital to safe nursing practice as well as essential component to drive quality of nursing services. There exists little up to date information concerning actual competency among Vietnamese nurses. Purposes: The purpose of this study is to identify the actual nursing competency among nurses in clinical settings in Vietnam. Methods: A qualitative study, ethnographic method, comprised of the participant-observation, in-depth interview, and focus group discussion with multidisciplinary groups of nurses employing in Cho Ray hospital, Vietnam, managers/administrators, nurse teachers, medical doctors, other health care providers, patients and family members which derived from purposeful sampling technique. Content analysis was used for data analysis. Results: Five essential themes of nursing competencies among nurses were identified include (1) knowledge, (2) skills, (3) attitude and value-based nursing practice, (4) legal and ethical competencies, and (5) transcultural competencies. Basic and advanced knowledge were identified as further two dimensions of knowledge. There were five sub themes identified as further dimensions of skills include technical skills, communication skills, organizing and management skills, teamwork and interrelationship, and critical thinking skills. Conclusions: The findings from this study provide valuable information and understanding of the actual competency among nurses in clinical settings in Vietnam. It is expected that this understanding would assist in developing a guide to nursing education and training, nursing practice and relevant policy regulation used for promoting nursing competency among nurses.

Keywords: Nursing competency, qualitative design, ethnographic method, Vietnam.

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1763 Study of Pre-Handwriting Factors Necessary for Successful Handwriting in Children

Authors: Lalitchandra J. Shah, Katarzyna Bialek, Melinda L. Clarke, Jessica L. Jansson

Abstract:

Handwriting is essential to academic success; however, the current literature is limited in the identification of pre-handwriting skills. The purpose of this study was to identify the pre-handwriting skills, which occupational therapy practitioners deem important to handwriting success, as well as those which aid in intervention planning. The online survey instrument consisted of 33 questions that assessed various skills related to the development of handwriting, as well as captured demographic information. Both occupational therapists and occupational therapy assistants were included in the survey study. The survey found that the respondents were in agreement that purposeful scribbling, the ability of a child to copy (vertical/horizontal lines, circle, squares, and triangles), imitating an oblique cross, cognitive skills (attention, praxis, self-regulation, sequencing), grasp patterns, hand dominance, in hand manipulation skills (shift, translation, rotation), bilateral integration, stabilization of paper, crossing midline, and visual perception were important indicators of handwriting readiness. The results of the survey support existing research regarding the skills necessary for the successful development of handwriting in children.

Keywords: Development, handwriting, occupational therapy, visual perceptual skills.

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1762 Promoting Collaborative Learning in Software Engineering by Adapting the PBL Strategy

Authors: Charlie Y. Shim, Mina Choi, Jung Y. Kim

Abstract:

Software engineering education not only embraces technical skills of software development but also necessitates communication and interaction among learners. In this paper, it is proposed to adapt the PBL methodology that is especially designed to be integrated into software engineering classroom in order to promote collaborative learning environment. This approach helps students better understand the significance of social aspects and provides a systematic framework to enhance teamwork skills. The adaptation of PBL facilitates the transition to an innovative software development environment where cooperative learning can be actualized.

Keywords: problem-based learning, software engineering, software process models, teamwork.

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1761 An Electronic and Performance Test for the Applicants to Faculty of Education for Early Childhood in Egypt for Measuring the Skills of Teacher Students

Authors: Ahmed Amin Mousa, Gehan Azam

Abstract:

The current study presents an electronic test to measure teaching skills. This test is a part of the admission system of the Faculty of Education for Early Childhood, Cairo University. The test has been prepared to evaluate university students who apply for admission the Faculty. It measures some social and physiological skills which are important for successful teachers, such as emotional adjustment and problem solving; moreover, the extent of their love for children and their capability to interact with them. The test has been approved by 13 experts. Finally, it has been introduced to 1,100 students during the admission system of the academic year 2016/2017. The results showed that most of the applicants have an auditory learning style. In addition, 97% of them have the minimum requirement skills for teaching children.

Keywords: Electronic test, early childhood, skills, teacher student.

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1760 Dental Students’ Attitude towards Problem-Based Learning before and after Implementing 3D Electronic Dental Models

Authors: Hai Ming Wong, Kuen Wai Ma, Lavender Yu Xin Yang, Yanqi Yang

Abstract:

Objectives: In recent years, the Faculty of Dentistry of the University of Hong Kong have extended the implementation of 3D electronic models (e-models) into problem-based learning (PBL) of the Bachelor of Dental Surgery (BDS) curriculum, aiming at mutual enhancement of PBL teaching quality and the students’ skills in using e-models. This study focuses on the effectiveness of e-models serving as a tool to enhance the students’ skills and competences in PBL. Methods: The questionnaire surveys are conducted to measure 50 fourth-year BDS students’ attitude change between beginning and end of blended PBL tutorials. The response rate of this survey is 100%. Results: The results of this study show the students’ agreement on enhancement of their learning experience after e-model implementation and their expectation to have more blended PBL courses in the future. The potential of e-models in cultivating students’ self-learning skills reduces their dependence on others, while improving their communication skills to argue about pros and cons of different treatment options. The students’ independent thinking ability and problem solving skills are promoted by e-model implementation, resulting in better decision making in treatment planning. Conclusion: It is important for future dental education curriculum planning to cope with the students’ needs, and offer support in the form of software, hardware and facilitators’ assistance for better e-model implementation.

Keywords: Problem-Based learning, curriculum, dental education, 3-D electronic models.

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1759 A Multilingual Virtual Simulated Patient Framework for Training Primary Health Care Students

Authors: Juan L. Castro, Maria I. NavarroVictor Lopez, Eduardo M. Eisman, Jose M. Zurita

Abstract:

This paper describes the Multilingual Virtual Simulated Patient framework. It has been created to train the social skills and testing the knowledge of primary health care medical students. The framework generates conversational agents which perform in serveral languages as virtual simulated patients that help to improve the communication and diagnosis skills of the students complementing their training process.

Keywords: Medical training, conversational agents, patient modeling.

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1758 Informal Education and Developing Entrepreneurial Skills among Farmers in Malaysia

Authors: Golnaz Rezai, Zainalabidin Mohamed, Mad Nasir Shamsudin

Abstract:

The Malaysian government is promoting entrepreneurship development skills amongst farmers through informal courses. These courses will concentrate on teaching managerial skills as inevitable means for small farms to succeed by making farmers more creative and innovative. Therefore it is important to assess the effect of informal agri-entrepreneurial training in developing entrepreneurship among the farmers in Malaysia. Seven hundred and ninety six farmers (796) farmers were interviewed via structured questionnaire to define their opinion on whether the current informal educational and training establishments are sufficient to teach and develop entrepreneurial skills. Factor analysis and logic regression analysis were used to determine the motivating factors and predict their impact on the development of entrepreneurial skills. The result from the factor analysis led us to investigate the association between these factors and farmers- opinions about the development of entrepreneurial skills and traits through participating in informal entrepreneurship training or education. The outcome has shown us that the importance of informal training to promote entrepreneurship among farmers is crucial. The training should be intensified to encourage farmers to not only focus on the modern technologies but also on the fundamental changes in their attitude towards agriculture as a business. DOA: KMO: Kaiser- Meyer- Olkin Test MOA: Ministry of Agriculture NMP: Ninth Malaysia Plan NAP: Third National Agricultural Policy (2000-2010)

Keywords: Entrepreneurial skills, farmers, informal education, Malaysia

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1757 Students' Perception of Virtual Learning Environment (VLE) Skills in Setting up the Simulator Welding Technology

Authors: Mohd Afif Md Nasir, Faizal Amin NurYunus, Jamaluddin Hashim, Abd Samad Hassan Basari, A. Halim Sahelan

Abstract:

The aim of this study is to identify the suitability of Virtual Learning Environment (VLE) in welding simulator application towards Computer-Based Training (CBT) in developing skills upon new students at the Advanced Technology Training Center (ADTEC) Batu Pahat, Johor, Malaysia and GIATMARA, Batu Pahat, Johor, Malaysia. The significance of the study is to create a computer-based skills development approach in welding technology among new students in ADTEC and GIATMARA as well as to cultivate the elements of general skills among them. This study is also important in elevating the number of individual knowledge workers (K-workers) working in manufacturing industry in order to achieve a national vision which is to be an industrial nation in the year of 2020. The design of the study is a survey type of research which using questionnaires as the instruments and some 136 students from ADTEC and GIATMARA were interviewed. Descriptive analysis is used to identify the frequency and mean values. The findings of the study show that the welding technology has developed skills in the students because of the application of VLE simulated at a high level and the respondents agreed that the skills could be embedded through the application of the VLE simulator. In summary, the VLE simulator is suitable in welding skills development training in terms of exposing new students with the relevant characteristics of welding skills and at the same time spurring the students’ interest towards learning more about the skills.

Keywords: Computer-Based Training (CBT), knowledge workers (K-workers), virtual learning environment, welding simulator, welding technology.

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1756 Identification of Training Topics for the Improvement of the Relevant Cognitive Skills of Technical Operators in the Railway Domain

Authors: Giulio Nisoli, Jonas Brüngger, Karin Hostettler, Nicole Stoller, Katrin Fischer

Abstract:

Technical operators in the railway domain are experts responsible for the supervisory control of the railway power grid as well as of the railway tunnels. The technical systems used to master these demanding tasks are constantly increasing in their degree of automation. It becomes therefore difficult for technical operators to maintain the control over the technical systems and the processes of their job. In particular, the operators must have the necessary experience and knowledge in dealing with a malfunction situation or unexpected event. For this reason, it is of growing importance that the skills relevant for the execution of the job are maintained and further developed beyond the basic training they receive, where they are educated in respect of technical knowledge and the work with guidelines. Training methods aimed at improving the cognitive skills needed by technical operators are still missing and must be developed. Goals of the present study were to identify which are the relevant cognitive skills of technical operators in the railway domain and to define which topics should be addressed by the training of these skills. Observational interviews were conducted in order to identify the main tasks and the organization of the work of technical operators as well as the technical systems used for the execution of their job. Based on this analysis, the most demanding tasks of technical operators could be identified and described. The cognitive skills involved in the execution of these tasks are those, which need to be trained. In order to identify and analyze these cognitive skills a cognitive task analysis (CTA) was developed. CTA specifically aims at identifying the cognitive skills that employees implement when performing their own tasks. The identified cognitive skills of technical operators were summarized and grouped in training topics. For every training topic, specific goals were defined. The goals regard the three main categories; knowledge, skills and attitude to be trained in every training topic. Based on the results of this study, it is possible to develop specific training methods to train the relevant cognitive skills of the technical operators.

Keywords: Cognitive skills, cognitive task analysis, technical operators in the railway domain, training topics.

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