Commenced in January 2007
Frequency: Monthly
Edition: International
Paper Count: 95

Search results for: Teaching and Learning

95 Eye Tracking: Biometric Evaluations of Instructional Materials for Improved Learning

Authors: Janet Holland

Abstract:

Eye tracking is a great way to triangulate multiple data sources for deeper, more complete knowledge of how instructional materials are really being used and emotional connections made. Using sensor based biometrics provides a detailed local analysis in real time expanding our ability to collect science based data for a more comprehensive level of understanding, not previously possible, for teaching and learning. The knowledge gained will be used to make future improvements to instructional materials, tools, and interactions. The literature has been examined and a preliminary pilot test was implemented to develop a methodology for research in Instructional Design and Technology. Eye tracking now offers the addition of objective metrics obtained from eye tracking and other biometric data collection with analysis for a fresh perspective.

Keywords: Area of interest, eye tracking, biometrics, fixation, fixation count, fixation sequence, fixation time, gaze points, heat map, saccades, time to first fixation.

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94 Extending the Flipped Classroom Approach: Using Technology in Module Delivery to Students of English Language and Literature at the British University in Egypt

Authors: Azza Taha Zaki

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Technology-enhanced teaching has been in the limelight since the 90s when educators started investigating and experimenting with using computers in the classroom as a means of building 21st. century skills and motivating students. The concept of technology-enhanced strategies in education is kaleidoscopic! It has meant different things to different educators. For the purpose of this paper, however, it will be used to refer to the diverse technology-based strategies used to support and enrich the flipped learning process, in the classroom and outside. The paper will investigate how technology is put in the service of teaching and learning to improve the students’ learning experience as manifested in students’ attendance and engagement, achievement rates and finally, students’ projects at the end of the semester. The results will be supported by a student survey about relevant specific aspects of their learning experience in the modules in the study.

Keywords: Attendance, British University, Egypt, flipped, student achievement, student-centred, student engagement, students’ projects.

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93 Identifying Game Variables from Students’ Surveys for Prototyping Games for Learning

Authors: N. Ismail, O. Thammajinda, U. Thongpanya

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Games-based learning (GBL) has become increasingly important in teaching and learning. This paper explains the first two phases (analysis and design) of a GBL development project, ending up with a prototype design based on students’ and teachers’ perceptions. The two phases are part of a full cycle GBL project aiming to help secondary school students in Thailand in their study of Comprehensive Sex Education (CSE). In the course of the study, we invited 1,152 students to complete questionnaires and interviewed 12 secondary school teachers in focus groups. This paper found that GBL can serve students in their learning about CSE, enabling them to gain understanding of their sexuality, develop skills, including critical thinking skills and interact with others (peers, teachers, etc.) in a safe environment. The objectives of this paper are to outline the development of GBL variables from the research question(s) into the developers’ flow chart, to be responsive to the GBL beneficiaries’ preferences and expectations, and to help in answering the research questions. This paper details the steps applied to generate GBL variables that can feed into a game flow chart to develop a GBL prototype. In our approach, we detailed two models: (1) Game Elements Model (GEM) and (2) Game Object Model (GOM). There are three outcomes of this research – first, to achieve the objectives and benefits of GBL in learning, game design has to start with the research question(s) and the challenges to be resolved as research outcomes. Second, aligning the educational aims with engaging GBL end users (students) within the data collection phase to inform the game prototype with the game variables is essential to address the answer/solution to the research question(s). Third, for efficient GBL to bridge the gap between pedagogy and technology and in order to answer the research questions via technology (i.e. GBL) and to minimise the isolation between the pedagogists “P” and technologist “T”, several meetings and discussions need to take place within the team.

Keywords: Games-based learning, design, engagement, pedagogy, preferences, prototype, variables.

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92 The Importance of Changing the Traditional Mode of Higher Education in Bangladesh: Creating Huge Job Opportunities for Home and Abroad

Authors: M. M. Shahidul Hassan, Omiya Hassan

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Bangladesh has set its goal to reach upper middle-income country status by 2024. To attain this status, the country must satisfy the World Bank requirement of achieving minimum Gross National Income (GNI). Number of youth job seekers in the country is increasing. University graduates are looking for decent jobs. So, the vital issue of this country is to understand how the GNI and jobs can be increased. The objective of this paper is to address these issues and find ways to create more job opportunities for youths at home and abroad which will increase the country’s GNI. The paper studies proportion of different goods Bangladesh exported, and also the percentage of employment in different sectors. The data used here for the purpose of analysis have been collected from the available literature. These data are then plotted and analyzed. Through these studies, it is concluded that growth in sectors like agricultural, ready-made garments (RMG), jute industries and fisheries are declining and the business community is not interested in setting up capital-intensive industries. Under this situation, the country needs to explore other business opportunities for a higher economic growth rate. Knowledge can substitute the physical resource. Since the country consists of the large youth population, higher education will play a key role in economic development. It now needs graduates with higher-order skills with innovative quality. Such dispositions demand changes in a university’s curriculum, teaching and assessment method which will function young generations as active learners and creators. By bringing these changes in higher education, a knowledge-based society can be created. The application of such knowledge and creativity will then become the commodity of Bangladesh which will help to reach its goal as an upper middle-income country.

Keywords: Bangladesh, economic sectors, economic growth, higher education, knowledge-based economy, massifcation of higher education, teaching and learning, universities’ role in society.

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91 Motivational Orientation of the Methodical System of Teaching Mathematics in Secondary Schools

Authors: M. Rodionov, Z. Dedovets

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The article analyses the composition and structure of the motivationally oriented methodological system of teaching mathematics (purpose, content, methods, forms, and means of teaching), viewed through the prism of the student as the subject of the learning process. Particular attention is paid to the problem of methods of teaching mathematics, which are represented in the form of an ordered triad of attributes corresponding to the selected characteristics. A systematic analysis of possible options and their methodological interpretation enriched existing ideas about known methods and technologies of training, and significantly expanded their nomenclature by including previously unstudied combinations of characteristics. In addition, examples outlined in this article illustrate the possibilities of enhancing the motivational capacity of a particular method or technology in the real learning practice of teaching mathematics through more free goal-setting and varying the conditions of the problem situations. The authors recommend the implementation of different strategies according to their characteristics in teaching and learning mathematics in secondary schools.

Keywords: Education, methodological system, teaching of mathematics, teachers, lesson, students motivation, secondary school.

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90 The Boundary Element Method in Excel for Teaching Vector Calculus and Simulation

Authors: Stephen Kirkup

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This paper discusses the implementation of the boundary element method (BEM) on an Excel spreadsheet and how it can be used in teaching vector calculus and simulation. There are two separate spreadheets, within which Laplace equation is solved by the BEM in two dimensions (LIBEM2) and axisymmetric three dimensions (LBEMA). The main algorithms are implemented in the associated programming language within Excel, Visual Basic for Applications (VBA). The BEM only requires a boundary mesh and hence it is a relatively accessible method. The BEM in the open spreadsheet environment is demonstrated as being useful as an aid to teaching and learning. The application of the BEM implemented on a spreadsheet for educational purposes in introductory vector calculus and simulation is explored. The development of assignment work is discussed, and sample results from student work are given. The spreadsheets were found to be useful tools in developing the students’ understanding of vector calculus and in simulating heat conduction.

Keywords: Boundary element method, laplace equation, vector calculus, simulation, education.

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89 Availability, Accessibility and Utilization of Information and Communication Technology in Teaching and Learning Islamic Studies in Colleges of Education, North-Eastern, Nigeria

Authors: Bello Ali

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The use of Information and Communication Technology (ICT) in tertiary institutions by lecturers and students has become a necessity for the enhancement of quality teaching and learning. This study examined availability, accessibility and utilization of ICT in Teaching-Learning Islamic Studies in Colleges of Education, North-East, Nigeria. The study adopted multi-stage sampling technique, in which, five out of the eleven Colleges of Education (both Federal and State owned) were purposively selected for the study. Primary data was drawn from the respondents by the use of questionnaire, interviews and observations. The results of the study, generally, indicate that the availability and accessibility to ICT facilities in Colleges of Education in North-East, Nigeria, especially in teaching/learning delivery of Islamic studies were relatively inadequate and rare to lecturers and students. The study further reveals that the respondents’ level of utilization of ICT is low and only few computer packages and internet services were involved in the ICT utilization, which is yet to reach the real expected situation of the globalization and advancement in the application of ICT if compared to other parts of the world, as far as the teaching and learning of Islamic studies is concerned. Observations and conclusion were drawn from the findings and finally, recommendations on how to improve on ICT availability, accessibility and utilization in teaching/ learning were suggested.

Keywords: Accessibility, availability, college of education, ICT, Islamic Studies, learning, North-Eastern, teaching, utilization.

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88 Gender Differences in Biology Academic Performances among Foundation Students of PERMATApintar® National Gifted Center

Authors: N. Nor Azman, M. F. Kamarudin, S. I. Ong, N. Maaulot

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PERMATApintar® National Gifted Center is, to the author’s best of knowledge, the first center in Malaysia that provides a platform for Malaysian talented students with high ability in thinking. This center has built a teaching and learning biology curriculum that suits the ability of these gifted students. The level of PERMATApintar® biology curriculum is basically higher than the national biology curriculum. Here, the foundation students are exposed to the PERMATApintar® biology curriculum at the age of as early as 11 years old. This center practices a 4-time-a-year examination system to monitor the academic performances of the students. Generally, most of the time, male students show no or low interest towards biology subject compared to female students. This study is to investigate the association of students’ gender and their academic performances in biology examination. A total of 39 students’ scores in twelve sets of biology examinations in 3 years have been collected and analyzed by using the statistical analysis. Based on the analysis, there are no significant differences between male and female students against the biology academic performances with a significant level of p = 0.05. This indicates that gender is not associated with the scores of biology examinations among the students. Another result showed that the average score for male studenta was higher than the female students. Future research can be done by comparing the biology academic achievement in Malaysian National Examination (Sijil Pelajaran Malaysia, SPM) between the Foundation 3 students (Grade 9) and Level 2 students (Grade 11) with similar PERMATApintar® biology curriculum.

Keywords: Academic performances, biology, gender differences, gifted students.

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87 Assessing the Impact of High Fidelity Human Patient Simulation on Teamwork among Nursing, Medicine and Pharmacy Undergraduate Students

Authors: S. MacDonald, A. Manuel, R. Law, N. Bandruak, A. Dubrowski, V. Curran, J. Smith-Young, K. Simmons, A. Warren

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High fidelity human patient simulation has been used for many years by health sciences education programs to foster critical thinking, engage learners, improve confidence, improve communication, and enhance psychomotor skills. Unfortunately, there is a paucity of research on the use of high fidelity human patient simulation to foster teamwork among nursing, medicine and pharmacy undergraduate students. This study compared the impact of high fidelity and low fidelity simulation education on teamwork among nursing, medicine and pharmacy students. For the purpose of this study, two innovative teaching scenarios were developed based on the care of an adult patient experiencing acute anaphylaxis: one high fidelity using a human patient simulator and one low fidelity using case based discussions. A within subjects, pretest-posttest, repeated measures design was used with two-treatment levels and random assignment of individual subjects to teams of two or more professions. A convenience sample of twenty-four (n=24) undergraduate students participated, including: nursing (n=11), medicine (n=9), and pharmacy (n=4). The Interprofessional Teamwork Questionnaire was used to assess for changes in students’ perception of their functionality within the team, importance of interprofessional collaboration, comprehension of roles, and confidence in communication and collaboration. Student satisfaction was also assessed. Students reported significant improvements in their understanding of the importance of interprofessional teamwork and of the roles of nursing and medicine on the team after participation in both the high fidelity and the low fidelity simulation. However, only participants in the high fidelity simulation reported a significant improvement in their ability to function effectively as a member of the team. All students reported that both simulations were a meaningful learning experience and all students would recommend both experiences to other students. These findings suggest there is merit in both high fidelity and low fidelity simulation as a teaching and learning approach to foster teamwork among undergraduate nursing, medicine and pharmacy students. However, participation in high fidelity simulation may provide a more realistic opportunity to practice and function as an effective member of the interprofessional health care team.

Keywords: Acute anaphylaxis, high fidelity human patient simulation, low fidelity simulation, interprofessional education.

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86 Teaching Turn-Taking Rules and Pragmatic Principles to Empower EFL Students and Enhance Their Learning in Speaking Modules

Authors: O. F. Elkommos

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Teaching and learning EFL speaking modules is one of the most challenging productive modules for both instructors and learners. In a student-centered interactive communicative language teaching approach, learners and instructors should be aware of the fact that the target language must be taught as/for communication. The student must be empowered by tools that will work on more than one level of their communicative competence. Communicative learning will need a teaching and learning methodology that will address the goal. Teaching turn-taking rules, pragmatic principles and speech acts will enhance students' sociolinguistic competence, strategic competence together with discourse competence. Sociolinguistic competence entails the mastering of speech act conventions and illocutionary acts of refusing, agreeing/disagreeing; emotive acts like, thanking, apologizing, inviting, offering; directives like, ordering, requesting, advising, and hinting, among others. Strategic competence includes enlightening students’ consciousness of the various particular turn-taking systemic rules of organizing techniques of opening and closing conversation, adjacency pairs, interrupting, back-channeling, asking for/giving opinion, agreeing/disagreeing, using natural fillers for pauses, gaps, speaker select, self-select, and silence among others. Students will have the tools to manage a conversation. Students are engaged in opportunities of experiencing the natural language not as a mere extra student talking time but rather an empowerment of knowing and using the strategies. They will have the component items they need to use as well as the opportunity to communicate in the target language using topics of their interest and choice. This enhances students' communicative abilities. Available websites and textbooks now use one or more of these tools of turn-taking or pragmatics. These will be students' support in self-study in their independent learning study hours. This will be their reinforcement practice on e-Learning interactive activities. The students' target is to be able to communicate the intended meaning to an addressee that is in turn able to infer that intended meaning. The combination of these tools will be assertive and encouraging to the student to beat the struggle with what to say, how to say it, and when to say it. Teaching the rules, principles and techniques is an act of awareness raising method engaging students in activities that will lead to their pragmatic discourse competence. The aim of the paper is to show how the suggested pragmatic model will empower students with tools and systems that would support their learning. Supporting students with turn taking rules, speech act theory, applying both to texts and practical analysis and using it in speaking classes empowers students’ pragmatic discourse competence and assists them to understand language and its context. They become more spontaneous and ready to learn the discourse pragmatic dimension of the speaking techniques and suitable content. Students showed a better performance and a good motivation to learn. The model is therefore suggested for speaking modules in EFL classes.

Keywords: Communicative competence, EFL, empowering learners, enhance learning, speech acts, teaching speaking, turn-taking, learner centered, pragmatics.

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85 Leveraging Reasoning through Discourse: A Case Study in Secondary Mathematics Classrooms

Authors: Cory A. Bennett

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Teaching and learning through the use of discourse support students’ conceptual understanding by attending to key concepts and relationships. One discourse structure used in primary classrooms is number talks wherein students mentally calculate, discuss, and reason about the appropriateness and efficiency of their strategies. In the secondary mathematics classroom, the mathematics understudy does not often lend itself to mental calculations yet learning to reason, and articulate reasoning, is central to learning mathematics. This qualitative case study discusses how one secondary school in the Middle East adapted the number talk protocol for secondary mathematics classrooms. Several challenges in implementing ‘reasoning talks’ became apparent including shifting current discourse protocols and practices to a more student-centric model, accurately recording and probing student thinking, and specifically attending to reasoning rather than computations.

Keywords: Discourse, reasoning, secondary mathematics, teacher development.

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84 Teachers Leadership Dimension in History Learning

Authors: Lee Bih Ni, Zulfhikar Rabe, Nurul Asyikin Hassan

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The Ministry of Education Malaysia dynamically and drastically made the subject of History mandatory to be in force in 2013. This is in recognition of the nation's heritage and treasures in maintaining true facts and information for future generations of the State. History reveals the civilization of a nation and the fact of national cultural heritage. Civilization needs to be preserved as a legacy of sovereign heritage. Today's generation is the catalyst for future heirs who will support the principle and direction of the country. In line with the National Education Philosophy that aims to shape the potential development of individuals holistically and uniquely in order to produce a balanced and harmonious student in terms of intellectual, spiritual, emotional and physical. Hence, understanding the importance of studying the history subject as a pillar of identity and the history of nationhood is to be a priority in the pursuit of knowledge and empowering the spirit of statehood that is nurtured through continuous learning at school. Judging from the aspect of teacher leadership role in integrating history in a combined way based on Teacher Education Philosophy. It empowers the teaching profession towards the teacher to support noble character. It also supports progressive and scientific views. Teachers are willing to uphold the State's aspirations and celebrate the country's cultural heritage. They guarantee individual development and maintain a united, democratic, progressive and disciplined society. Teacher's role as a change and leadership agent in education begins in the classroom through formal or informal educational processes. This situation is expanded in schools, communities and countries. The focus of this paper is on the role of teacher leadership influencing the effectiveness of teaching and learning history in the classroom environment. Leadership guides to teachers' perceptions on the role of teacher leadership, teaching leadership, and the teacher leadership role and effective teacher leadership role. Discussions give emphasis on aspects of factors affecting the classroom environment, forming the classroom agenda, effective classroom implementation methods, suitable climate for historical learning and teacher challenges in implicating the effectiveness of teaching and learning processes.

Keywords: Teacher leadership, leadership lessons, effective classroom, effective teacher.

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83 A Case Study on Experiences of Clinical Preceptors in the Undergraduate Nursing Program

Authors: Jacqueline M. Dias, Amina A Khowaja

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Clinical education is one of the most important components of a nursing curriculum as it develops the students’ cognitive, psychomotor and affective skills. Clinical teaching ensures the integration of knowledge into practice. As the numbers of students increase in the field of nursing coupled with the faculty shortage, clinical preceptors are the best choice to ensure student learning in the clinical settings. The clinical preceptor role has been introduced in the undergraduate nursing programme. In Pakistan, this role emerged due to a faculty shortage. Initially, two clinical preceptors were hired. This study will explore clinical preceptors views and experiences of precepting Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BScN) students in an undergraduate program. A case study design was used. As case studies explore a single unit of study such as a person or very small number of subjects; the two clinical preceptors were fundamental to the study and served as a single case. Qualitative data were obtained through an iterative process using in depth interviews and written accounts from reflective journals that were kept by the clinical preceptors. The findings revealed that the clinical preceptors were dedicated to their roles and responsibilities. Another, key finding was that clinical preceptors’ prior knowledge and clinical experience were valuable assets to perform their role effectively. The clinical preceptors found their new role innovative and challenging; it was stressful at the same time. Findings also revealed that in the clinical agencies there were unclear expectations and role ambiguity. Furthermore, clinical preceptors had difficulty integrating theory into practice in the clinical area and they had difficulty in giving feedback to the students. Although this study is localized to one university, generalizations can be drawn from the results. The key findings indicate that the role of a clinical preceptor is demanding and stressful. Clinical preceptors need preparation prior to precepting students on clinicals. Also, institutional support is fundamental for their acceptance. This paper focuses on the views and experiences of clinical preceptors undertaking a newly established role and resonates with the literature. The following recommendations are drawn to strengthen the role of the clinical preceptors: A structured program for clinical preceptors is needed along with mentorship. Clinical preceptors should be provided with formal training in teaching and learning with emphasis on clinical teaching and giving feedback to students. Additionally, for improving integration of theory into practice, clinical modules should be provided ahead of the clinical. In spite of all the challenges, ten more clinical preceptors have been hired as the faculty shortage continues to persist.

Keywords: Baccalaureate nursing education, clinical education, clinical preceptors, nursing curriculum.

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82 Investigating the Dynamics of Knowledge Acquisition in Learning Using Differential Equations

Authors: Gilbert Makanda, Roelf Sypkens

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A mathematical model for knowledge acquisition in teaching and learning is proposed. In this study we adopt the mathematical model that is normally used for disease modelling into teaching and learning. We derive mathematical conditions which facilitate knowledge acquisition. This study compares the effects of dropping out of the course at early stages with later stages of learning. The study also investigates effect of individual interaction and learning from other sources to facilitate learning. The study fits actual data to a general mathematical model using Matlab ODE45 and lsqnonlin to obtain a unique mathematical model that can be used to predict knowledge acquisition. The data used in this study was obtained from the tutorial test results for mathematics 2 students from the Central University of Technology, Free State, South Africa in the department of Mathematical and Physical Sciences. The study confirms already known results that increasing dropout rates and forgetting taught concepts reduce the population of knowledgeable students. Increasing teaching contacts and access to other learning materials facilitate knowledge acquisition. The effect of increasing dropout rates is more enhanced in the later stages of learning than earlier stages. The study opens up a new direction in further investigations in teaching and learning using differential equations.

Keywords: Differential equations, knowledge acquisition, least squares nonlinear, dynamical systems.

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81 Learning Object Interface Adapted to the Learner's Learning Style

Authors: Zenaide Carvalho da Silva, Leandro Rodrigues Ferreira, Andrey Ricardo Pimentel

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Learning styles (LS) refer to the ways and forms that the student prefers to learn in the teaching and learning process. Each student has their own way of receiving and processing information throughout the learning process. Therefore, knowing their LS is important to better understand their individual learning preferences, and also, understand why the use of some teaching methods and techniques give better results with some students, while others it does not. We believe that knowledge of these styles enables the possibility of making propositions for teaching; thus, reorganizing teaching methods and techniques in order to allow learning that is adapted to the individual needs of the student. Adapting learning would be possible through the creation of online educational resources adapted to the style of the student. In this context, this article presents the structure of a learning object interface adaptation based on the LS. The structure created should enable the creation of the adapted learning object according to the student's LS and contributes to the increase of student’s motivation in the use of a learning object as an educational resource.

Keywords: Adaptation, interface, learning object, learning style.

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80 Unpacking Chilean Preservice Teachers’ Beliefs on Practicum Experiences through Digital Stories

Authors: Claudio Díaz, Mabel Ortiz

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An EFL teacher education programme in Chile takes five years to train a future teacher of English. Preservice teachers are prepared to learn an advanced level of English and teach the language from 5th to 12th grade in the Chilean educational system. In the context of their first EFL Methodology course in year four, preservice teachers have to create a five-minute digital story that starts from a critical incident they have experienced as teachers-to-be during their observations or interventions in the schools. A critical incident can be defined as a happening, a specific incident or event either observed by them or involving them. The happening sparks their thinking and may make them subsequently think differently about the particular event. When they create their digital stories, preservice teachers put technology, teaching practice and theory together to narrate a story that is complemented by still images, moving images, text, sound effects and music. The story should be told as a personal narrative, which explains the critical incident. This presentation will focus on the creation process of 50 Chilean preservice teachers’ digital stories highlighting the critical incidents they started their stories. It will also unpack preservice teachers’ beliefs and reflections when approaching their teaching practices in schools. These beliefs will be coded and categorized through content analysis to evidence preservice teachers’ most rooted conceptions about English teaching and learning in Chilean schools. The findings seem to indicate that preservice teachers’ beliefs are strongly mediated by contextual and affective factors.

Keywords: Beliefs, Digital stories, Preservice teachers, Practicum.

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79 Developing Creative and Critically Reflective Digital Learning Communities

Authors: W. S. Barber, S. L. King

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This paper is a qualitative case study analysis of the development of a fully online learning community of graduate students through arts-based community building activities. With increasing numbers and types of online learning spaces, it is incumbent upon educators to continue to push the edge of what best practices look like in digital learning environments. In digital learning spaces, instructors can no longer be seen as purveyors of content knowledge to be examined at the end of a set course by a final test or exam. The rapid and fluid dissemination of information via Web 3.0 demands that we reshape our approach to teaching and learning, from one that is content-focused to one that is process-driven. Rather than having instructors as formal leaders, today’s digital learning environments require us to share expertise, as it is the collective experiences and knowledge of all students together with the instructors that help to create a very different kind of learning community. This paper focuses on innovations pursued in a 36 hour 12 week graduate course in higher education entitled “Critical and Reflective Practice”. The authors chronicle their journey to developing a fully online learning community (FOLC) by emphasizing the elements of social, cognitive, emotional and digital spaces that form a moving interplay through the community. In this way, students embrace anywhere anytime learning and often take the learning, as well as the relationships they build and skills they acquire, beyond the digital class into real world situations. We argue that in order to increase student online engagement, pedagogical approaches need to stem from two primary elements, both creativity and critical reflection, that are essential pillars upon which instructors can co-design learning environments with students. The theoretical framework for the paper is based on the interaction and interdependence of Creativity, Intuition, Critical Reflection, Social Constructivism and FOLCs. By leveraging students’ embedded familiarity with a wide variety of technologies, this case study of a graduate level course on critical reflection in education, examines how relationships, quality of work produced, and student engagement can improve by using creative and imaginative pedagogical strategies. The authors examine their professional pedagogical strategies through the lens that the teacher acts as facilitator, guide and co-designer. In a world where students can easily search for and organize information as self-directed processes, creativity and connection can at times be lost in the digitized course environment. The paper concludes by posing further questions as to how institutions of higher education may be challenged to restructure their credit granting courses into more flexible modules, and how students need to be considered an important part of assessment and evaluation strategies. By introducing creativity and critical reflection as central features of the digital learning spaces, notions of best practices in digital teaching and learning emerge.

Keywords: Online, pedagogy, learning, communities.

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78 Inner and Outer School Contextual Factors Associated with Poor Performance of Grade 12 Students: A Case Study of an Underperforming High School in Mpumalanga, South Africa

Authors: Victoria L. Nkosi, Parvaneh Farhangpour

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Often a Grade 12 certificate is perceived as a passport to tertiary education and the minimum requirement to enter the world of work. In spite of its importance, many students do not make this milestone in South Africa. It is important to find out why so many students still fail in spite of transformation in the education system in the post-apartheid era. Given the complexity of education and its context, this study adopted a case study design to examine one historically underperforming high school in Bushbuckridge, Mpumalanga Province, South Africa in 2013. The aim was to gain a understanding of the inner and outer school contextual factors associated with the high failure rate among Grade 12 students.  Government documents and reports were consulted to identify factors in the district and the village surrounding the school and a student survey was conducted to identify school, home and student factors. The randomly-sampled half of the population of Grade 12 students (53) participated in the survey and quantitative data are analyzed using descriptive statistical methods. The findings showed that a host of factors is at play. The school is located in a village within a municipality which has been one of the poorest three municipalities in South Africa and the lowest Grade 12 pass rate in the Mpumalanga province.   Moreover, over half of the families of the students are single parents, 43% are unemployed and the majority has a low level of education. In addition, most families (83%) do not have basic study materials such as a dictionary, books, tables, and chairs. A significant number of students (70%) are over-aged (+19 years old); close to half of them (49%) are grade repeaters. The school itself lacks essential resources, namely computers, science laboratories, library, and enough furniture and textbooks. Moreover, teaching and learning are negatively affected by the teachers’ occasional absenteeism, inadequate lesson preparation, and poor communication skills. Overall, the continuous low performance of students in this school mirrors the vicious circle of multiple negative conditions present within and outside of the school. The complexity of factors associated with the underperformance of Grade 12 students in this school calls for a multi-dimensional intervention from government and stakeholders. One important intervention should be the placement of over-aged students and grade-repeaters in suitable educational institutions for the benefit of other students.

Keywords: Inner context, outer context, over-aged students, vicious circle.

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77 Augmented Reality Sandbox and Constructivist Approach for Geoscience Teaching and Learning

Authors: Muhammad Nawaz, Sandeep N. Kundu, Farha Sattar

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Augmented reality sandbox adds new dimensions to education and learning process. It can be a core component of geoscience teaching and learning to understand the geographic contexts and landform processes. Augmented reality sandbox is a useful tool not only to create an interactive learning environment through spatial visualization but also it can provide an active learning experience to students and enhances the cognition process of learning. Augmented reality sandbox can be used as an interactive learning tool to teach geomorphic and landform processes. This article explains the augmented reality sandbox and the constructivism approach for geoscience teaching and learning, and endeavours to explore the ways to teach the geographic processes using the three-dimensional digital environment for the deep learning of the geoscience concepts interactively.

Keywords: Augmented Reality Sandbox, constructivism, deep learning, geoscience.

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76 Droning the Pedagogy: Future Prospect of Teaching and Learning

Authors: Farha Sattar, Laurence Tamatea, Muhammad Nawaz

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Drones, the Unmanned Aerial Vehicles are playing an important role in real-world problem-solving. With the new advancements in technology, drones are becoming available, affordable and user- friendly. Use of drones in education is opening new trends in teaching and learning practices in an innovative and engaging way. Drones vary in types and sizes and possess various characteristics and capabilities which enhance their potential to be used in education from basic to advanced and challenging learning activities which are suitable for primary, middle and high school level. This research aims to provide an insight to explore different types of drones and their compatibility to be used in teaching different subjects at various levels. Research focuses on integrating the drone technology along with Australian curriculum content knowledge to reinforce the understanding of the fundamental concepts and helps to develop the critical thinking and reasoning in the learning process.

Keywords: Critical thinking, drone technology, drone types, innovative learning.

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75 Hacking the Spatial Limitations in Bridging Virtual and Traditional Teaching Methodologies in Sri Lanka

Authors: Manuela Nayantara Jeyaraj

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Having moved into the 21st century, it is way past being arguable that innovative technology needs to be incorporated into conventional classroom teaching. Though the Western world has found presumable success in achieving this, it is still a concept under battle in developing countries such as Sri Lanka. Reaching the acme of implementing interactive virtual learning within classrooms is a struggling idealistic fascination within the island. In order to overcome this problem, this study is set to reveal facts that limit the implementation of virtual, interactive learning within the school classrooms and provide hacks that could prove the augmented use of the Virtual World to enhance teaching and learning experiences. As each classroom moves along with the usage of technology to fulfill its functionalities, a few intense hacks provided will build the administrative onuses on a virtual system. These hacks may divulge barriers based on social conventions, financial boundaries, digital literacy, intellectual capacity of the staff, and highlight the impediments in introducing students to an interactive virtual learning environment and thereby provide the necessary actions or changes to be made to succeed and march along in creating an intellectual society built on virtual learning and lifestyle. This digital learning environment will be composed of multimedia presentations, trivia and pop quizzes conducted on a GUI, assessments conducted via a virtual system, records maintained on a database, etc. The ultimate objective of this study could enhance every child's basic learning environment; hence, diminishing the digital divide that exists in certain communities.

Keywords: Digital divide, digital learning, digitization, Sri Lanka, teaching methodologies.

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74 Perceptions toward Adopting Virtual Reality as a Learning Aid in Information Technology

Authors: S. Alfalah, J. Falah, T. Alfalah, M. Elfalah, O. Falah

Abstract:

The field of education is an ever-evolving area constantly enriched by newly discovered techniques provided by active research in all areas of technologies. The recent years have witnessed the introduction of a number of promising technologies and applications to enhance the teaching and learning experience. Virtual Reality (VR) applications are considered one of the evolving methods that have contributed to enhancing education in many fields. VR creates an artificial environment, using computer hardware and software, which is similar to the real world. This simulation provides a solution to improve the delivery of materials, which facilitates the teaching process by providing a useful aid to instructors, and enhances the learning experience by providing a beneficial learning aid. In order to assure future utilization of such systems, students’ perceptions were examined toward utilizing VR as an educational tool in the Faculty of Information Technology (IT) in The University of Jordan. A questionnaire was administered to IT undergraduates investigating students’ opinions about the potential opportunities that VR technology could offer and its implications as learning and teaching aid. The results confirmed the end users’ willingness to adopt VR systems as a learning aid. The result of this research forms a solid base for investing in a VR system for IT education.

Keywords: Education, information, technology, virtual reality.

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73 Movies and Dynamic Mathematical Objects on Trigonometry for Mobile Phones

Authors: Kazuhisa Takagi

Abstract:

This paper is about movies and dynamic objects for mobile phones. Dynamic objects are the software programmed by JavaScript. They consist of geometric figures and work on HTML5-compliant browsers. Mobile phones are very popular among teenagers. They like watching movies and playing games on them. So, mathematics movies and dynamic objects would enhance teaching and learning processes. In the movies, manga characters speak with artificially synchronized voices. They teach trigonometry together with dynamic mathematical objects. Many movies are created. They are Windows Media files or MP4 movies. These movies and dynamic objects are not only used in the classroom but also distributed to students. By watching movies, students can study trigonometry before or after class.

Keywords: Dynamic mathematical object, JavaScript, Google drive, transfer jet.

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72 Assisted Approach as a Tool for Increasing Attention When Using the iPad in a Special Elementary School: Action Research

Authors: Vojtěch Gybas, Libor Klubal, Kateřina Kostolányová

Abstract:

Nowadays, mobile touch technologies, such as tablets, are an integral part of teaching and learning in many special elementary schools. Many special education teachers tend to choose an iPad tablet with iOS. The reason is simple; the iPad has a function for pupils with special educational needs. If we decide to use tablets in teaching, in general, first we should try to stimulate the cognitive abilities of the pupil at the highest level, while holding the pupil’s attention on the task, when working with the device. This paper will describe how student attention can be increased by eliminating the working environment of selected applications, while using iPads with pupils in a special elementary school. Assisted function approach is highly effective at eliminating unwanted touching by a pupil when working on the desktop iPad, thus actively increasing the pupil´s attention while working on specific educational applications. During the various stages of the action, the research was conducted via data collection and interpretation. After a phase of gaining results and ideas for practice and actions, we carried out the check measurement, this time using the tool-assisted approach. In both cases, the pupils worked in the Math Board application and the resulting differences were evident.

Keywords: Special elementary school, mobile touch device, iPad, attention, math board.

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71 Students’ Perceptions of Mobile Learning: Case Study of Kuwait

Authors: Rana AlHajri, Salah Al-Sharhan, Ahmed Al-Hunaiyyan

Abstract:

Mobile learning is a new learning landscape that offers opportunity for collaborative, personal, informal, and students’ centered learning environment. In implementing any learning system such as a mobile learning environment, learners’ expectations should be taken into consideration. However, there is a lack of studies on this aspect, particularly in the context of Kuwait higher education (HE) institutions. This study focused on how students perceive the use of mobile devices in learning. Although m-learning is considered as an effective educational tool in developed countries, it is not yet fully utilized in Kuwait. The study reports on the results of a survey conducted on 623 HE students in Kuwait to a better understand students' perceptions and opinions about the effectiveness of using mobile learning systems. An analysis of quantitative survey data is presented. The findings indicated that Kuwait HE students are very familiar with mobile devices and its applications. The results also reveal that students have positive perceptions of m-learning, and believe that video-based social media applications enhance the teaching and learning process.

Keywords: Higher education, mobile learning, social media, students’ perceptions.

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70 Identifying E-Learning Components at North-West University, Mafikeng Campus

Authors: Sylvia Tumelo Nthutang, Nehemiah Mavetera

Abstract:

Educational institutions are under pressure from their competitors. Regulators and community groups need educational institutions to adopt appropriate business and organizational practices. Globally, educational institutions are now using e-learning as the best teaching and learning approach. E-learning is becoming the center of attention to the learning institutions, educational systems and software inventors. North-West University (NWU) is currently using eFundi, a Learning Management System (LMS). LMS are all information systems and procedures that adds value to students learning and support the learning material in text or any multimedia files. With various e-learning tools, students would be able to access all the materials related to the course in electronic copies. The study was tasked with identifying the e-learning components at the NWU, Mafikeng campus. Quantitative research methodology was considered in data collection and descriptive statistics for data analysis. The Activity Theory (AT) was used as a theory to guide the study. AT outlines the limitations amongst e-learning at the macro-organizational level (plan, guiding principle, campus-wide solutions) and micro-organization (daily functioning practice, collaborative transformation, specific adaptation). On a technological environment, AT gives people an opportunity to change from concentrating on computers as an area of concern but also understand that technology is part of human activities. The findings have identified the university’s current IT tools and knowledge on e-learning elements. It was recommended that university should consider buying computer resources that consumes less power and practice e-learning effectively.

Keywords: E-learning, information and communication technology, teaching, and virtual learning environment.

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69 Enhancement of Higher Order Thinking Skills among Teacher Trainers by Fun Game Learning Approach

Authors: Malathi Balakrishnan, Gananathan M. Nadarajah, Saraswathy Vellasamy, Evelyn Gnanam William George

Abstract:

The purpose of the study is to explore how the fun game-learning approach enhances teacher trainers’ higher order thinking skills. Two-day fun filled fun game learning-approach was introduced to teacher trainers as a Continuous Professional Development Program (CPD). 26 teacher trainers participated in this Transformation of Teaching and Learning Fun Way Program, organized by Institute of Teacher Education Malaysia. Qualitative research technique was adopted as the researchers observed the participants’ higher order thinking skills developed during the program. Data were collected from observational checklist; interview transcriptions of four participants and participants’ reflection notes. All the data were later analyzed with NVivo data analysis process. The finding of this study presented five main themes, which are critical thinking, hands on activities, creating, application and use of technology. The studies showed that the teacher trainers’ higher order thinking skills were enhanced after the two-day CPD program. Therefore, Institute of Teacher Education will have more success using the fun way game-learning approach to develop higher order thinking skills among its teacher trainers who can implement these skills to their trainee teachers in future. This study also added knowledge to Constructivism learning theory, which will further highlight the prominence of the fun way learning approach to enhance higher order thinking skills.

Keywords: Constructivism, game-learning approach, higher order thinking skill, teacher trainer.

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68 Students’ Views on Mathematics Learning: A Cross-Sectional Survey of Senior Secondary Schools Students in Katsina State of Nigeria

Authors: Fahad Suleiman

Abstract:

The aim of this paper is to study students’ view on mathematics learning in Katsina State Senior Secondary Schools of Nigeria, such as their conceptions of mathematics, attitudes toward mathematics learning, etc. A questionnaire was administered to a random sample of 1,225 senior secondary two (SS II) students of Katsina State in Nigeria. The data collected showed a clear picture of the hurdles that affect the teaching and learning of mathematics in our schools. Problems such as logistics and operational which include shortage of mathematics teachers, non–availability of a mathematics laboratory, etc. were identified. It also depicted the substantial trends of changing views and attitudes toward mathematics across secondary schools. Students’ responses to the conception of mathematics were consistent and they demonstrated some specific characteristics of their views in learning mathematics. This survey has provided useful information regarding students’ needs and aspirations in mathematics learning for curriculum planners and frontline teachers for future curriculum reform and implementation.

Keywords: Attitude, education, mathematics, students.

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67 Inquiry on the Improvement Teaching Quality in the Classroom with Meta-Teaching Skills

Authors: Shahlan Surat, Saemah Rahman, Saadiah Kummin

Abstract:

When teachers reflect and evaluate whether their teaching methods actually have an impact on students’ learning, they will adjust their practices accordingly. This inevitably improves their students’ learning and performance. The approach in meta-teaching can invigorate and create a passion for teaching. It thus helps to increase the commitment and love for the teaching profession. This study was conducted to determine the level of metacognitive thinking of teachers in the process of teaching and learning in the classroom. Metacognitive thinking teachers include the use of metacognitive knowledge which consists of different types of knowledge: declarative, procedural and conditional. The ability of the teachers to plan, monitor and evaluate the teaching process can also be determined. This study was conducted on 377 graduate teachers in Klang Valley, Malaysia. The stratified sampling method was selected for the purpose of this study. The metacognitive teaching inventory consisting of 24 items is called InKePMG (Teacher Indicators of Effectiveness Meta-Teaching). The results showed the level of mean is high for two components of metacognitive knowledge; declarative knowledge (mean = 4.16) and conditional (mean = 4.11) whereas, the mean of procedural knowledge is 4.00 (moderately high). Similarly, the level of knowledge in monitoring (mean = 4.11), evaluating (mean = 4.00) which indicate high score and planning (mean = 4.00) are moderately high score among teachers. In conclusion, this study shows that the planning and procedural knowledge is an important element in improving the quality of teachers teaching in the classroom. Thus, the researcher recommended that further studies should focus on training programs for teachers on metacognitive skills and also on developing creative thinking among teachers.

Keywords: Metacognitive thinking skills, procedural knowledge, conditional knowledge, declarative knowledge, meta-teaching and regulation of cognitive.

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66 Learners’ Violent Behaviour and Drug Abuse as Major Causes of Tobephobia in Schools

Authors: Prakash Singh

Abstract:

Many schools throughout the world are facing constant pressure to cope with the violence and drug abuse of learners who show little or no respect for acceptable and desirable social norms. These delinquent learners tend to harbour feelings of being beyond reproach because they strongly believe that it is well within their rights to engage in violent and destructive behaviour. Knives, guns, and other weapons appear to be more readily used by them on the school premises than before. It is known that learners smoke, drink alcohol, and use drugs during school hours, hence, their ability to concentrate, work, and learn, is affected. They become violent and display disruptive behaviour in their classrooms as well as on the school premises, and this atrocious behaviour makes it possible for drug dealers and gangsters to gain access onto the school premises. The primary purpose of this exploratory quantitative study was therefore to establish how tobephobia (TBP), caused by school violence and drug abuse, affects teaching and learning in schools. The findings of this study affirmed that poor discipline resulted in producing poor quality education. Most of the teachers in this study agreed that educating learners who consumed alcohol and other drugs on the school premises resulted in them suffering from TBP. These learners are frequently abusive and disrespectful, and resort to violence to seek attention. As a result, teachers feel extremely demotivated and suffer from high levels of anxiety and stress. The word TBP will surely be regarded as a blessing by many teachers throughout the world because finally, there is a word that will make people sit up and listen to their problems that cause real fear and anxiety in schools.

Keywords: Aims and objectives of quality education, Debilitating effects of tobephobia, Fear of failure associated with education, learners’ violent behaviour and drug abuse.

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