Commenced in January 2007
Frequency: Monthly
Edition: International
Paper Count: 465

Search results for: pre-literacy skills.

465 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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464 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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463 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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462 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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461 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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460 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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459 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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458 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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457 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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456 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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455 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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454 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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453 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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452 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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451 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

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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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450 Embedding Employability Skills in Computer and Information Science Program Curriculum

Authors: Nadezda Pizika

Abstract:

The paper discusses possible approaches of embedding the development of employability skills in the program curriculum. This paper contains analysis of the problem areas raised by employers regarding new graduates’ readiness to join workforce, the ways of possible improvements, and the actions required from different stakeholders. The case discussed in the paper is related to Computer and Information Science (CIS) Program offered at Higher Colleges of Technology (UAE).

Keywords: Curriculum Design, Employability Skills, Employers, Graduates.

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449 The Need for the Development of Entrepreneurial Skill in Benue State University Students, Makurdi

Authors: Philomena Ibuh Adzongo, Margaret U. Oluwole, Justina Nguveren Jor.

Abstract:

This paper investigated the need for the development of entrepreneurial skills for Benue State University students. The population consisted of all 1,500 final year students in Benue State University. A sample of 100 students was selected using simple random sampling. A 12-item self-constructed and content validated questionnaire by research experts titled, the Need for the Development of Entrepreneurial Skills in Benue State University Students (NDECBSUS) was used to collect the data. The questionnaire items were rated using a 4-point modified rating scale of Strongly Agree, Agree, Disagree and Strongly Disagree, assigned the following scores of 4,3,2 and 1, respectively. The questionnaire was administered by the researcher with the help of two research assistants through the primary source. Simple percentages and chi-square were used to answer the research questions and test the hypotheses, respectively. The findings revealed that in business management, business management skills, personal skills, and technical skills need to be developed in students for them to become effective and efficient entrepreneurs and concluded that the acquisition of these skills will reduce the challenge of unemployment. The study recommended that funds should be made available by all education stakeholders for such programmes to remain functional.

Keywords: Entrepreneurial skill, entrepreneurship, need for development, university students.

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448 Reflections of Prospective Teachers Toward a Critical Thinking-Based Pedagogical Course: A Case Study

Authors: Ahmet Ok, Banu Yücel Toy

Abstract:

Promoting critical thinking (CT) in an educational setting has been appraised in order to enhance learning and intellectual skills. In this study, a pedagogical course in a vocational teacher education program in Turkey was designed by integrating CT skill-based strategies/activities into the course content and CT skills were means leading to intended course objectives. The purpose of the study was to evaluate the importance of the course objectives, the attainment of the objectives, and the effectiveness of teachinglearning strategies/activities from prospective teachers- points of view. The results revealed that although the students mostly considered the course objectives important, they did not feel competent in the attainment of all objectives especially in those related to the main topic of Learning and those requiring higher order thinking skills. On the other hand, the students considered the course activities effective for learning and for the development of thinking skills, especially, in interpreting, comparing, questioning, contrasting, and forming relationships.

Keywords: Critical thinking, critical thinking-based instruction, higher order thinking skills, teacher education

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447 An Empirical Study of the Effect of Robot Programming Education on the Computational Thinking of Young Children: The Role of Flowcharts

Authors: Wei Sun, Yan Dong

Abstract:

There is an increasing interest in introducing computational thinking at an early age. Computational thinking, like mathematical thinking, engineering thinking, and scientific thinking, is a kind of analytical thinking. Learning computational thinking skills is not only to improve technological literacy, but also allows learners to equip with practicable skills such as problem-solving skills. As people realize the importance of computational thinking, the field of educational technology faces a problem: how to choose appropriate tools and activities to help students develop computational thinking skills. Robots are gradually becoming a popular teaching tool, as robots provide a tangible way for young children to access to technology, and controlling a robot through programming offers them opportunities to engage in developing computational thinking. This study explores whether the introduction of flowcharts into the robotics programming courses can help children convert natural language into a programming language more easily, and then to better cultivate their computational thinking skills. An experimental study was adopted with a sample of children ages six to seven (N = 16) participated, and a one-meter-tall humanoid robot was used as the teaching tool. Results show that children can master basic programming concepts through robotic courses. Children's computational thinking has been significantly improved. Besides, results suggest that flowcharts do have an impact on young children’s computational thinking skills development, but it only has a significant effect on the "sequencing" and "correspondence" skills. Overall, the study demonstrates that the humanoid robot and flowcharts have qualities that foster young children to learn programming and develop computational thinking skills.

Keywords: Robotics, computational thinking, programming, young children, flowcharts.

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446 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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445 Gross Motor Skills of Children with Mild Intellectual Disabilities

Authors: Pavel Zikl, Nikola Holoubková, Hana Karásková, Tereza B. Veselíková

Abstract:

The article presents the research results focused on comparing the level of gross motor skills in children with mild intellectual disabilities and intact children. The data collection used the standard test (Test of Gross Motor Development). The research sample consisted of a total of 114 students with an average age of 10 years. The results present the differences between the two groups of students in locomotor skills and object control skills. The presented results can serve as a basis for better targeting of special-pedagogical support for children with mild intellectual disabilities and as a basis for innovation of the curriculum for this group of children, as well as a basis for further research activities in this area.

Keywords: Gross motor, mild intellectual disability, Test of Gross Motor Development.

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444 Body Composition Index Predict Children’s Motor Skills Proficiency

Authors: Sarina Md Yusof, Suhana Aiman, Mohd Khairi Zawi, Hosni Hasan, Azila Azreen Md Radzi

Abstract:

Failure in mastery of motor skills proficiency during childhood has been seen as a detrimental factor for children to be physically active. Lack of motor skills proficiency tends to reduce children’s competency and confidence level to participate in physical activity. As a consequence of less participation in physical activity, children will turn to be overweight and obese. It has been suggested that children who master motor skill proficiency will be more involved in physical activity thus preventing them from being overweight. Obesity has become a serious childhood health issues worldwide. Previous studies have found that children who were overweight and obese were generally less active however these studies focused on one gender. This study aims to compare motor skill proficiency of underweight, normal-weight, overweight and obese young boys as well as to determine the relationship between motor skills proficiency and body composition. 112 boys aged between 8 to 10 years old participated in this study. Participants were assigned to four groups; underweight, normal-weight, overweight and obese using BMI-age percentile chart for children. Bruininks- Oseretsky Test Second Edition-Short Form was administered to assess their motor skill proficiency. Meanwhile, body composition was determined by the skinfold thickness measurement. Result indicated that underweight and normal children were superior in motor skills proficiency compared to overweight and obese children (p < 0.05). A significant strong inverse correlation between motor skills proficiency and body composition (r = -0.849) is noted. The findings of this study could be explained by non-contributory mass that carried by overweight and obese children leads to biomechanical movement inefficiency which will become detrimental to motor skills proficiency. It can be concluded that motor skills proficiency is inversely correlated with body composition.

Keywords: Motor skills proficiency, body composition, obesity.

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443 Creating a Space for Teaching Problem Solving Skills to Engineering Students through English Language Teaching

Authors: Mimi N. A. Mohamed

Abstract:

The complexity of teaching English in higher institutions by non-native speakers within a second/foreign language setting has created continuous discussions and research about teaching approaches and teaching practises, professional identities and challenges. In addition, there is a growing awareness that teaching English within discipline-specific contexts adds up to the existing complexity. This awareness leads to reassessments, discussions and suggestions on course design and content and teaching approaches and techniques. In meeting expectations teaching at a university specified in a particular discipline such as engineering, English language educators are not only required to teach students to be able to communicate in English effectively but also to teach soft skills such as problem solving skills. This paper is part of a research conducted to investigate how English language educators negotiate with the complexities of teaching problem solving skills through English language teaching at a technical university. This paper reports the way an English language educator identified himself and the way he approached his teaching in this institutional context.

Keywords: English Language Teaching, Teacher Agency, Problem Solving Skills, Professional Identities.

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442 Entrepreneurship Skills Acquisition through Education: Impact of the Nurturance of Knowledge, Skills, and Attitude on New Venture Creation

Authors: Satya Ranjan Acharya, Yamini Chandra

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Entrepreneurship through higher education has taken a paradigm shift from traditional classroom lecture series method to a modern approach, which lay emphasis on nurturing competencies, enhancing knowledge, skills, attitudes/abilities (KSA), which has positive impact on the development of core capabilities. The present paper was focused on the analysis of entrepreneurship education as a pedagogical intervention for the post-graduate program offered at the Entrepreneurship Development Institute of India, Gujarat, India. The study is focused on a model with special emphasis on developing KSA and its effect on nurturing entrepreneurial spirit within students. The findings represent demographic and thematic assessment of the implemented pedagogical model with an outcome of students choosing a career in new venture creation or growth/diversification of family owned businesses. This research will be helpful for academicians, research scholars, potential entrepreneurs, ecosystem enablers and students to infer the effectiveness of nurturing entrepreneurial skills and bringing more changes in personal attitudes by the way of enhancing the knowledge and skills required for the execution of an entrepreneurial career. This research is original in nature as it provides an in-depth insight into an implemented model of curriculum, focused on the development and nurturance of basic skills and its impact on the career choice of students.

Keywords: Attitude, entrepreneurship education, knowledge, new venture creation, pedagogical intervention, skills.

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441 The Perception on 21st Century Skills of Nursing Instructors and Nursing Students at Boromarajonani College of Nursing, Chonburi

Authors: Kamolrat Turner, Somporn Rakkwamsuk, Ladda Leungratanamart

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The aim of this descriptive study was to determine the perception of 21st century skills among nursing professors and nursing students at Boromarajonani College of Nursing, Chonburi. A total of 38 nursing professors and 75 second year nursing students took part in the study. Data were collected by 21st century skills questionnaires comprised of 63 items. Descriptive statistics were used to describe the findings. The results have shown that the overall mean scores of the perception of nursing professors on 21st century skills were at a high level. The highest mean scores were recorded for computing and ICT literacy, and career and leaning skills. The lowest mean scores were recorded for reading and writing and mathematics. The overall mean scores on perception of nursing students on 21st century skills were at a high level. The highest mean scores were recorded for computer and ICT literacy, for which the highest item mean scores were recorded for competency on computer programs. The lowest mean scores were recorded for the reading, writing, and mathematics components, in which the highest item mean score was reading Thai correctly, and the lowest item mean score was English reading and translate to other correctly. The findings from this study have shown that the perceptions of nursing professors were consistent with those of nursing students. Moreover, any activities aiming to raise capacity on English reading and translate information to others should be taken into the consideration.

Keywords: 21st century skills, perception, nursing instructor, nursing student.

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440 A Consideration of the Achievement of Productive Level Parallel Programming Skills

Authors: Tadayoshi Horita, Masakazu Akiba, Mina Terauchi, Tsuneo Kanno

Abstract:

This paper gives a consideration of the achievement of productive level parallel programming skills, based on the data of the graduation studies in the Polytechnic University of Japan. The data show that most students can achieve only parallel programming skills during the graduation study (about 600 to 700 hours), if the programming environment is limited to GPGPUs. However, the data also show that it is a very high level task that a student achieves productive level parallel programming skills during only the graduation study. In addition, it shows that the parallel programming environments for GPGPU, such as CUDA and OpenCL, may be more suitable for parallel computing education than other environments such as MPI on a cluster system and Cell.B.E. These results must be useful for the areas of not only software developments, but also hardware product developments using computer technologies.

Keywords: Parallel computing, programming education, GPU, GPGPU, CUDA, OpenCL, MPI, Cell.B.E.

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439 The e-DELPHI Method to Test the Importance Competence and Skills: Case of the Lifelong Learning Spanish Trainers

Authors: Xhevrie Mamaqi, Jesus Miguel, Pilar Olave

Abstract:

The lifelong learning is a crucial element in the modernization of European education and training systems. The most important actors in the development process of the lifelong learning are the trainers, whose professional characteristics need new competences and skills in the current labour market. The main objective of this paper is to establish an importance ranking of the new competences, capabilities and skills that the lifelong learning Spanish trainers must possess nowadays. A wide study of secondary sources has allowed the design of a questionnaire that organizes the trainer-s skills and competences. The e-Delphi method is used for realizing a creative, individual and anonymous evaluation by experts on the importance ranking that presents the criteria, sub-criteria and indicators of the e-Delphi questionnaire. Twenty Spanish experts in the lifelong learning have participated in two rounds of the e- DELPHI method. In the first round, the analysis of the experts- evaluation has allowed to establish the ranking of the most importance criteria, sub-criteria and indicators and to eliminate the least valued. The minimum level necessary to reach the consensus among experts has been achieved in the second round.

Keywords: competences and skills, lifelong learningtrainers, Spain, e-DELHI method.

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438 Creative Thinking Skill Approach Through Problem-Based Learning: Pedagogy and Practice in the Engineering Classroom

Authors: Halizah Awang, Ishak Ramly

Abstract:

Problem-based learning (PBL) is one of the student centered approaches and has been considered by a number of higher educational institutions in many parts of the world as a method of delivery. This paper presents a creative thinking approach for implementing Problem-based Learning in Mechanics of Structure within a Malaysian Polytechnics environment. In the learning process, students learn how to analyze the problem given among the students and sharing classroom knowledge into practice. Further, through this course-s emphasis on problem-based learning, students acquire creative thinking skills and professional skills as they tackle complex, interdisciplinary and real-situation problems. Once the creative ideas are generated, there are useful additional techniques for tender ideas that will grow into a productive concept or solution. The combination of creative skills and technical abilities will enable the students to be ready to “hit-the-ground-running" and produce in industry when they graduate.

Keywords: Creative Thinking Skills, Problem-based Learning, Problem Solving.

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437 An Innovative Approach to Improve Skills of Students in Qatar University Spending in Virtual Class through Learning Management System

Authors: Mohammad Shahid Jamil, Mohamed Chabi

Abstract:

In this study, students’ learning has been investigated and satisfaction in one of the course offered at Qatar University Foundation Program. Innovative teaching has been implied methodology that emphasizes on enhancing students’ thinking skills, decision making, and problem solving skills. Some interesting results were found which could be used to further improvement of the teaching methodology. In Fall 2012 in Foundation Program Math department at Qatar University has started implementing new ways of teaching Math by introducing MyMathLab (MML) as an innovative interactive tool in addition of the use Blackboard to support standard teaching such as Discussion board in Virtual class to engage students outside of classroom and to enhance independent, active learning that promote students’ critical thinking skills, decision making, and problem solving skills through the learning process.

Keywords: Blackboard, MyMathLab, study plan, discussion board, critical thinking, active and independent learning, problem solving.

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436 The Effect of Peer Support to Interpersonal Problem Solving Tendencies and Skills in Nursing Students

Authors: B. Özlük, A. Karaaslan

Abstract:

This study has been conducted as a supplementary and relationship seeking study with the purpose of measuring the tendency and success of support among peers amid nursing students studying at university in solving interpersonal problems. The population of the study (N:279) is comprised of nursing students who are studying at one state and one private university in the province of Konya, while its sample is comprised of 231 nursing students who agreed to take part in the study voluntarily. As a result of this study, it has been determined that the peer support and interpersonal problem solving characteristics among students were at medium levels and that the interpersonal problem solving skills of students studying in the third year were higher than those of first and second year students. While the interpersonal problem solving characteristics of students who are aged 20 and over were found to be higher, no difference could be determined in terms of the interpersonal problem solving skills and tendencies among students, based on their gender and where they reside. A positive – to a medium degree – and significant relationship was determined between peer support and interpersonal problem solving skills, and it is possible to say that as peer support increases, so do the skills and tendencies to solve problems.

Keywords: Interpersonal problem, nursing students, peer support, problem solving.

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