- Journal Details
- First Published
- 11 Dec 2014
- Publication timeframe
- 2 times per year
- Open Access
Comparison of Academic Performance of Students in Online Vs Traditional Engineering Course
Page range: 1 - 13
Universities in the U.S. typically offer to teach introductory engineering courses in large classes to tackle the increase in undergraduate engineering enrolment and to save on cost of teaching. Previous studies done on traditionally taught large classes have shown the negative effects it has on students and faculty. Many institutions use online courses to teach these large classes due to the flexibility they provide students with in their schedule and pace of learning, as well as being less expensive for the university. This study aimed to investigate the effect of online pedagogy on the academic performance of students enrolled in mechanics of materials course taught at a U.S. Midwestern University. The findings of the study reveal that the online pedagogy had a negative effect on student academic performance when compared with the traditionally taught group. This was true for all demographics (gender, enrolment status, nationality) and categories (high, medium and low academic performance) of students except for high performing students for whom online pedagogy shows promise.
- engineering education
- student performance
- Open Access
Developing a New Generation MOOC (ngMOOC): A Design-Based Implementation Research Project with Cognitive Architecture and Student Feedback in Mind
Page range: 14 - 35
This paper describes a design-based implementation research (DBIR) approach to the development and trialling of a new generation massive open online course (ngMOOC) situated in an instructional setting of undergraduate mathematics at a regional Australian university. This process is underscored by two important innovations: (a) a basis in a well-established human cognitive architecture in terms of cognitive load theory; and (b) point-of-contact feedback based in a well-tested online system dedicated to enhancing the learning process. Analysis of preliminary trials suggests that the DBIR approach to the ngMOOC construction and development supports theoretical standpoints that argue for an understanding of how design for optimal learning can utilise conditions, such as differing online or blended educational contexts, in order to be effective and scalable. The ngMOOC development described in this paper marks the adoption of a cognitive architecture in conjunction with feedback systems, offering the groundwork for use of adaptive systems that cater for learner expertise. This approach seems especially useful in constructing and developing online learning that is self-paced and curriculum-based.
- massive open online course (MOOC)
- design-based implementation research (DBIR)
- online learning
- cognitive load theory
- point-of-contact feedback
- Open Access
An Analysis of Intercultural Students’ Self-Determination in Graduate Online Programmes: Implications for Praxis
Page range: 36 - 52
The self-determination of online graduate students was studied in terms of the impact of autonomy, competence and relatedness upon their persistence. Unique to this study was the assessment of the potential influence of socio-cultural factors. As the majority of research into online university students’ persistence is generated from the US, Canada, UK and European countries assessing their own domestic populations, the global nature of this study provides a new perspective. Fifty-four online graduate students representing 26 countries participated representing 19 lesser developed economies and 7 developed economies. Collectivist versus individualistic cultures were equally represented. Self-determination Theory (SDT) was examined both in terms of the online classroom environment as well as overcoming life challenges for programme perseverance. A correlational matrix was used to reject the null hypothesis. Results indicated that statistically significant correlations exist among the three variables, and, in the instances of the variables of autonomy and relatedness, a significant negative correlation exists. The findings indicate that the participants displayed strong internal locus of control, self-directed learning, competency and relatedness in attaining success within the online environment programme. Cultural communitarianism values were not found to be of significant influence.
- self-determination theory
- cultural diversity
- student motivation
- online education
- Open Access
Examining Faculty Readiness to Teach Online: A Comparison of US and German Educators
Page range: 53 - 69
With the increase in the number of online courses being offered, it is important for faculty to be prepared to teach online. In this study, we examine US and German faculty perceptions on their preparedness to teach online based on the perception of importance of teaching online competencies and their efficacy to teach online. We also examine factors (gender, age, country located, academic discipline, academic rank, method of teaching, years of teaching, years of teaching online and level taught) that are related to US and German faculty perception of the importance and efficacy of online teaching. Overall, the US faculty rated the competencies higher compared to the German faculty both in perception of importance and self-efficacy. Significant differences in the perception of the importance of competencies were noted based on gender, training, level taught, rank, and age. For self-efficacy, there were significant differences between the faculty in teaching format (synchronous, asynchronous or hybrid format), years of teaching online, and age. This study has implications for instructors who teach online, for instructional designers who offer professional development for online teaching and for administrators who support online learning at the universities.
- Open Access
Leveraging Social Media in Higher Education: A Case of Universities in Uganda
Page range: 70 - 84
Social media platforms have transformed the way we live and work. These platforms have opened up new opportunities for service provisioning and business models. Therefore, this paper presents findings of how leading Ugandan Universities are integrating social media in the teaching and learning processes. The researchers adopted a multi-methodology research approach which involved; collecting, analysing and integrating quantitative (surveys) and qualitative (focus group discussions and interviews) research methods. A total of 300 respondents were targeted (students and lecturers) of which 250 responded (196 male and 54 female). The respondents from Makerere University, Uganda technology and Management University (UTAMU) and Makerere University Business School. The results of the study indicated that majority (94.8%) of the respondents use WhatsApp, 86.5% Facebook, 82.1% YouTube, 53.8% Twitter, 39.8% Instagram and 9.2% snapchat. It was observed that 225 about 91.1% of student’s use social media for learning purposes. A total of 238 respondents use smartphones to access social media. While majority of students on social media platforms use these platforms for learning purposes, majority of lecturers (37.6%) never engage students on social media. Therefore, there is a mismatch on social media usage between students and lectures and this calls for the development of social media policies at universities to promote and guide the integration of these platforms in the teaching and learning processes.
- Social Media
- Ugandan Universities
- Open Access
A MOOC Taxonomy Based on Classification Schemes of MOOCs
Page range: 85 - 103
In recent years there has been a significant growth in the number of online courses known as MOOCs available via online providers such as edX and Coursera. The result has been a marked reduction in the clarity around the different course offerings and this has created a need to reconsider the classification schemes for MOOCs to help inform potential participants. Many classifications have been proposed which cover the needs of academics and providers but may not be suitable for learners choosing a course. In this paper, the various classifications used by MOOC providers and aggregator services to categorise MOOCs in presenting information to prospective learners are gathered and analysed. As a result, 13 different categories are identified, which cover information provided to learners before entering a course. These categories are then compared and combined with classifications from the literature to create a taxonomy centred round eight terms: Massive (e.g. enrolments), Open (e.g. pre-requisites), Online (e.g. Timings), Assessment, Pedagogy (e.g. instructor-led), Quality (e.g. reviews), Delivery (e.g. educators), Subject (e.g. Syllabus). Thus, producing a taxonomy capable of categorising MOOCs from a wider perspective.