Objectives: In recent years, the Faculty of Dentistry of the University of Hong Kong have extended the implementation of 3D electronic models (e-models) into problem-based learning (PBL) of the Bachelor of Dental Surgery (BDS) curriculum, aiming at mutual enhancement of PBL teaching quality and the students’ skills in using e-models. This study focuses on the effectiveness of e-models serving as a tool to enhance the students’ skills and competences in PBL. Methods: The questionnaire surveys are conducted to measure 50 fourth-year BDS students’ attitude change between beginning and end of blended PBL tutorials. The response rate of this survey is 100%. Results: The results of this study show the students’ agreement on enhancement of their learning experience after e-model implementation and their expectation to have more blended PBL courses in the future. The potential of e-models in cultivating students’ self-learning skills reduces their dependence on others, while improving their communication skills to argue about pros and cons of different treatment options. The students’ independent thinking ability and problem solving skills are promoted by e-model implementation, resulting in better decision making in treatment planning. Conclusion: It is important for future dental education curriculum planning to cope with the students’ needs, and offer support in the form of software, hardware and facilitators’ assistance for better e-model implementation.
The principle of sustainability has been studied by different sciences with the purpose of formulating clear and concrete models. Much has been discussed about sustainability, and several points of view have been used to try to explain it; environmental science emerges from various environmental discourses that are willing to establish a new concept for understanding this complexity. This way, we focus on the activity of ecotourism as a way to integrate sustainable practices proposed by environmental science, and thus, make it possible to create a new perspective for eco-tourists and the managers of tourist destinations towards nature. The aim of this study was to suggest a direction for environmental awareness, based on environmental science, to change the eco-tourist's view of nature in ecotourism tours. The methodology used was based on a case study concerning the Jalapão State Park - JSP, located in the State of Tocantins, Northern Brazil. The study was based on discussions, theoretical studies, bibliographical research and on-site research. We have identified that to incite the tourists’ awareness, they need to visit nature to understand the environmental problems and promote actions for its preservation. We highlight in this study actions to drive their human perception through environmental science, so that the ecotourism itinerary tours to the JSP, promote a balance between the natural environment and the tourist, making them, in this way, environmental tourists.
Landfills present long-term threats to soil, air, groundwater and surface water due to the formation of greenhouse gases (methane gas and carbon dioxide) and leachate from decomposing garbage. The composition of leachate differs from site to site and also within the landfill. The leachates alter with time (from weeks to years) since the landfilled waste is biologically highly active and their composition varies. Mainly, the composition of the leachate depends on factors such as characteristics of the waste, the moisture content, climatic conditions, degree of compaction and the age of the landfill. Therefore, the leachate composition cannot be generalized and the traditional treatment models should be adapted in each case. Although leachate composition is highly variable, what different leachates have in common is hazardous constituents and their potential eco-toxicological effects on human health and on terrestrial ecosystems. Since leachate has distinct compositions, each landfill or dumping site would represent a different type of risk on its environment. Nevertheless, leachates consist always of high organic concentration, conductivity, heavy metals and ammonia nitrogen. Leachate could affect the current and future quality of water bodies due to uncontrolled infiltrations. Therefore, control and treatment of leachate is one of the biggest issues in urban solid waste treatment plants and landfills design and management. This work presents a treatment model that will be carried out "in-situ" using a cost-effective novel technology that combines solar evaporation/condensation plus forward osmosis. The plant is powered by renewable energies (solar energy, biomass and residual heat), which will minimize the carbon footprint of the process. The final effluent quality is very high, allowing reuse (preferred) or discharge into watercourses. In the particular case of this work, the final effluents will be reused for cleaning and gardening purposes. A minority semi-solid residual stream is also generated in the process. Due to its special composition (rich in metals and inorganic elements), this stream will be valorized in ceramic industries to improve the final products characteristics.
Statements of facts have been made about Nollywood, a segment of the Nigerian film industry that has in recent times become phenomenal due largely to its quantity of production and specific production style. In the face of recent transformations reshaping the industry, matters have been arising which have not been given due academic attention from an industry player perspective. While re-addressing such issues like structure, policy and informality, this study benefits from a new perspective – that of a community member adopting participant observation to research into a familiar culture. With data drawn from an extensive ethnographic study of the industry, this paper examines these matters with an emphasis on structure and the industry’s overall political economy. Drawing from discourses on the new and old Nollywood labels and other current matters arising within the industry such as the MOPICON bill redraft, corporate financing and possibilities of regeneration, this paper examines structure and power struggle within Nollywood. These are championing regenerative processes that bring about formalization, professionalism and the quest for a transnational presence, which have only been superficially evaluated. Focused essentially on Nollywood’s political economy, this study critically analyses the transforming face of an informal industry, the consistent quest for structure, quality and standard, and issues of corporate sponsorship as possible trends of regeneration. It evaluates them as indicators of regeneration, questioning the possibilities of their sustenance in an industry experiencing increased interactions with the formal economy and an influx of young professionals. With findings that make sustained regeneration both certain (due to increased formal economy interaction) and uncertain (due to the dysfunctionality of the society and its political system), it concludes that the transforming face of the industry suggests impending gentrification of the industry.
“Humour studies” is an interdisciplinary research area that is relatively recent. It interests researchers from the disciplines of psychology, sociology, medicine, nursing, in the work place, gender studies, among others, and certainly teaching, language learning, linguistics, and literature. Linguistic theories of humour research are numerous; some of which are of interest to the present study. In spite of the fact that humour courses are now taught in universities around the world in the Egyptian context it is not included. The purpose of the present study is two-fold: to review the state of arts and to show how linguistic theories of humour can be possibly used as an art and craft of teaching and of learning in EFL literature classes. In the present study linguistic theories of humour were applied to selected literary texts to interpret humour as an intrinsic artistic communicative competence challenge. Humour in the area of linguistics was seen as a fifth component of communicative competence of the second language leaner. In literature it was studied as satire, irony, wit, or comedy. Linguistic theories of humour now describe its linguistic structure, mechanism, function, and linguistic deviance. Semantic Script Theory of Verbal Humor (SSTH), General Theory of Verbal Humor (GTVH), Audience Based Theory of Humor (ABTH), and their extensions and subcategories as well as the pragmatic perspective were employed in the analyses. This research analysed the linguistic semantic structure of humour, its mechanism, and how the audience reader (teacher or learner) becomes an interactive interpreter of the humour. This promotes humour competence together with the linguistic, social, cultural, and discourse communicative competence. Studying humour as part of the literary texts and the perception of its function in the work also brings its positive association in class for educational purposes. Humour is by default a provoking/laughter-generated device. Incongruity recognition, perception and resolving it, is a cognitive mastery. This cognitive process involves a humour experience that lightens up the classroom and the mind. It establishes connections necessary for the learning process. In this context the study examined selected narratives to exemplify the application of the theories. It is, therefore, recommended that the theories would be taught and applied to literary texts for a better understanding of the language. Students will then develop their language competence. Teachers in EFL/ESL classes will teach the theories, assist students apply them and interpret text and in the process will also use humour. This is thus easing students' acquisition of the second language, making the classroom an enjoyable, cheerful, self-assuring, and self-illuminating experience for both themselves and their students. It is further recommended that courses of humour research studies should become an integral part of higher education curricula in Egypt.
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.
The curriculum of architecture department in Prince Sultan University includes ‘Building Surveying’ course which is usually a part of civil engineering courses. As a fundamental requirement of the course, it requires a strong background in mathematics and physics, which are not usually preferred subjects to the architecture students and many of them are not giving the required and necessary attention to these courses during their preparation year before commencing their architectural study. This paper introduces the concept and the methodology of the student-centered learning approach in the course of building surveying for architects. One of the major outcomes is the improvement in the students’ involvement in the course and how this will cover and strength their analytical weak points and improve their mathematical skills. The study is conducted through three semesters with a total number of 99 students. The effectiveness of the student-centered learning approach is studied using the student survey at the end of each semester and teacher observations. This survey showed great acceptance of the students for these methods. Also, the teachers observed a great improvement in the students’ mathematical abilities and how keener they became in attending the classes which were clearly reflected on the low absence record.
Since its appearance, the MOOC (massive open online course) is gaining more and more intention of the educational communities over the world. Apart from the current MOOCs design and purposes, the creators of MOOC focused on the importance of the connection and knowledge exchange between individuals in learning. In this paper, we present a conceptual model for massive open online blended courses where teachers over the world can collaborate and exchange their experience to get a common efficient content designed as a MOOC opened to their students to live a better learning experience. This model is based on disciplines’ concepts capitalization and the detection of the obstacles met by their students when faced with problem situations (exercises, projects, case studies, etc.). This detection is possible by analyzing the frequently of semantic errors committed by the students. The participation of teachers in the design of the course and the attendance by their students can guarantee an efficient and extensive participation (an important number of participants) in the course, the learners’ motivation and the evaluation issues, in the way that the teachers designing the course assess their students. Thus, the teachers review, together with their knowledge, offer a better assessment and efficient connections to their students.
The representation of women characters in cinema has been discussed for centuries. In cinema where dominant narrative codes prevail and scopophilic views exist over women characters, passive stereotypes of women are observed in the representation of women characters. In films shot from a woman’s point of view in Turkish Cinema and even in the films outside the main stream in which the stories of women characters are told, the fact that women characters are discussed on the basis of feminist film theories triggers the question: ‘Are feminist films produced in Turkish Cinema?’ The spaces that are used in the representation of women characters are observed to be used as spaces that convert characters into passive subjects on the basis of the space factor in the narrative. The representation of women characters in the possible surveillance spaces integrates the characters and compresses them in these spaces. In this study, narrative analysis was used to investigate women characters representation in the surveillance spaces. For the study framework, firstly a case study films are selected, and in the second level, women characters representations in surveillance spaces are argued by narrative analysis using feminist film theories. Two questions are argued with feminist film theories: ‘Why do especially women directors represent their female characters to viewers by representing them in surveillance spaces?’ and ‘Can this type of presentation contribute to the feminist film practice and become important with regard to feminist film theories?’ The representation of women characters in a passive and observed way in surveillance spaces of the narrative reveals the questioning of also the discourses of films outside of the main stream. As films that produce alternative discourses and reveal different cinematic languages, those outside the main stream are expected to bring other points of view also to the representation of women characters in spaces. These questionings are selected as the baseline and Turkish films such as Watch Tower and Mustang, directed by women, were examined. This examination paves the way for discussions regarding the women characters in surveillance spaces. Outcomes can be argued from the viewpoint of representation in the genre by feminist film theories. In the context of feminist film theories and feminist film practice, alternatives should be found that can corporally reveal the existence of women in both the representation of women characters in spaces and in the usage of the space factor.
To strengthen social and behavior change communication (SBCC) capacity of Ministry of Health and Family Welfare (MoHFW) of the Government of Bangladesh, BCCP/BKMI developed two eLearning courses providing opportunities for professional development of SBCC Program Managers who have no access to training or refreshers training. The two eLearning courses – Message and Material Development (MMD) and Monitoring and Evaluation (MandE) of SBCC programs – went online in September 2015, where all users could register their participation so results could be monitored. Methodology: To assess the uses of these courses a randomly selected sample was collected to run a pre and post-test analyses and a phone survey were conducted. Systematic random sampling was used to select a sample of 75 MandE and 25 MMD course participants from a sampling frame of 179 and 51 respectively. Results: As of September 2016, more than 179 learners have completed the MandE course, and 49 learners have completed the MMD course. The users of these courses are program managers, university faculty members, and students. Encouraging results were revealed from the analysis of pre and post-test scores and a phone survey three months after course completion. Test scores suggested a substantial increase in knowledge. The pre-test scores findings suggested that about 19% learners scored high on the MandE. The post-test scores finding indicated a high score (92%) of the sample across 4 modules of MandE. For MMD course in pre-test scoring, 30% of the learners scored high, and 100% scored high at the post-test. It was found that all the learners in the phone survey have discussed the courses. Most of the sharing occurred with colleagues and friends, usually through face to face (70%) interaction. The learners reported that they did recommend the two courses to concerned people. About 67% MandE and 76% MMD learners stated that the concepts that they had to learn during the course were put into practice in their work settings. The respondents for both MandE and MMD courses have provided a valuable set of suggestions that would further strengthen the courses. Conclusions: The study showed that the initiative offered ample opportunities to build capacity in various ways in which the eLearning courses were used. It also highlighted the importance of scaling up these efforts to further strengthen the outcomes.
Metropolia University of Applied Sciences (MUAS) Information and Communication Technology (ICT) Degree Programme provides full-time Bachelor-level undergraduate studies. ICT Degree Programme has seven different major options; this paper focuses on Health Technology. In Health Technology, a significant curriculum change in 2014 enabled transition from fragmented curriculum including dozens of courses to a new integrated curriculum built around three 30 ECTS themes. This paper focuses especially on the second theme called Customer Oriented Software Applications. From students’ point of view, the goal of this theme is to get familiar with existing health related ICT solutions and systems, understand business around health technology, recognize social and healthcare operating principles and services, and identify customers and users and their special needs and perspectives. This also acts as a background for health related web application development. Built web application is tested, developed and evaluated with real users utilizing versatile user centred development methods. This paper presents experiences obtained from the first implementation of Customer Oriented Software Applications theme. Student feedback was gathered with two questionnaires, one in the middle of the theme and other at the end of the theme. Questionnaires had qualitative and quantitative parts. Similar questionnaire was implemented in the first theme; this paper evaluates how the theme-based integrated curriculum has progressed in Health Technology major by comparing results between theme 1 and 2. In general, students were satisfied for the implementation, timing and synchronization of the courses, and the amount of work. However there is still room for development. Student feedback and teachers’ observations have been and will be used to develop the content and operating principles of the themes and whole curriculum.
Defining professional objectives and the search for work are some of the greatest stress factors for final year university students and recent graduates. To manage correctly the stress brought about by the uncertainty, confusion and frustration this process often generates, a course to control stress based on mindfulness has been designed and taught. This course provides tools based on relaxation, mindfulness and meditation that enable students to address personal and professional challenges in the transition to the job market, eliminating or easing the anxiety involved. The course is extremely practical and experiential, combining theory classes and practical classes of relaxation, meditation and mindfulness, group dynamics, reflection, application protocols and session integration. The evaluation of the courses highlighted on the one hand the high degree of satisfaction and, on the other, the usefulness for the students in becoming aware of stressful situations and how these affect them and learning new coping techniques that enable them to reach their goals more easily and with greater satisfaction and well-being.
The aim of this study was to evaluate the role of multisensory elements in enhancing and facilitating foreign language acquisition among adult students in a language classroom. The use of multisensory elements enables the creation of a student-centered classroom, where the focus is on individual learner’s language learning process, perceptions and motivation. Multisensory language learning is a pedagogical approach where the language learner uses all the senses more effectively than in a traditional in-class environment. Language learning is facilitated due to multisensory stimuli which increase the number of cognitive connections in the learner and take into consideration different types of learners. A living lab called Multisensory Space creates a relaxed and receptive state in the learners through various multisensory stimuli, and thus promotes their natural foreign language acquisition. Qualitative and quantitative data were collected in two questionnaire inquiries among the Finnish students of a higher education institute at the end of their basic French courses in December 2014 and 2016. The inquiries discussed the effects of multisensory elements on the students’ motivation to study French as well as their learning outcomes. The results show that the French classes in the Multisensory Space provide the students with an encouraging and pleasant learning environment, which has a positive impact on their motivation to study the foreign language as well as their language learning outcomes.
Nuclear technology is part of our everyday life and its beneficial applications help to improve the quality of our lives. Nevertheless, in Brazil, most often the media and social networks tend to associate radiation to nuclear weapons and major accidents, and there is still great misunderstanding about the peaceful applications of nuclear science. The Educational Portal Radioatividades (Radioactivities) is a corporate social responsibility initiative that takes advantage of the growing impact of Internet to offer high quality scientific information for teachers and students throughout Brazil. This web-based initiative focusses on the positive applications of nuclear technology, presenting the several contributions of ionizing radiation in different contexts, such as nuclear medicine, agriculture techniques, food safety and electric power generation, proving nuclear technology as part of modern life and a must to improve the quality of our lifestyle. This educational project aims to contribute for democratization of scientific education and social inclusion, approaching society to scientific knowledge, promoting critical thinking and inspiring further reflections. The website offers a wide variety of ludic activities such as curiosities, interactive exercises and short courses. Moreover, teachers are offered free web-based material with full instructions to be developed in class. Since year 2013, the project has been developed and improved according to a comprehensive study about the realistic scenario of ICTs infrastructure in Brazilian schools and in full compliance with the best e-learning national and international recommendations.
Food irradiation is a processing and preservation technique to eliminate insects and parasites and reduce disease-causing microorganisms. Moreover, the process helps to inhibit sprouting and delay ripening, extending fresh fruits and vegetables shelf-life. Nevertheless, most Brazilian consumers seem to misunderstand the difference between irradiated food and radioactive food and the general public has major concerns about the negative health effects and environmental contamination. Society´s judgment and decision making are directly linked to perceived benefits and risks. The web-based project entitled ‘Scientific information about food irradiation: Internet as a tool to approach science and society’ was created by the Nuclear and Energetic Research Institute (IPEN), in order to offer an interdisciplinary approach to science education, integrating economic, ethical, social and political aspects of food irradiation. This project takes into account that, misinformation and unfounded preconceived ideas impact heavily on the acceptance of irradiated food and purchase intention by the Brazilian consumer. Taking advantage of the potential value of the Internet to enhance communication and education among general public, a research study was carried out regarding the possibilities and trends of Information and Communication Technologies among the Brazilian population. The content includes concepts, definitions and Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) about processes, safety, advantages, limitations and the possibilities of food irradiation, including health issues, as well as its impacts on the environment. The project counts on eight self-instructional interactive web courses, situating scientific content in relevant social contexts in order to encourage self-learning and further reflections. Communication is a must to improve public understanding of science. The use of information technology for quality scientific divulgation shall contribute greatly to provide information throughout the country, spreading information to as many people as possible, minimizing geographic distances and stimulating communication and development.
This paper presents the project and experiment-based fluid dynamics education in Meisei University, a private institution in Tokyo, Japan. We pay attention not only to the basic engineering courses but also to the practical aspect of engineering experience. So, we prepare courses called the Projects from I to VI. The Projects I and II are designed for the first year, III and IV are designated for the second year, V and VI are prepared for the third year, respectively. Each supervisor is responsible for two of these projects every year. When students take the Project V and VI at the third year, we automatically assume that these students will join the lab of the project for the graduation thesis. We would like to show our experience in the Project I in the summer term, 2016. In this project, we introduce a traction flight vehicle called Cat Flyer. This is a kind of a kite towed by a car for example. This is very similar to parasailing, but flight is possible even on the roads. Experiments in mechanical engineering education are also very important, and we would like to explain our course on centrifugal pump, venture, and orifice. Although these are described in detail in the text books of fluid dynamics, it is still crucial to have practical experiments as a student.
One of the great challenges presented in educational practice is how to ensure the students not only acquire knowledge of training courses throughout their academic life, but also how to apply it in their current professional activities. Consequently, aiming to incite changes in the education system of healthcare professionals noticed the inadequacy of the training providers to solve the social problems related to health, the education related to these procedures should initiate in the earliest years of process. Following that idea, there is another question that needs an answer: If the change in the education should start sooner, in the period of basic training of healthcare professionals, what guidelines should a permanent education program incorporate to promote changes in an already established system? For this reason, the objective of this paper is to present different views of the teaching-learning process, with the purpose of better understanding the behavior adopted by healthcare professionals, through bibliographic study. The conclusion was that more than imparting knowledge to the individual, a larger approach is necessary on permanent education programs concerning the performance of professional health services in order to foment significant changes in education.
Recently, Massive Open Online Courses (MOOCs) are becoming the new trend of education. There are many problems under the environment of Database Principle curriculum teaching process in MOOCs, such as teaching ideas and theories which are out of touch with the reality, how to carry out the technical teaching and interactive practice in the MOOCs environment, thus the methods of database course under the environment of MOOCs are proposed. There are three processes to deal with problem solving in the research, which are problems proposed, problems solved, and inductive analysis. The present research includes the design of teaching contents, teaching methods in classroom, flipped classroom teaching mode under the environment of MOOCs, learning flow method and large practice homework. The database designing ability is systematically improved based on the researching methods.
Nowadays, in Japan, variety of students get into a university and one of the main roles of introductory courses for freshmen is to make such students well prepared for subsequent intermediate courses. For that purpose, the flipped-mastery model is not enough because videos usually used in a flipped classroom is not adaptive and does not fit all freshmen with different academic performances. This paper proposes an ontology-navigated tutoring system called EduGraph. Using EduGraph, students can prepare for and review a class, in a more flexibly personalizable way than by videos. Structuralizing learning materials by its ontology, EduGraph also helps students integrate what they learn as knowledge, and makes learning materials sharable. EduGraph was used for an introductory course for freshmen. This application suggests that EduGraph is effective.
This paper discusses the current condition of tourism and its economic policy in Georgia. It analyzes and studies wellness tourism, as one of the directions of tourism; the newest niche in the wellness industry – triggering wellness resorts with medical ideology. The paper discusses the development tendencies of medical wellness resorts in Georgia and its main economic preferences. The main finding of the research is that Georgia is a unique place in the world according to the variety of medical recourses. This makes the opportunity to create and successfully operate medical wellness resorts, as well as develop it as a brand for Georgia in the world. The research represents the development strategies of tourism and its medical wellness resorts in Georgia, and offers recommendations based on the relevant conclusions.
The use of videoconferencing platforms adapted to teaching offers students the opportunity to take distance education courses in much the same way as traditional in-class training. The sessions can be recorded and they allow students the option of following the courses synchronously or asynchronously. Three typical profiles can then be distinguished: students who choose to follow the courses synchronously, students who could attend the course in synchronous mode but choose to follow the session off-line, and students who follow the course asynchronously as they cannot attend the course when it is offered because of professional or personal constraints. Our study consists of observing attendance at all distance education courses offered in the synchronous mode by the Computer Science and Software Engineering Department at Laval University during 10 consecutive semesters. The aim is to identify factors that influence students in their choice of attending the distance courses in synchronous mode. It was found that participation tends to be relatively stable over the years for any one semester (fall, winter summer) and is similar from one course to another, although students may be increasingly familiar with the synchronous distance education courses. Average participation is around 28%. There may be deviations, but they concern only a few courses during certain semesters, suggesting that these deviations would only have occurred because of the composition of particular promotions during specific semesters. Furthermore, course schedules have a great influence on the attendance rate. The highest rates are all for courses which are scheduled outside office hours.
Higher education students are increasingly enrolling in online courses, they are, at the same time, generating data about their learning process in the courses. Data collected in those technology enhanced learning spaces can be used to identify patterns and therefore, offer recommendations/personalized courses to future online students. Moreover, recommendations are considered key aspects for personalization in online learning. Taking into account the above mentioned context, the aim of this paper is to explore the perception of higher education students and teachers towards receiving recommendations in online courses. The study was carried out with 322 students and 10 teachers from two different faculties (Engineering and Education) from Mondragon University. Online questionnaires and face to face interviews were used to gather data from the participants. Results from the questionnaires show that most of the students would like to receive recommendations in their online courses as a guide in their learning process. Findings from the interviews also show that teachers see recommendations useful for their students’ learning process. However, teachers believe that specific pedagogical training is required. Conclusions can also be drawn as regards the importance of personalization in technology enhanced learning. These findings have significant implications for those who train online teachers due to the fact that pedagogy should be the driven force and further training on the topic could be required. Therefore, further research is needed to better understand the impact of recommendations on online students’ learning process and draw some conclusion on pedagogical concerns.
In this paper, a team of faculty members of the Petroleum Institute in Abu Dhabi, UAE representing six different courses across General Engineering (ENGR), Communication (COMM), and Design (STPS) worked together to establish a clear developmental progression of learning outcomes and performance indicators for targeted knowledge, areas of competency, and skills for the first three semesters of the Bachelor of Sciences in Engineering curriculum. The sequences of courses studied in this project were ENGR/COMM, COMM/STPS, and ENGR/STPS. For each course’s nine areas of knowledge, competency, and skills, the research team reviewed the existing learning outcomes and related performance indicators with a focus on identifying linkages across disciplines as well as within the courses of a discipline. The team reviewed existing performance indicators for developmental progression from semester to semester for same discipline related courses (vertical alignment) and for different discipline courses within the same semester (horizontal alignment). The results of this work have led to recommendations for modifications of the initial indicators when incoherence was identified, and/or for new indicators based on best practices (identified through literature searches) when gaps were identified. It also led to recommendations for modifications of the level of emphasis within each course to ensure developmental progression. The exercise has led to a revised Sequence Performance Indicator Mapping for the knowledge, skills, and competencies across the six core courses.
Although students’ interest level in pursuing Computer Science and related degrees are lower than previous decade, fundamentals of computers, specifically introductory level programming courses are either listed as core or elective courses for a number of non-computer science majors. Universities accommodate these non-computer science majored students either via creating separate sections of a class for them or simply offering mixed-body classroom solutions, in which both computer science and non-computer science students take the courses together. In this work, we demonstrated how we handle introductory level programming course at Sam Houston State University and also provide facts about our observations on students’ success during the coursework. Moreover, we provide suggestions and methodologies that are based on students’ major and skills to overcome the deficiencies of mix-body type of classes.