University of South Australia Research Colloquium 2016

161118 UniSA M2 TheatreAlways glad to visit University of South Australia. This year I had the opportunity to present in the NBE Research Colloquium 2016 the paper entitled: Horses for courses: Can trendy educational approaches work everywhere?

Main points:

Modern educational tools have well been incorporated in state of the art tertiary education institutions. In the old days, knowledge mainly existed in the lecture theatre, where the tutor would pass it to the students in a traditional way. Nowadays, information flows easily and there are different mediums for the students to access it. Thus, the tutors need to find ways in order to tempt students come to the lecture theatre, as the co-presence of students and tutors still provides important added value. In order to achieve that, tutors need to keep the students engaged and even play the role of an actor or a moderator as needed. Apart from the typical e-learning forums, tools such as Wordle, Prezi, PollEverywhere, Triventy and many others are used for online quizzes that engage the whole classroom. On the other hand, in an effort to simulate real practice and increase the engagement, group assignments are used and specialized software is used for the evaluation of individuals’ contribution. The emerging research questions are whether these tools can be used regardless of available infrastructure, whether culture plays a role in adaptation and whether they are indeed efficient in the learning process. Initial findings mainly based on self-reflection suggest that:
- no matter how simplistic the new tools are infrastructure plays a significant role in adaptation,
- culture is an important factor that can affect students’ response, especially when it comes to peer-evaluation,
- the new tools increase engagement but not sure that they do increase learning.