International Journal of Teaching and Case Studies (9 papers in press)
Teachers' beliefs of democratic educational practices: the case of Arab teachers in Israel
by Wajeeh Daher, Essa Al-Fahel, Abedulkarim Ayyoub
Abstract: It was the aim of the present study to examine teachers' beliefs about democracy in the classroom as a component of the classroom environment. This issue is especially important in the case of teachers who live in a traditional society as the Arab teachers in Israel. The participants were 498 Arab teachers from the Triangle area in Israel. The research results indicated that the participating teachers' beliefs about democracy in the classroom were 'normal' but not 'good'. Furthermore, the results showed that those teachers' beliefs in democracy have significant relationship with their background variables. It is suggested that a clear educational policy should be developed for confronting failures of the educational system. In addition, those teachers would benefit from participating in democracy workshops that prepare them for more democratic practices in the classrooms.
Keywords: Democracy; teachers' practices; teachers' beliefs.
Enhancing Programming Learning Environment with Physical Computing and Robotics: A Case Study of the American University of Kuwait
by Aaron Rababaah, Ahmad Rabaa'i
Abstract: Traditional style of teaching computer programming in computer science programs depends majorly on using standard input/output (Std-IO) as means of interaction between users and the machine. Std-IO is basically the keyboard and the monitor of the computer. In all programming classes, students are stuck between the keyboard and the monitor to interact with the computer and experience their results. Although this traditional environment has been the method to teach programming, we believe we can provide our students with a much more effective learning environment that enriches the students experience in many aspects including: introducing Physical Computing concept into programming to breakout from Std-IO into the numerous possibilities of interaction with the physical world, providing students with high-impact feedback through tangible data, enhancing the sense of responsibility by having to be cautious not only about a red-highlighted error message on the screen but much further to real problems with real systems .In this paper, we will present our case at the Department of Computer Science and Information Systems at the American University of Kuwait in introducing hardware devices, sensors, actuators, effectors, circuits and robots through a series of designed labs and experiences that progress from basic through intermediate to advanced skills. Further, we present the results of a course exist survey that shows the responses of all participating students. The analysis of the survey showed significant positive impact on many aspects including: student engagement, programming skills, hardware and physical computing exposure and student future retention. The overall mean of positive responses was 92.04%.
Keywords: Physical Computing; Robotics; Computer Programming; Hands-on experience; Enhancing Learning Environment.
Government and the Private Energy Sector in Russia: A Brief Review of the Literature
by Anastasia Cholacu
Abstract: A symbiotic relationship exists between the Russian state and Russian energy companies that often leads to conflicting institutional relationships between the state and private energy sector. The best example of this complicated relationship between the state and free markets is the case of the Russian energy giant, Gazprom. With the decline in the companys gas production and competitiveness in the Russian gas market, the Russian government may need to restructure Gazproms relations with independents to prevent it from strategically blocking important projects. Such a scenario calls for a much-needed re-evaluation of the conflicting institutional relationships between the Russian state and Gazprom. This literature review brings together key concepts playing a role in the relationship between Gazprom and the Russian state, effectively laying the foundation for future research to gain deeper insights into the future of one of the worlds largest energy companies.
Keywords: Energy sector; Russia; Gazprom; gas production; institutional relationships; dynamic capabilities framework.
International School Students, Cultural Homelessness and Home Culture Re-entry: A Brief Review of the Literature
by Danielle Swanston Kelley
Abstract: Adopting and maintaining a congruent cultural identity may be problematic for third culture kids (TCKs) who generally experience at least two cross-cultural moves: leaving their parents home culture for a new cultural setting, and re-entering their home culture. This literature review considers related issues of cultural homelessness, belonging and identity, home culture re-entry, and culture shock and reverse culture shock. The review also explores the shifting nature and changing student body make-up of international schools, and the associated impacts this has on TCKs in particular and society in general. This review was conducted as part of a larger qualitative research study targeting a deeper understanding of cultural homelessness and home culture re-entry through the narratives of TCKs regarding their experiences in an international school context. A synthesis of knowledge on this topic can be used to inform the development of appropriate counselling protocols for TCKs in the international school context.rnrn
Keywords: International school students; third culture kids; cultural homelessness; home culture re-entry; cultural identity.
Undergraduate Students Attitudes towards Research: Lessons from an International Branch Campus in the UAE
by Fehmida Hussain, Tenia Kyriazi, Lynda Hyland
Abstract: The study discusses efforts to inculcate a research culture among undergraduate students at an International Branch Campus of a British University in the UAE. It presents a case study of the work of a Student Research Committee, and analyses primary qualitative and quantitative data from a sample of undergraduate students. Findings indicate that students regard research as valuable, particularly in relation to their future careers. Nonetheless, perceived challenges associated with research are highlighted. Implications for practice are discussed.
Keywords: Student attitudes towards research; Higher education; Research culture.
How to develop cognitive skills through playing in pre-school contexts
by Vasiliki Brinia, Paraskevi Psoni
Abstract: The present study presents a traditional -non-digital- game, which aims at providing pre-school teachers with an innovative, experiential method of teaching cognitive skills to preschoolers. This game is originally designed in order for preschoolers to understand the meaning and the importance of the terms money and entreprises. Teachers themselves are exposed to the same playful experience in order to detect -before and after the game- their perceptions of the notions-to-teach and the game as a teaching method. Most of the interviewed teachers recognise the importance of playfulness in teaching as well as the importance of pupils understanding such notions at such an early age, which is also highlighted in the literature. The undermined importance of developing cognitive notions in preschoolers is underlined and this paper fulfills this gap by presenting an innovative approach of international value.
Keywords: playfulness; game-based learning; experiential learning; interventionist non-directional approach; cognitive skills; preschool teachers' perceptions.
Consolidations in Higher Education: A Business Programme Case Study
by Mark Hiatt, Sandra Vasa-Sideris, Ronny Richardson, Robin Cheramie, Greg Quinet, Muhammad Obeidat
Abstract: Consolidations and mergers in higher education have increased in frequency over the past decade in response to growing pressures to reduce costs while maintaining a quality-focused student experience. While mandated academic consolidations are typically finalised, the lack of a transfer of knowledge and experience from one merger action to another within a larger state or country university system has resulted in wasted resources, participant stress and unintended effects on the student population. In 2011, the University System of Georgia initiated a consolidation programme with a major goal of achieving a lower and more effective cost basis. This case study examines the undergraduate and graduate level business administration programme consolidation that occurred between Kennesaw State University and Southern Polytechnic State University during 2013-2015 as experienced by the authors of the study. The conduct of this programme consolidation as well as lessons learned and recommendations for future higher education consolidation efforts, particularly knowledge transfer for both academic researchers as well as higher education administrators, are offered as part of this case study.
Keywords: Keywords: mergers and acquisitions; merger and acquisition theory; academic mergers; person-organisation fit; organisational change.
ECONOMIC GROWTH AND REDUCED CARBON EMISSIONS: THE IMPACT OF CARBON PRICING POLICIES
by Meenakshi Rishi, Niranjan Chipalkatti
Abstract: Abstract:rnMany countries are adopting carbon pricing policies like carbon taxes and/or carbon cap and trade to address climate change. This paper answers two research questions within this context - what is the impact of carbon policies on the economic growth- carbon emissions nexus? And, does adoption of carbon pricing policies by a country result in an increased incentive to re-locate carbon intensive activities to other countries viz. the so-called pollution haven effect? Results suggest that cap and trade policies significantly reduce energy use per capita and mitigate carbon emissions. Global Cap and trade policies are significantly associated with higher economic growth in offshore manufacturing destinations but carbon taxes in adopting nations do not impel a similar effect. Neither type of carbon policy has a significant impact on energy use per capita and carbon intensity in top manufacturing destination countries. Our findings thus do not support a pollution haven effect. rn
Keywords: Carbon Emissions; Economic Growth; Carbon Policy; Carbon Taxes; Cap and Trade; Pollution Havens.
Evaluating the efficiency of two programming environments in shaping novices attitudes, perceptions, beliefs and knowledge in programming. A comparison between Scratch and App Inventor.
by Stamatios Papadakis
Abstract: The purpose of this study is to examine behavioral and learning differences between novice programmers in relation to the use of two different programming environments for novices, Scratch and App Inventor for Android (AIA). Initially, we assumed that due to the known characteristics of the two environments, students would improve their knowledge and behavioral approach towards programming. Given the characteristics of the AIA, we also assumed that students who were in the experimental group (teaching with AIA), would show more positive attitudes to programming, while they would significantly improve their knowledge score, in comparison with the control group (teaching with Scratch). The results of this study confirmed these hypotheses. All students improved their behavioral approach and their knowledge in programming, at the end of the intervention. In addition, students who were taught the AIA environment found to result in better learning outcomes and held more positive attitudes, perceptions and motivation to engage in programming than those who were taught using Scratch.
Keywords: MIT App Inventor; Scratch; Novice programmers; Secondary education.