International Journal of Technology Enhanced Learning (17 papers in press)
Chao: a framework for the development of orchestration technologies for Technology-Enhanced Learning activities using tablets in classrooms
by Patrick Wang, Pierre Tchounikine, Matthieu Quignard
Abstract: In Technology-Enhanced Learning, orchestration technologies refer to computer systems which support teachers in the orchestration of learning applications. Due to the specificity and diversity of each learning application, the use of these orchestration technologies is often not adequate in situations they were not designed for in the first place. In this article, we tackle this issue and present the software framework Chao. This framework has been designed to provide a set of classes, methods, and user interfaces to facilitate the development of orchestration technologies for tablets. The evaluation of this framework concerns its design, the usability of its user interfaces, and its ability to be adapted for various learning applications. The results suggest that teachers found the instances of the framework useful in assisting them during their orchestration tasks, and that little work is required to instantiate the framework.
Keywords: framework; orchestration technologies; technology-enhanced learning; classroom orchestration; tablets.
Automatic summary of teachers error feedback based on a taxonomy
by Hakim Mokeddem, Cyrille Desmoulins, Nadine Mandran, Rachid Chalal
Abstract: This paper presents an algorithm that computes the most common error types reported by teachers on students lab reports in LabBook system. These common error types aim to improve students learning by helping teachers to take necessary corrective actions. Computing the most common error types is not obvious because of their taxonomic structure. Thus, using frequencies of error types leads to select the uppermost type as the most common one. For this reason, two other parameters are taken into account in addition to the type frequency: a type generality level and a number of type subtypes. To define a computing algorithm, the most common error types are formalised with three rules where each rule uses one parameter. The algorithm proposed is based on a ranking function that respects the three rules. It assigns a score to an error type by multiplying its frequency with a weight function based on information content.The feature that provides common error types to teachers was implemented using semantic web technologies. The results of a qualitative study conducted with teachers showed that experienced teachers used and combined the algorithm rules to select the most common error types that can help them take corrective actions efficiently.
Keywords: Error types; formative assessment; semantic web; taxonomy.
Comparing novice programming environments for use in secondary education: App Inventor for Android vs. Alice.
by Stamatios Papadakis, Vasilleios Orfanakis
Abstract: Coding is part of logical thinking and is one of the basic skills which are known as 21st-century skills. Coding acquisition is necessary as it is used in a wide range of occupations. However, computer programming is difficult to learn and programming courses often have high dropout rates. Novice programmers suffer from a wide range of difficulties and deficits. Research in teaching and learning programming across different countries and educational contexts, reveal that novice programmers face the same challenges in their efficiency of writing, debugging and running programs. These difficulties have led those involved in the teaching of programming to further consider the most effective ways that can facilitate novice programmers in learning the basic programming concepts. Visual programming environments which support the construction of programs through a drag-and-drop interface are among the most popular coding tools for teaching novice programmers. In this paper, we investigate the use of Alice and App Inventor for Android, with regards to their effectiveness for teaching and learning programming in secondary education students.
Keywords: Alice; App Inventor for Android; novice programmers; visual programming environments.
Discussion-Facilitator: Towards Enabling Students with Hearing Disabilities to Participate in Classroom Discussions
by Mohammad Alzubaidi, Mwaffaq Otoom
Abstract: Class participation plays a vital role in the learning process during classroom instruction. Deaf students often have difficulty participating in class discussions. Several studies have shown that deaf people are better able to interpret speech when they can view the lip movements of a speaker. This paper proposes an assistive device, called the Discussion-Facilitator, which aims to enable deaf students to better participate in classroom discussions. This is done by combining the speech-recognized text of the lecture with a live video stream that is zoomed-in on the lecturer's face. The student is also able to write a text response and play it on loud speakers.
Nine deaf students conducted a usability test. The results show that viewing lip movements combined with the speech-recognized text of the lecturer contributed to the understanding of the lecturers speech, and that our prototype makes the engagement of deaf students in classroom discussion more effective.
Keywords: Lip Reading; Class Participation and Discussion; Assistive Technology; Deaf/Hard of Hearing; Image Processing and Computer Vision.
A multi-agents system to compute human learning indicators activities based on model driven engineering approach
by Tarek Djouad, Benmohammed Mohammed
Abstract: This paper presents a multi-agent architecture and its implementation for facilitating the evaluation of learners activities in real learning situations mediated by a Technology Enhanced Learning systems. Our proposal is based on model driven engineering using modeled activity traces to compute human learning indicators. We claim this approach facilitates the computation, the management and the reuse of learning indicators independently of any learning platform.
Keywords: Technology Enhanced Learning systems; Multi-agents systems; Model driven engineering; Activity traces; Human learning indicators.
Challenges concerning deep learning in SPOCs
by Renee M. Filius, Renske A.M. De Kleijn, Sabine G. Uijl, Frans J. Prins, Harold V.M. Van Rijen, Diederick E. Grobbee
Abstract: Higher education institutions aim for deep learning and are increasingly providing their education through an online medium. SPOCs are a specific form of online education that has rapidly grown in the last decade. In this study 11 SPOC-instructors have been interviewed about the challenges they face when the aim is to promote deep learning. Five main challenges in achieving deep learning in SPOCs were identified: 1.) Alignment in learning activities, 2.) Insight into students needs, 3.) Adaptivity in teaching strategy, 4.) Social cohesion, and 5.) Creating dialogue. These results indicate that SPOCs have distinctive challenges compared to other forms of online education. Instructors may have to place more emphasis on the social and teaching activities compared to the cognitive activities of the course. Instructors can take the results into account while developing and teaching SPOCs. Consequently, it shows the need for training in how to design and teach SPOCs.
Keywords: Deep learning; SPOCs; challenges; MOOCs; online education; online learning; teaching/ learning strategies; Community of Inquiry.
Students Perception of Quizlet as a Chinese Learning Tool: A Preliminary Study
by Eddie T. C. Lam, Lih-Ching Wang, Xiao Wan Zhao
Abstract: Since its depute in 2010, the Quizlet has grown to become a popular multi-purpose language learning tool. The purpose of the study was to examine the perception of the Quizlet as a tool to learn Chinese. Participants were 7th grade (n=15) and 8th grade (n=17) students enrolled in the Chinese language programs of a middle school. The measuring instrument consisted of 18 items. Item respond was based on a 5-point Likert-type scale. The Cronbach's alpha of the questionnaire was .913, indicating its high internal consistency. Results of the one sample t-tests showed that there were three significant items among each of the 7th and 8th graders. Overall, students are reluctant to use the Quizlet every day or use it at home. The students also do not like the printed Quizlet and paper flashcards. Nevertheless, future studies should include a larger sample and compare the effectiveness of different language learning software.
Keywords: student performance; vocabulary learning; flashcards; instructional technology.
Semi-Supervised Algorithm with Knowledge-based Features for Learner's Profiles Interoperability
by Leila Ghorbel, Corinne Amel Zayani, Ikram Amous, Florence Sedes
Abstract: Nowadays, the user can have several profiles found in different adaptive systems relative to various fields. In particular, adaptive e-learning systems respond to a strong need to adapt to each learner their proposed activities based on the data stored in his/her profile (learning-style, interest, etc.). However, each system can have incomplete data as far as the learner is concerned. Hence, the exchange of the learner's profile data is extremely important in order to enhance his/her learning experience. The exchange requires a matching process so as to resolve the large number of a learner's profiles differences whether in syntax, structure or semantics. In this context, we propose a matching process to automatically detect the similarity between the profile elements.rnThe originality of this process resides in the fact that it rests on a new semi-supervised Tri-Training algorithm which significantly improves the state of the art approaches.
Keywords: Learner's profiles; e-learning; interoperability;matching; mapping;Tri-Training; knowledge-based features.
Methodological proposal of financial modelling using dynamic scenarios from multivariable data tables
by Juan David González-Ruiz, Eduardo Duque, Alejandro Pena, Jovani Jimenez, Alejandro Patiño
Abstract: This paper aims at proposing a methodological strategy for teaching the modelling of dynamic scenarios from Multivariable Data Tables using Microsoft Excel® as a technological tool. It provides a step-by-step guide for improving the teaching-learning method on the development of financial models, which could also be used in other areas. The methodology allows identifying the most important aspects of developing financial models so students-professors could be guided towards a more pedagogical approach promoting the incorporation of technological tools in the classroom. This work plays a pivotal role in financial modelling teaching since it provides relevant elements leading to the development of systematic thinking among university students based on cognitive activities. Also, various contributions to research on the teaching-learning process in modelling are discussed. For validating the proposal, an airport's financial valuation was used as a case study. As a result, this paper contributes to increasing the role of computational tools and students-professors involvement in the development of systemic thinking and cognitive skills.
Keywords: financial modelling; learning-teaching; Excel; cognitive skills
An Agent-Based Approach for Personalized and Adaptive Learning
by Smain Nasr-Eddine Bouzenada, Olivier Boissier, Nacer Eddine Zarour
Abstract: Most of learning systems deliver the same learning materials when they aim to produce the same learning unit. It turned out that learning process could significantly be improved if learning content could be specifically personalized and adapted to individual learners’ domain knowledge and capabilities. Few learning systems introduce teaching strategies to satisfy individual learners’ requirements. In an attempt to overcome these limitations, we propose a multi-agent system which is based upon learning styles concepts for its adaptability and domain knowledge for its personalization. In this paper, we describe the design and implementation of the learning system research contribution; in particular we discuss the learning resources collecting process, the personalized process and the adaptive process. The system has been tested through several functional experiments, and the analysis of the simulation study indicates that the approach is able to handle personalized and adaptive learning.
Keywords: Multi-Agent; e-learning; learning styles; teaching styles; learner’s profile; adaptive learning; personalized learning.
User Interface Preferences of Young Jordanians Using Tablet Devices
by Ahmed Al-Sa'di, Dave Parry, Philip Carter
Abstract: We aimed to establish Arabic user interface (UI) guidelines for tablet PCs (tablets). This paper presents the findings of two studies with 21 Arabic-speaking Jordanian students to gauge their preferences. Initial UI design guidelines were formulated for font type, size, colour, text alignment, menu and button type. Gender differences were found in font type preferences as well as the desire to customise the application’s appearance. Sensibilities around religious symbols were also discovered. The use of coaching and think-aloud in the usability approach assisted in allowing the research to be appropriately sensitive to the beliefs and culture of the subjects. It is anticipated that the research findings will help software companies in Jordan and other Arabic-speaking nations to enhance UI for Arabic mobile and tablet applications.
Keywords: User Interface; Arabic Users; Usability; Tablet PCs; Gender; Educational Application
Influence of Online Retailers’ Social Media Marketing Strategies on Students’ Perceptions Towards e-Shopping: a qualitative study
by Marcos Komodromos, Tao Papaioannou, Mohammed Alhaji Adamu
Abstract: The usage of the Internet-based technologies,particularly social networking sites such as Facebook and Twitter as business platforms can be a critical strategy in enhancing an online retail outlet’s reach and operational efficiency.This study employs a qualitative study with twenty in-depth interviews to explore the factors/strategies that influence students’ acceptance of e-shopping.The objectives of the study were to examine students’ perceptions of e-shopping via the social media fan pages of Konga and Jumia online stores and their perceptions about the difference in the influence of the online marketing strategies on acceptance of e-shopping between Konga and Jumia online stores.The results highlight students’ perceptions of e-shopping via the social pages and they find e-shopping experience very interesting and fun.The most important motivating factor which influenced the online shopping in Konga and Jumia online stores are the marketing strategies that companies use and convenience followed by time saving and price for consumers.
Keywords: e-shopping; social media; Facebook; Twitter; online retail shops; consumers; engagement
Scaffolding reflection: prompting social constructive metacognitive activity in non-formal learning
by Tracie Farrell Frey, Karolina Iwa, Alexander Mikroyannidis
Abstract: The study explores the effects of three different types of non-adaptive, metacognitive scaffolding on social, constructive metacognitive activity and reflection in groups of non-formal learners. Six triads of non-formal learners were assigned randomly to one of the three scaffolding conditions: structuring, problematising or epistemological. The triads were then asked to collaboratively resolve an ill-structured problem and record their deliberations. Evidence from think-aloud protocols was analysed using conversational and discourse analysis. Findings indicate that epistemological scaffolds produced more social, constructive metacognitive activity than either of the two other scaffolding conditions in all metacognitive activities except for task orientation, as well as higher quality interactions during evaluation and reflection phases. However, participants appeared to be less aware of their activities as forming a strategic, self-regulatory response to the problem. This may indicate that for learning transfer, it may be necessary to employ an adaptive, facilitated reflection on learners' activities.
Keywords: epistemic cognition; epistemology; ill-structured problems; intragroup metacognition; metacognitive prompts; non-formal learning; reflection; scaffolding metacognition; self-regulated learning; social constructive metacognition.
Factors related to Facebook use for academic purposes: the case for social studies courses at the university level
by Mohammad Jawarneh
Abstract: The primary purpose of this study was to determine the impact of perceived usefulness and perceived ease of use of Facebook on the behaviour intentions of university students to use Facebook for academic purposes. Based on the technology acceptance model, a path model with three links was developed. The results supported the hypothesised path model. The path model clearly revealed that university students' usage intentions of Facebook for academic purposes was influenced by two factors. The results of the study indicated that perceived ease of use was a highly influential factor with direct effect impacting usage intentions of Facebook followed by perceived usefulness. The results also showed that perceived ease of use has a positive direct effect on perceived usefulness. Finally, this study provided some evidence that this path model is beneficial in determining usage intentions of Facebook for academic purposes at the university level.
Keywords: academic purposes; ease of use; Facebook; social studies; university students; usage intentions; usefulness.
Measuring e-learning readiness: the case of Palestinian public secondary schools
by Rami Issa, Ayham A.M. Jaaron
Abstract: Despite its promise, numerous challenges have hampered the implementation of e-learning in developing countries. This study examines the e-learning readiness of public secondary schools in Palestine focusing on aspects that present as strengths and challenges. Following a review of the literature, an e-readiness instrument was developed which relied upon an assessment suggested by Akaslan and Law. Teachers (n = 644) in public secondary schools in 11 directorates across the West Bank region completed the assessment and several e-learning and education experts and professionals were interviewed. The overall readiness was found to be at a Level 3, Ready but needs few improvements based on Aydin and Tasci's assessment model. Perceived Usefulness was found to possess the highest level of readiness, whereas Content Availability the lowest. The findings provide implications on the adoption of e-learning in public secondary schools including a conceptual framework for understanding e-readiness in developing countries.
Keywords: e-learning paradigm; e-readiness assessment; Palestine; public secondary schools; student-centred learning.
'Interactive evaluation' of an e-learning course within the context of blended education
by Dimitris Laskaris, Michail Kalogiannakis, Emmanuel Heretakis
Abstract: The focus of this paper is the evaluation of an online course designed and developed within the context of blended learning for the Department of Communication and Media of the University of Athens. The course was based on the principles of distance learning; it utilised the open-source learning management system - Moodle, and it was implemented as an action research project for three consecutive semesters (2014-2016). Its pedagogical aim was to investigate a prototype model of digital learning: the 'interactive evaluation' that was embodied in the design of the e-course and in the cycles of action research. Acting as creators, teachers and researchers in order to investigate the student-evaluators' perceptions of the e-course, we attempted to 'produce' wider knowledge of the assessment criteria within the context of blended education. In particular, the how and why specific learning criteria and critical approach to knowledge can be organised as more general constructivist and student-centred indexes of the learning technology. As a case study, the research outcomes revealed factors related to expression of interest, encouragement for participation and motivation of students to infiltrate, evaluate the e-course and contribute to remodelling its educational material.
Keywords: action research; case study; criteria indexes of assessing e-learning; evaluation methods of digital learning; Moodle.
Using computer animation for emergency medicine education
by Huilong Zheng, Nicoletta Adamo-Villani, Tim McGraw, Rosanne Griggs
Abstract: An experiment was conducted to investigate the effectiveness of animation for emergency medicine education. Two groups of participants were assessed on their ability to respond to three medical emergency situations in simulated test scenarios. The control group received instruction in traditional lecture/demo format, whereas the experimental group received instruction from a computer animation. Participants' knowledge of the medical emergencies response procedures was assessed according to speed and accuracy of the treatment, and ability to complete every step and execute the steps in the correct order. Results revealed no statistically significant difference in procedural knowledge between the control and experimental groups.
Keywords: animation-assisted education; computer animation; e-learning; educational technologies; emergency medicine; medical education; online training; technology-assisted learning.