Saturday, 25 June 2011

Blog papers Bjet - short list of interesting articles

Churchill, D. (2009), Educational applications of Web 2.0: Using blogs to support teaching and learning. British Journal of Educational Technology, 40: 179–183. doi: 10.1111/j.1467-8535.2008.00865.x

Postgraduates in Hong Kong use Blogs, in a case study

Liu, E. Z. F., Shih, R. C. and Tsai, Y. L. (2011), Hyperlink network analysis of the educational blog. British Journal of Educational Technology, 42: E25–E29. doi: 10.1111/j.1467-8535.2010.01150.x

hyperlink study of educational blogs

Wang, Y.-S., Lin, H.-H. and Liao, Y.-W. (2011), Investigating the individual difference antecedents of perceived enjoyment in students' use of blogging. British Journal of Educational Technology, 42: no. doi: 10.1111/j.1467-8535.2010.01151.x

With the proliferation of weblogs (blogs) used in educational contexts, gaining a better understanding of why students are willing to blog has become an important topic for practitioners and academics. The main purpose of this study is to explore the individual difference antecedents of perceived enjoyment and examine how they influence blogging intention through the mediation of perceived enjoyment. Based on previous literature, the Big Five personality traits (ie, extraversion, agreeableness, conscientiousness, neuroticism and openness to experience), as well as computer self-efficacy and personal innovation in information technology, are hypothesised as potential antecedents of perceived enjoyment in the acceptance of blogging. Data collected from a sample of 358 students at seven universities in Taiwan were tested against the research model using the structural equation modelling approach. The results indicate that extraversion, agreeableness, conscientiousness and personal innovation in information technology have a significant influence on perceived enjoyment, which in turn significantly influences blogging intention. The findings of this study provide several theoretical and practical implications for educational uses of blogging

Minocha, S., Schroeder, A. and Schneider, C. (2011), Role of the educator in social software initiatives in further and higher education: A conceptualisation and research agenda. British Journal of Educational Technology, 42: no. doi: 10.1111/j.1467-8535.2010.01131.x

Higher and further education institutions are increasingly using social software tools to support teaching and learning. A growing body of research investigates the diversity of tools and their range of contributions. However, little research has focused on investigating the role of the educator in the context of a social software initiative, even though the educator is critical for the introduction and successful use of social software in a course environment. Hence, we argue that research on social software should place greater emphasis on the educators, as their roles and activities (such as selecting the tools, developing the tasks and facilitating the students' interactions with these tools) are instrumental in a social software initiative. To address this gap, we have developed a research agenda on the role of the educator in a social software initiative. Drawing on role theory, both as the basis for a systematic conceptualization of the educator role and as a guiding framework, we have developed a series of concrete research questions that address core issues associated with the educator roles in a social software context. We have provided recommendations for further investigations. By developing a research agenda, we hope to stimulate research that creates a better understanding of the educator's situation and develops guidelines to help educators carry out their social software initiatives. Considering the significant role an educator plays in the initiation and conduct of a social software initiative, our research agenda ultimately seeks to contribute to the adoption and efficient use of social software in education.

Liu, E. Z. F. and Chang, Y. F. (2010), Gender differences in usage, satisfaction, self-efficacy and performance of blogging. British Journal of Educational Technology, 41: E39–E43. doi: 10.1111/j.1467-8535.2009.00939.x

Monday, 20 June 2011

student as producer - multi-discipline approach

Activity: Learning Co-laboratories

Learning co-laboratories are teaching and learning projects involving large groups of undergraduate students, around five hundred, from within one faculty, working in multidisciplinary teams (ten members) with faculty academic staff. The co-laboratory takes place over the period of one week. Each group creates a product of academic value around a concept based on the theme of the co-laboratory. Outputs: exhibition of student work, short documentary films and podcasts about the event.

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Wednesday, 15 June 2011

Thursday, 9 June 2011

Using Electronic Voting and Feedback: Developing HOT skills inlearners

Presenter: Dr Trevor Barker

Institution: University of Hertfordshire

Theme: Evidence of effective use of technologies in teaching for students learning

Students cohort 1: 55 M level Computing students

Student cohort 2: 250 year 1 computing students

Issue: Students are poor at using higher level thinking skills and connecting disparate parts of the course together in a finish piece of software

Overview of process cohort 1:

1.    Produce a piece of software to a given criteria in a team of 2

2.    All pieces are shown and all students mark them using the criteria and ‘clickers’

3.    The accumulated mark from this makes up 20% of their final mark.

4.    They are also given a small mark depending how close they are to the tutors mark

Extensive research was undertaken to find evidence of tactical marking. Non was found, but poor students tended to be further way from tutors mark.

Overview of process cohort 2:

1.    Students used clickers to mark past students work (websites) in a lecture session.

2.    (not totally sure about this) They were given a mark for how close they were to tutors mark

The result of this was a 6% increase in marks for the end of module assessment.


The work described in this paper relates to research undertaken at the University of Hertfordshire with a group of 240 first year undergraduates following a Computer Science / Information Technology module in Electronic Media Design. An important objective of this module is the development and evaluation of online multimedia materials by learners. This is measured in a final practical assessment under exam conditions. Previously the module delivery team had experienced difficulty in achieving this objective. Assignments such as this assess a range of skills including screen design, usability, human computer interaction, multimedia presentation and programming. It was evident that many learners were not engaging deeply with the work and for that reason the quality of the materials produced was not as high as we would have liked. Our hypothesis was that despite our efforts, some learners were failing to internalize the criteria relating to the quality of such artifacts. It was not that learners were unable to produce the required standard, they were not clear as to the issues and criteria involved. For this reason we decided to change our approach to the assignment by using an electronic voting system (EVS). We used this in a session where we presented examples of systems produced in previous years. Students marked the work and compared their marks with the mark awarded by the tutor. A great deal of discussion followed (often heated), both during the session and on the discussion forum of the MLE. Students were engaging deeply with the issues and discussing the criteria. Examples of this discussion will be presented in the paper. Statistical analysis of the results of the assignment compared to previous cohorts showed a significant increase of over 6%. Anecdotally we agreed that the quality of the work had improved greatly. Details of this work, statistical analysis and possible reasons for the improvement will be discussed in the paper.

Demanding Feedback: Supporting the few not supplying the many

Presenters: Ollie Jones & Dr Andrea Gorra

Institution: Leeds Metropolitan University

Theme: Using technologies to support challenges in learning and teaching and assessment

Students: 260 level 2 business studies

Details on the process:

Student submit online and are encourage to predict grade with online tool

1.    Students are given an audio file giving generic feedback to all students 2 weeks after the submission 23% of students listened to this feedback

2.    Students access a rubric type feedback for them individually and their grade at week 3 around 45% of students looked at the rubric

3.    Then the students are offered more detailed personal feedback if they wish. 22% of the students requested this.


The majority of the students who requested the additional feedback were in the bottom or top range of marks. The majority of student, those in the middle did not request the additional feedback


Feedback is considered important by academics - who spend a considerable amount of their time writing and dealing with it - , as well as by students who frequently expressed dissatisfaction with current feedback practices, as can for example be seen in past National Student Surveys. Particularly at larger HE institutions, the larger student to staff ratio means that feedback is provided to the students (typically) in written form. Some authors question the efficacy of providing large scale feedback on summative work to students. This paper outlines an action research project based in a UK Business School which involved offering feedback „on demand and tracking student access of feedback via the Virtual Learning Environment [VLE]. Several authors have looked at a range of reasons why students do not collect their feedback but this paper investigates the characteristics of the student that does collect and seek feedback, in particular whether students are most likely to seek feedback where the students final grade is much less than their expected grade. Using a range of survey methods as well as data from the VLE the paper seeks to establish how many students do collect feedback, how and when they collect the feedback and ultimately why they do so. We believe that offering all students detailed feedback on summative work does not meet their self perceived needs, as student cohorts are not homogenous in their feedback preferences. It is also not resource efficient for academic staff to provide detailed and lengthy feedback to all students based on the low usage numbers that this paper finds. Students should be offered a hierarchy of feedback with the feedback channels requiring the most resource required being offered „on demand rather than universally applied, thereby focusing the limited resources of academics on those students who need it most.

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Solstice conference 2011, my thoughts

Thanks for a really inspiring conference, as always. I never fail to return from solstice without a few new ideas, and this time I got two in one day. On top of that both where really well researched and presented. Here's a quick overview

Mark Childs and his exploration of second life and the importance of on line presence was useful, but I fear these types of projects might be fast disappearing from learning tech field .It's very research worthy, and pushes the boundaries, but has limited mass transference to a range of subject. The current climate unfortunately means we are far too focused on the here and now. Well done for getting the US research (very jealous).
Beck Colley hit my concerns and current focus just right. A very passionate delivery with the right balance of aspiration, practicality, doom and a little hope. The main focus being the students, their real needs and how to meet them. I shall thinking a great deal about student "belonging" in the coming year.

The two presentations I enjoyed the most were
Dr Trevor Baker using PRS to develop students understanding of marking criteria. He had a very rigorous and ingenious process that was improving grades by 6%.

Dr Andrea Gorra who was presenting research into student asking for different levels of feedback rather than tutors supply personalised feedback for all. This was a very innovative and a challenging idea that provoked debate. But I think it is very worthy of further investigation.

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Tuesday, 7 June 2011

My Presentation for Solstice Tomorrow

Presentation Template.ppt.pptx Download this file

This presentation explains the use of rapid evaluation methods to support and develop staff use of learning technology. There are an increasing number of academics developing more complex and ambitious using of learning technology. An example of this would be the increasing use of wiki or blog activities. These staff are unaccustomed to the impacts these designs might have on student learning. Although all possible attempts are made to design out any possible issues, it is understood that no design is perfect first time. The numbers of staff involved in these initiatives make it difficult for the AEU at LJMU to dedicate time to supporting evaluation. A flexible evaluation processes is needed to highlight issues and possible solutions to improve the design. This process also needs to encourage its adoption by the academics, for reasons of sustainability and to promote the ideas of reflective practice. To meet these requirements, a low-level, rapid evaluation method has been developed to support academics wishing to explore the impact of LT in their modules. This method uses Personal Response System (PRS) to gather questionnaire results, which is then coupled with an open discussion on those results by the students. The staff member then analyses the results and plan improvements accordingly.

The use of the PRS provides a rapid turnaround of data, but it is also allows the students to view their accumulated results, and then analyse them as part of the discussion. The staff members also receive the data and the transcriptions far quicker. The design also seeks to mediate and connect the learning experience with the teaching experience, by providing a voice to both parties. The method is low-level, as the analysis in not in depth, and is focused on particular aspects of design.

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Wednesday, 1 June 2011

Bohm quote on dialogue

Bonn see science not as the construction of new knowledge, because all knowledge will be disproved in the future. But as the act if creating mental maps that bring about a constant mutual participation between nature and consciousness.

He sees this as a collective endeavour. But one that is largely incoherent and the result being counterproductive. This is mainly discuss rather than have dialogue with each other. Discuss is more about winning than arriving at a conclusion
1965 the special theory of relativity This is from the fifth principle

Sent from my iPod

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