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Developing Teaching and Learning Systems

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Developing Teaching and Learning Systems Individual Report Contents 1. Theory of learning, multiple choice test and reflection 1.a. The advantages offered by online marking 1.b. The drawbacks envisaged with using online testing 2. Discussion of managed learning environments 2.a. What is it? 2.b. What can it do? 2.c. What learning theories are supported by Blackboard? 3. Personal reflection on learning 3.a. Thoughtful reflection on the module 3.b. Reflection and critique of the teaching and learning experience created 3.c. Evaluation of the process the team used 3.d. Learning evaluation 4. Appendix 1 5. Assignment specification 1 Theory of learning multiple choice test and reflection With the current development of online teaching and learning and the emancipation of knowledge, it seems natural that this should also include online testing. To be a true teaching and learning experience interaction needs to take place, otherwise a website will just be another information site. 1.a. The advantages offered by online marking The online test set for the students of Salford Universities DTLS course offers many advantages to both the tutor and student. The tutor has the advantage of instantly monitoring the students:- * Understanding of a given subject * Strengths * Weaknesses * Progress being made The student will also be able to monitor the points mentioned above, but only if feedback is given on completion of the test. The DTLS test gave an immediate result at the end of the online test, mine being 100%. On a superficial level the relationship between the tutor and student in this test environment seemed to be active/passive or pedagogical. This is to a certain extent unavoidable, although the DTLS test did have some andragogy aspects to it. It was up to the person sitting the test to decide:- * Time constraints - when the test takes place (within given parameters) * The venue (home or University) * Sit the test with/without peers * The environment It is quite likely that all of the above influences could have a positive calming effect on the person being tested due to the feeling of self-empowerment. ...read more.


This type of learner can be seen in Maslows Hierarchy of Needs, namely self-actualisation. These are people that are self-motivated and need little or no encouragement. Whilst there are some occasions when the pedagogical theories would be used for teaching adults, such as people with learning difficulties, to the ordinary adult it could be perceived as being patronising. As well as the above mentioned theories Blackboard addresses the behaviourist problems. It does this by creating and arranging a website that's use results in prescribed behaviours. Cognitive and inquiry theory problems are addressed by the Blackboard webmaster creating a website that follows natural inquiry paths that are easy to follow. Another important aspect to andragogical learning is the third-force psychologist aspect. These are anonymous environments where the users become supportive and help each other to achieve their goals, and in some cases surpass them. Whilst blackboard has many good qualities it would appear that it will only be used as an aide to lecturers rather than a replacement to the more tradition teaching institutes. The exception to this would be people with logistics problems where attendance would be totally impractical. There is no real substitute for the human element of face to face discussion and interaction. The strengths of blackboard lie in its linking together of academic centers of excellence and the sharing of resources. 3 Personal reflection on learning 3.a. Thoughtful reflection on the module When this module started I was somewhat apprehensive as to what to expect. This was not helped by the confusion experienced in the first week where we had no lecturer and consequently no lecture. When the lectures eventually started I felt confident because I suddenly realized I was in familiar territory. This was largely due to the fact that I have already created a few websites in the past, although these were only information-based websites. When I had a look at the DTLS module website, I found the navigation a little bit confusing. ...read more.


The site and the test reflect this type of user within the (intentionally) limited scope of Simple Maths. 3. Problems to be set - Within Rogers experiential model he discusses the philosophy of how people learn and says they learn more effectively when they understand the reason for learning and it's relevance to themselves. To this end we not only wanted to explain how to solve a problem but also to set a test for user interaction, that would give feedback. As soon as there was some tangible contribution from all the team members, everyone felt more comfortable. At this stage we started to pull together as a team again. 3.d. Learning evaluation Without self-motivation I feel that this module, as would most of the course, been doomed to failure. It put the androgogy model to the test and I feel that each one of us, consciously or not, has learnt from it. The team was highly motivated to produce a good piece of work at the start of the module. After a couple of weeks self-doubt and negative thoughts about the module started to creep into the psyche of some team members. As mentioned in the Salford University (2002) course notes, as soon as adults "...walk into an activity labeled 'education' or 'training', they are conditioned by previous school experiences to on their dunces hats of dependency, fold their arms, sit back, and say "teach me." It seemed that people who were used to the Pedagogy model of teaching minors get confused when given the freedom of the andragogy model. They viewed the freedom, as a prison to which there was no way out, not thinking they had the key in their hand all the time. This key being, research and the readiness to learn and explore rather than being spoon-fed. I have learned a great deal from this module and totally identify with the androgogy model. Personally, the module was as much about creating a website for teaching and learning as it was about understanding ones self-awareness of the subject. ...read more.

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