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Factors influencing parental attitudes toward digital game-based learning.

Description: The purpose of this non-positivistic mixed-methods study is to examine parental attitudes towards the use of computer and video games in their child’s classroom and to investigate how the sociocultural contexts in which parents live affect those attitudes. The research was conducted using a mixed-methods triangulation design, including both quantitative and qualitative techniques. First, the study tried to identify which groups of parents were better positioned to accept and support digital game-based learning and which groups were less likely to have a positive attitude toward integrating digital games into the classroom. This study tried to determine if socioeconomic status, age, education level, and/or cultural background could serve as a predictor of parental attitudes toward digital game-based learning. Second, the study tried to recognize how social and cultural contexts in which parents live affect their attitudes toward digital games in the classroom. Many researchers agree that parents play an important role in students’ and eventually, educators’ attitudes toward gaming. It has been argued that if parents accept a certain non-traditional (digital) learning tool, then their children would most likely have a similar attitude toward it. Parents might be the support system that educators need in order to ensure that students are able to see the educational value of video games and are willing to think critically and draw connections between what they learn in a gaming environment and core subject areas.
Date: May 2016
Creator: Piller, Yulia
Partner: UNT Libraries

The Implications of Social Media: Secondary Teachers' use of Social Media for Personal, Professional, and Instructional Purposes

Description: Social media has the potential to be a critical force in creating connected educators. The collaborative nature of social media encourages personal connection, professional enrichment, and learning through co-creation of meaning. Secondary teachers are in a place that would permit them to harness these affordances, not only in their personal and professional environments, but also in their classrooms. This qualitative phenomenographic study aimed to uncover how secondary teachers used social media for personal, professional, and instructional purposes. Further, this study sought to understand secondary teachers' attitudes and beliefs toward social media. Their current state of social media use was also of interest, as were the types of relations secondary teachers had with social media. To better understand the stories and experiences realized by these educators, ten secondary teachers were engaged using a semi-structured interview process. These teachers presented with varying backgrounds, education, and teaching focus. The interviews provided a textual representation of their social media stories. Interview transcripts were transposed into thick rich accounts describing their experiences, thoughts, ideas, and how they understood social media in their personal, professional, and instructional lives. It was found that the current state of social media use by secondary teachers was primarily limited to personal and professional purposes. Teachers used it to connect with family and friends. They used it to connect with like-minded educators and personal learning networks to locate teaching resources. Many expressed that they could see a benefit of students interacting and learning from others through social media. In the end, however, they did not use social media for instructional purposes. The majority voiced concerns about student privacy, a feeling of not being able to control what students were doing on social media, a lack of training for themselves and students, possible inappropriate behavior, and the inability to access social media ...
Date: August 2016
Creator: Quintanilla, Brenda U
Partner: UNT Libraries

Using Situated Learning, Community of Practice, and Guided Online Discourse in Healthcare Education for Learning Effective Interprofessional Communication

Description: The problem exists that there are no education initiatives focused on teaching and taking into practice the skills of effective interprofessional discourse in this online, asynchronous, professional environment. The purpose of this study was to examine whether it is possible for students in the health professions to learn to practice effective interprofesssional online discourse in an electronic health record. This was a mixed methods study that included both quantitative ad qualitative inquiry underpinned by post positivism and used a method triangulation research design model. Both quantitative and qualitative data were collected and analyzed from an educational intervention and simulated electronic health record exercise. The students' perceptions of their practice in an electronic health record did not necessarily match their knowledge and skills in this group of students. Emergent themes from the study pointed in the possible direction of perceived value of the exercise, prior experience in an electronic health record, and logistical barriers to the activity. Perceived time constraints was a particularly strong concern of the students. The emergent themes might be valuable considerations for other interprofessional programs looking to implement similar activities concerning the electronic health record.
Date: December 2016
Creator: Krumwiede, Kimberly A.H.
Partner: UNT Libraries

Building an Understanding of International Service Learning in Librarianship

Description: From the very beginning, library education has been a mixture of theory and practice. Dewey required apprenticeships to be part of the first library school at the University of Chicago as a method to indoctrinate new professional. Today, acculturation is incorporated into the professional education through a large variety of experiential learning techniques, including internships, practicum, field work, and service learning projects, all of which are designed to develop some level of professional skills within an information organization. But, what is done for understanding library culture? It is said that one cannot truly recognize the extent of one's own cultural assumptions, until they have experienced another. This study followed a group of LIS graduate students that took that next step – going to Russia. By employing a critical hermeneutic methodology, this study sought to understand what value students gain by from working on an assessment project in an international school library. Using a horizon analysis, the researcher established the worldview of participants prior to their departure, analyzed their experience through post-experience interviews, and constructed an understanding of value. Among other concepts, the researcher looked specifically to see whether "library cultural competency", understanding library culture in global context, was developed through working on a service learning project within an international school library. This dissertation provides feedback for the program leaders and ideas for future research.
Date: December 2016
Creator: Walczyk, Christine
Partner: UNT Libraries

Adult Learning: Evaluation of Preferences for Technology and Learning Sources for Workplace Learning

Description: The purpose of this research was to provide an initial investigation of the preferences for both technology and learning sources that are available today in the modern workplace at a large financial institution with a national presence in the USA. In addition to the preferences of the participants, the research includes insights about the culture of the learning organization by using the Dimension of Learning Organization Questionnaire (DLOQ) and two preference surveys. The research methods used in this study are categorized as mixed methods and include both quantitative and qualitative methods. This study is nonpositivist and descriptive. It is based on a triangulation design method which is comprised of analysis from data obtained from the DLOQ and preference surveys, as well as semi-structured interviews with several survey participants. The results of the studies provide the foundational information for an extended quantitative analysis.
Date: December 2016
Creator: Kaiser, Robert Cresswell
Partner: UNT Libraries

Digitally Curious: A Qualitative Case Study of Students’ Demonstrations of Curiosity in a Technology-Rich Learning Environment

Description: Curiosity is an important construct for educators as it is connected with knowledge and higher-order thinking, goal-oriented behavior, motivation, and persistence. It is also negatively correlated with boredom and anxiety. While research documents this strong connection between learning and curiosity, no studies existed exploring curiosity in a technology-rich learning environment. The purpose of this study is to identify and examine whether students demonstrate curiosity in a sixth grade mathematics classroom with technology-integrated learning and if so, how and why. Technology-rich work was designed for students and included in the study to examine students’ demonstrations of curiosity while learning mathematical procedural knowledge, conceptual knowledge and problem solving knowledge. A case study methodology was used with 13 students purposefully selected from a Title I sixth grade class to participate. Data were collected from interviews using a semi-structured interview protocol and triangulated with observations and students’ reflective writings. Interviews were transcribed and coded. A total of 60 codes and four categories were identified. Three themes emerged: 1) digital play; 2) welcome and unwelcome scaffolds; and 3) action is power; power follows ideas. These themes identified ways in which students demonstrated curiosity in the sixth grade mathematics classroom and thus can inform educators.
Date: August 2011
Creator: McLeod, Julie Kiser
Partner: UNT Libraries

Student reflections as artifacts of self-regulatory behaviors for learning: A tale of two courses.

Description: The rapid growth of online and blended learning environments in both higher education and K-12, along with the development of innovative game based, narrative driven, problem-based learning (PBL) systems known as Alternate Reality Games (AltRG), has led to the need to understand student’s abilities to self-regulate their learning behaviors and practices in these novel environments. This study examines student reflections and e-mails related to self-regulatory practices for learning across two different course designs for an Internet-based course in computer applications. Both designs leverage PBL but apply different levels of abstraction related to content and the need to self-regulate. The study looked specifically at how students communicated about learning across these environments, what student communications indicated about student readiness for university online learning and how instructional design and methods of instruction shaped student expressions of learning and self-regulation. The research design follows an ethnographic and case study approach as two designs and four sections are examined. Data was collected from student blog posts, email messages and semi-structured interviews. Atlas.TI was used to code the data using constant comparative analysis. A sequential analysis was applied using an a priori structure for self-regulation and post hoc analysis for emergent codes that resulted in the following categories: distraction, group experience, motivation, emotion, prior experiences, and time. Results indicated qualitative differences between the two designs related to student communications for learning and self-regulation. Findings were reported for both the a priori and post hoc analysis. Additionally, two major findings are reported as emerging themes. These are presented and discussed as The Expectation Gap and Different Designs, Different Outcomes.
Date: December 2011
Creator: Bigenho, Christopher William
Partner: UNT Libraries

Self-regulated Learning Characteristics of Successful Versus Unsuccessful Online Learners in Thailand

Description: The purpose of this study was to identify the existing level of self-regulated learning (SRL) among Thai online learners, to examine the relationship between SRL and academic achievement based on a) course completion and b) course grades, and to investigate differences in SRL as they correlate to demographic factors. A mixed-methods research design with modified MSLQ online surveys and semi-structured interviews was used during the process of data collection. One hundred eighty-eight of the 580 online learners enrolled in the certificate programs of the Thailand Cyber University Project responded to the surveys; 7 of these also participated in the interview process. The findings indicated that Thai online learners reported high levels of SRL characteristics. Independent sample t-test results revealed that successful learners were higher in SRL learning strategies than those who did not succeed the course. Results from multiple regression analyses indicated that critical thinking and time/study environmental management were significant predictors of academic course grade with a small effect size (R2 = .113). Comparison of mean differences revealed that some SRL characteristics were different among demographic subgroups determined by factors including gender, age range, marital status, and Internet use; female reported a significantly higher level of task value than male; younger learners had a significantly higher level of test anxiety than older learners; married learners reported a significantly higher level of self-efficacy and task value than single learners; online learners who had more Internet experience reported a significantly higher level of self-efficacy, metacognitive self-regulation, and time/study environmental management than those who had less Internet experience. In addition, the qualitative findings confirmed that participants reported the use of learning strategies in four categories, with a high number of references to metacognitive self-regulation and elaboration, and a low number of references to critical thinking and time/study environmental management. Furthermore, the qualitative ...
Date: May 2013
Creator: Samruayruen, Buncha
Partner: UNT Libraries

Face-to-face Versus Online Gender Roles: the Effect of Psychological Identity on the Characteristics and Circumstances of Online Disinhibition

Description: Human behaviors and social norms are transferred to the Internet in complex and divergent ways. The term online disinhibition has been coined to describe situations when Internet users seem to behave more openly and unrestrained online, often acting in ways they would not dare to act in the face-to-face world. According to Suler, there is a need for future research to "focus on which people, under what circumstances, are more predisposed to the various elements of online disinhibition." With this in mind, this descriptive study sought to determine whether or not people are more true to their authentic psychological identities (i.e., genders) during online interaction or create completely new identities because of the more permissive social norms created by cyberspace. Through video recorded face-to-face discussions, reflective online discussions, open-ended online surveys, and semi-structured interviews, qualitative data was collected for analysis. The results and findings demonstrated that some personality traits are magnified during online interaction, but individuals ultimately stay true to their established gender roles.
Date: August 2013
Creator: Greene, Amy L.
Partner: UNT Libraries

The Current State of Us Higher Education Social Media Policies with Regard to Teaching and Learning: a Document Review Needs Assessment

Description: In the world we live in today, having a social media account such as Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, or Google+ has become deeply ingrained in our society. The old way of networking with who you knew or who knew your family is no longer in play for many people. In the times in which we live, much personal and professional networking is completed via social media. The old way of networking had unwritten rules of engagement which, basically, were to be respectful and not cause any embarrassment within the network. Rules for best practice engagement are still evolving for this new way of using social media for personal and professional networking, which is the premise for the current study which addresses: the gap in U.S. university social media policies, with regard to teaching and learning. In order to gauge the policy interlude, a sample of over 49 U.S. university social media policies were gathered for a comprehensive document analysis. The Google search engine was used to find the policies, next the qualitative software NVivo10 was used to procure and analyze the policies. Additionally, triangulation was performed by three member checking volunteer investigators. The results of the study, disclosed that current policies are intended to train faculty and staff, in the legal and proper manner, in which the universities expect their employees to positively represent the sampled universities.
Date: December 2013
Creator: Reed, Adalheidur Steinunn
Partner: UNT Libraries

Are They Ready? a Multi-case Study of Traditional and Innovative Texas Teacher’s Perceptions of 21St Century Skills in Teaching and Learning

Description: The 21st century is now in the second decade and the need for 21st century skills is discussed at all levels of education as necessary for student success in the future. Federal, state, and districts are addressing this need and have written technology plans to address 21st century skills needed. the purpose of this dissertation is to contribute to the knowledge of 21st century educational technology. the data includes seven recorded interviews from two separate research projects covering two models of education as teachers discuss teaching, learning, and technology. the data studied determines how educational technology perceived in the school environments has been integrated into the classrooms. the initial scripting of video interviews from two research projects began the analysis of data. Particular themes emerged in response to questions established by the two separate research projects focused on classroom, school, and district environmental arrangements that examined; teaching responsibilities and practices; student learning opportunities; and how technology is woven throughout instruction. Further exploration of themes stemmed from analysis conducted with the qualitative software program, NVivo 9. the themes discussed in this paper relate to instructor perceptions of teaching, learning, classroom procedures, and the role technology plays in each. Also noted are the factors beyond the teacher’s responsibility and set rules that include the school environment, district expectations, and supported teaching strategies for the schools. the teachers expressed their view that technology is an important support for learning and that they used technology to accomplish many of the tasks related to supporting teaching and learning. As perceived by the teachers, a major component that surfaced as a result of the analysis was children’s technology use was most drastically influenced by the expectations of the instructional leader to develop and the need to foster 21st century learning strategies such as critical thinking skills, ...
Date: May 2012
Creator: Royal, Joy
Partner: UNT Libraries

Exploring the Impact on Self-regulated Learning: a Comparative Analysis of Learner Experiences Using Problem-based Learning, Game Play, and Computer-based Instruction

Description: The ability to transfer what you know to new and different contexts is a sign of successful learning. While students often graduate from college with the required number of courses many lack the skills necessary to apply appropriate strategies to solve problems in different contexts, to reason, and think critically. More than a decade ago the Boyer Report (1995) pointed to this fact as a sign that Universities were falling short in adequately supporting their undergraduate populations. As a result, it is not uncommon to see educational institutions introducing new courses and programs geared towards helping students learn better. This study explores learner experiences and the impact on self-regulated learning within a distributed learning setting when motivated by problem-based learning, game play, and computer-based instruction. In this study the instructional design of the course introduced undergraduate students to authentic learning experiences in which students engaged in collaborative problem solving and learning activities framed within the narrative of an alternate reality game. Fifteen self-regulated learning constructs were examined. The comparison group engaged with problem solving tasks and computer-based instruction. Additionally, the study used the theory Learning and Teaching as Communicative Action and its four communicative actions as a lens to understand the full range of student interactions and how they constructed knowledge. The research design employed computer-mediated discourse analysis to examine qualitative data. Data was triangulated through constant-comparative coding of student communication in the form of web logs, emails, student assignments, and semi-structured interviews. Review and consensus building was embedded in the process of identifying emerging codes and categories, and used to support emergent inferences before the final themes were identified and mutually agreed upon. Finally, to evaluate the outcome of the instructional design, pre and posttest measures were used among groups using a two-sample t-test. Statistical significance was used to ...
Date: August 2013
Creator: Najmi, Anjum A.
Partner: UNT Libraries

Comparison of Learning Performance Between Students Who Do and Students Who Do Not Use Mobile Technology-based Activities

Description: This study examined if using mobile technology-based activities would increase student performance in biological science courses. The study compared two groups of students in lectures and labs. Each group had about 20 students. The mobile group had mobile technology-based activities and the non-mobile group received conventional instruction. The mobile group used links to the website, or a QR Code to access the activities. The non-mobile group had handouts and worksheets over the same content. The research methodology for this study was mixed method. The study was a quasi-experimental design that used instruction method as the independent variable between two groups. The study used formative and summative assessment to compare the performance of the mobile group and non-mobile group in lecture and lab. The student in the mobile group had statistically significantly higher lab exam scores than students in the non-mobile group. Additionally, Students were surveyed about their performance expectancy and effort expectancy using mobile technology for learning, and they were asked about their self-management of learning. Analysis indicated that both groups had similar performance and effort expectancy using mobile technology for learning, but the two groups differed on self-management of learning responses to the survey. Focus groups from the mobile group and the non-mobile group were interviewed about issues related to benefits and challenges encountered learning with mobile technology-based activities.
Date: August 2013
Creator: Stowe Jr., William A.
Partner: UNT Libraries

Customizable Modality Pathway Learning Design: Exploring Personalized Learning Choices through a Lens of Self-Regulated Learning

Description: Open online courses provide a unique opportunity to examine learner preferences in an environment that removes several pressures associated with traditional learning. This mixed methods study sought to examine the pathways that learners will create for themselves when given the choice between an instructor-directed modality and learner-directed modality. Study participants were first examined based on their levels of self-regulated learning. Follow-up qualitative interviews were conducted to examine the choices that participants made, the impact of the course design on those choices, and what role self-regulation played in the process. The resulting analysis revealed that participants desired an overall learning experience that was tailored to personal learning preferences, but that technical and design limitations can create barriers in the learning experience. The results from this research can help shape future instructional design efforts that wish to increase learner agency and choice in the educational process.
Date: May 2016
Creator: Crosslin, Matthew Blake
Partner: UNT Libraries

Exploring the Relationships Between Faculty Beliefs and Technology Preferences

Description: All too often faculty are asked to implement technology into their teaching without the knowledge necessary to use the technology effectively. Due to the evolution of technology in everyday settings, students have come to expect to be engaged through technological means. This often creates undue stress on faculty members. The purpose of this study is to investigate technology integration by exploring the relationships between a faculty member’s technology preferences and educational beliefs. Through a mixed method, this study attempts to address the question of why faculty use the types of technology they do. More importantly, this study investigates if a faculty member’s educational beliefs have any influence on the technology they choose to use. Thirty-two medical, clinical, and healthcare faculty members participated in the study. They responded to a Teaching Perspectives Inventory (TPI) survey and a Technology Preferences survey with open-ended questions. Data analysis revealed multiple statistically significant findings between different beliefs and different types of technology. The results indicated that personal epistemic beliefs influence the types of technology faculty use. The technology choices faculty make are largely related to tools they are comfortable with and ones they believe effectively fit their teaching materials. The study also found statistically significant differences between age, gender, and reported technology use. It is suggested faculty development programs should consider faculty members’ educational beliefs and personal preferences when supporting faculty with their uses of technologies.
Date: May 2015
Creator: Faulkner, Christopher G.
Partner: UNT Libraries

Exploring the Effectiveness of Curriculum Provided Through Transmedia Books for Increasing Students’ Knowledge and Interest in Science

Description: Transmedia books are new and emerging technologies which are beginning to be used in current classrooms. Transmedia books are a traditional printed book that uses multiple media though the use of Quick Response (QR) codes and augmented reality (AR) triggers to access web-based technology. Using the transmedia book Skills That Engage Me students in kindergarten through second grade engage in curriculum designed to introduce science skills and careers. Using the modified Draw-a-Scientist Test (mDAST), observations and interviews, researchers analyzed pre and post data to describe changes students have about science and scientists. Future study may include the development and validation of a new instrument, Draw a Science Student, and examining the mDAST checklist with the intention of updating the parameters of what is considered positive and negative in relationship with work a scientist conducts.
Date: December 2015
Creator: Ponners, Pamela Jones
Partner: UNT Libraries

The Global Village Playground: A qualitative case study of designing an ARG as a capstone learning experience.

Description: The Global Village Playground (GVP) was a capstone learning experience designed to address institutional assessment needs while providing an integrated, contextualized, and authentic learning experience for students. In the GVP, students work on simulated and real-world problems as a design team tasked with developing an alternate reality game that makes an impact on the United Nations Millennium Development Goals. The purpose of this study was to evaluate the effectiveness of the design of the GVP as a capstone experience. The research design follows a qualitative case study approach to gather and analyze data collected from the instructors and students participating in the pilot implementation of the GVP. Results of the study show predominantly favorable reactions to various aspects of the course and its design. Students reported to have learned the most through interactions with peers and through applying and integrating knowledge in developing the alternate reality game that was the central problem scenario for the course. What students demonstrated to have learned included knowledge construction, social responsibility, open-mindedness, big picture thinking, and an understanding of their relationship to the larger society and world in which they live. Challenges that resulted from the design included the amount of necessary to build consensus and then develop an overarching game concept, the tension between guided and directed instruction, and the need to foster greater interdependence among students while encouraging them to become more self-directed.
Date: May 2009
Creator: Dondlinger, Mary Jo
Partner: UNT Libraries

User-Centered Evaluation of the Quality of Blogs

Description: Blogs serve multiple purposes, resulting in several types of blogs that vary greatly in terms of quality and content. It is important to evaluate the quality of blogs, which requires appropriate evaluation criteria. Unfortunately, there are minimal studies on framework and the specific criteria and indicators for evaluating the quality of blogs. Moreover, quality is related to user perception, and should therefore be evaluated by the receivers. This dissertation examines the criteria and indicators that blog users consider important for evaluating the quality of blogs, and develops a user-centered framework for evaluating quality by conducting user surveys and post-survey email interviews. The personal characteristics that affect the users’ choices of criteria to evaluate the quality of blogs are examined as well. The study’s findings include 1) the criteria that users consider important when evaluating the quality of blogs are content quality, usability, authority, and blog credibility; 2) the indicators that blog users consider most important for evaluating the quality of blogs are understandability, accuracy, believability, currency, ease of use, and navigation; and 3) gender, education level, age, profession, purpose of use, and specific interests affect the user’s choices of criteria for evaluating the quality of blogs. Future research may involve exploring and applying the framework developed in this study to build automatic quality blog identification system for the purpose of assisting web users and information specialists to identify quality blogs.
Date: August 2011
Creator: Chuenchom, Sutthinan
Partner: UNT Libraries

Design of Informal Online Learning Communities in Education

Description: The U.S. Department of Education, Office of Ed Tech Future Ready program has encouraged the use of open informal learning communities as professional learning opportunities for educators. This study categorizes 46 state Twitter chats by their moderation techniques and design. A purposive sample of Twitter chat designers participated in this phenomenological exploration that demonstrates how the designs of these informal learning spaces are aligned with the designers' pedagogical philosophies. Recommendations for supporting, growing, and sustaining similar learning communities are included.
Date: August 2016
Creator: Kilgore, Whitney Kay
Partner: UNT Libraries

Effects of Problem-based Learning on a Fifth Grade Language Arts Classroom

Description: The main purpose of this qualitative research was to discover the effects of problem-based learning on a fifth grade language arts classroom. The secondary purpose was to examine how receptive fifth grade students were to a new way of learning. In this descriptive study, a group of nine students created an alternate reality game as part of a problem-based learning module. The instructional design of the study included three weeks for students to design and construct their games and one week to play, receive feedback and revise based on feedback. Through reflective blogs, semi-structured interviews, video recordings, and observations, data was collected to analyze. Over a period of five months, the data was coded and arranged into categories. The categories merged into themes. The results and findings revealed the impact collaborative groups have on design and enjoyment. Self-regulation skills were found to be lacking in most of the students, intrinsic motivation increased for some students while others developed positive outcomes beyond the scope of this study.
Date: May 2013
Creator: Blackwell, Deborah
Partner: UNT Libraries

Teacher Perceptions of the Flipped Classroom: Using Video Lectures Online to Replace Traditional In-class Lectures

Description: Advancements in media technologies have resulted in increased student usage causing teachers to struggle to be able to engage and hold student’s interest in a typical classroom. As students’ needs change, the field of education changes. One strategy that is gaining in popularity among teachers is the implementation of the “flipped classroom” also known as the “inverted classroom” or “reverse instruction” - a method incorporates technology to “flip” or “reverse” what is typically done in class with what is typically done as homework. Through teacher interviews of eight core teachers, this study attempts to discover teacher perceptions of the use of this method. Results of the study reveal that perceptions of the method are more positive among teachers who typically use lecture as a primary mode of information dissemination.
Date: August 2012
Creator: Snowden, Kelly E.
Partner: UNT Libraries

Teacher Perception of Project-Based Learning in a Technology-infused Secondary School Culture: a Critical Ciné-ethnographic Study

Description: Project-based learning has long been used in the educational realm as it emphasis a student-centered strategy which promotes meaning, enriched learning that enhances inquiry and problem-solving skills in a rich, authentic environment. The relevance and authentic design of projects may further be enhanced by the use of technology in the classroom. Technology is rapidly changing the face of American education in ways that were barely thinkable as little as five years before and provides the possibility for student to collaborate and complete complex project-based tasks with further level of authenticity which connects to the students preferred method of learning and productivity outside the classroom. At New Tech high school in Coppell, Texas, the entire curriculum is based around this project-based learning in a technology-infused classroom. This qualitative, case-based study is designed to explore and examine the teachers' perceptions of the use of project-based learning, technology in this non-traditional environment. The study also investigates the teacher perceptions of students' response to project-based learning and the technology available to them in their project-based tasks. Finally the study discusses the finding and their possible implications for traditional educational environments.
Date: December 2012
Creator: Gratch, Jonathan
Partner: UNT Libraries

Students' Attitudes Towards Rapport-building Traits and Practices in Online Learning Environments

Description: This research was a triangulated study of student attitudes towards instructors' rapport-building traits and their preferences amongst instructors' rapport-building practices in online learning environments. Participants were undergraduate and graduate students enrolled in courses within an educational technology program at a central Texas university. The study employed a mixed-methods approach involving the Likert-item assessment of learners' attitudes, the identification and prioritization of learner preferences through pairwise comparisons, and semi-structured interviews that provided richer, more detailed information. Findings indicated a strong preference for instructor-based traits and practices over pedagogically-based ones. These traits and practices loaded into the components of social presence, enjoyable interaction, and personal connection.
Date: December 2012
Creator: Wright, Robert Demmon
Partner: UNT Libraries

The Implementation of a Confidence-based Assessment Tool Within an Aviation Training Program

Description: Traditional use of the multiple-choice question rewards a student for guessing. This technique encourages rote memorization of questions to pass a lengthy exam, and does not promote comprehensive understanding or subject correlation. This begs the question; do we really want question memorizers to operate the machinery of our industrialized society? In an effort to identify guessing on answers during an exam within a safety-critical aviation pilot training course, a qualitative research study was undertaken that introduced a confidence-based element to the end-of-ground-school exam followed by flight simulator sessions. The research goals were twofold, to clearly identify correct guesses and also provide an evidence-based snapshot of aircraft systems knowledge to be used as a formative study aid for the remainder of the course. Pilot and instructor interviews were conducted to gather perceptions and opinions about the effectiveness of the confidence-based assessment tool. The finding of overall positive interview comments confirmed that the pilots and flight instructors successfully used the confidence-based assessments as intended to identify weak knowledge areas and as aids, or plans, for their remaining study time. The study found that if properly trained and administered—especially through a computer-based medium—a robust confidence-based assessment tool would be minimally-burdensome while offering worthwhile benefits.
Date: August 2015
Creator: Novacek, Paul F.
Partner: UNT Libraries