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  • MITE/MILM 6025 Methods of Research and Inquiry Research Plan Introduction Doris Lin 25 July 2007
  • Title and Research Questions
    • Virtual collaborative learning: The paradigm shift of learning programming in HK tertiary education
    • Research Questions:
      • how to emerging pedagogy of synchronous and asynchronous services?
      • what is the roles and interaction among teachers, students and synchronous and asynchronous services?
      • students how to use collaborative learning regarding as the constructivist learning?
  • Who are the study participants, How are they selected?
    • Participants:
    • Eight of students in the sample took the general interest survey imbedded with the four target questions regarding attitude and general interest in programming.
    • The core module is “Object-oriented design and programming”.
    • Research method :
      • pairs to use various communication technologies (i.e. VNC, instant messaging and VOIP) and with F2F lessons as learning environment.
    • Sample cases:
    • 8 students from different disciplines.
    • Duration:
    • One Semester.
  • Why is this important topic to study?
    • Collaborative learning is regarded as the constructivist paradigm of learning and teaching where students are encouraged to actively construct their own knowledge structures through sharing and interacting (Wu et al., 2004: 2) and the educational use of computer technology to facilitate group learning (Ashman and Gillies, 2003:80).
    • The dialogue between the students and between the students and their instructors is an elementary tool in constructivist learning environments , and constructivist proponents believe that group work is an ideal method to “share alternative viewpoints and challenge as well as help develop alternative points of views ” (Duffy and Cunningham, 1996:187).
      • Also, Computer-mediated Communication (CMC) is a platform which people interact, as a teacher , we should particularly consider how to design tasks and provide feedbacks using the CMC, setting tasks to create self-regulated learner is important, as self-regulated learners set their own learning goals for learning tasks , generate internal feedback to self-evaluate their performance and interpret external feedback from teachers and other students . (Nicol & Macfarlane-Dick, 2006)
    • The virtual collaborative environment that supports knowledge construction; develops "individual conceptual change through group interaction;" and allows " time and space to reflect " and interact could be theoretically supported through CMC . (McNaught and Kennedy, 2005) describes effective uses of CMC to effectuate student learning outcomes .
  • Why is this important topic to study?
    • CMC tools can be used for exchange ideas, discussion and knowledge building.
      • Students can be motivated in learning according to Robert Slavin at Johns Hopkins University, has conducted extensive research on collaborative learning, and the results document a positive effect on both motivation and social skills.
      • Furthermore, students actively construct their programming knowledge through exchanging ideas and discussions and extend the time for study after school .
    • Students play a much more active role in their learning ; and collaboration between teacher-student and peer student-student are essential to succeed. (RM Palloff and K Pratt, 1999) so
      • The instructor/facilitator must re-conceptualize his or her role as a teacher . The instructor must create a set of situations and reward structures that encourage students to look upon their interactions with their peers as valuable transformed . (SR Hiltz, M Turoff - Communications of the ACM, 2002)
    • The goals of this study were to give guidance to instructors and to tool designers on how future tools can be improved to support collaborative learning in learning programming.
  • How will data be collected and analyzed?
    • Data Collection
    • Two hours lessons were conducted.
      • Lessons were video taped as a whole.
      • Supplemented with the researchers’ field notes.
    • At end of lessons, teacher will interview with eight students.
      • Fixed and open-ended questions.
    • Direct observation and documentation.
    • Data Analysis
    • Transcribed the verbal interaction of pairs.
    • Students’ interview summarized.
    • Data analysis tool - HyperRESEARCH