Facilitating inquiry-based learning from afar: Educational research in the Caribbean Dr Sabine Little Centre for Inquiry-b...
Overview <ul><li>Background to the study </li></ul><ul><li>Inquiry-based Learning  </li></ul><ul><li>Gradual IBL online </...
Background to the study <ul><li>Caribbean Programme at Sheffield University started (student-led) in 1989 </li></ul><ul><l...
Inquiry-based Learning (IBL) on the  Caribbean Programme <ul><li>facilitates collaborative inquiry by students into their ...
Design of ‘gradual’ IBL online 10 th -15 th  January Teaching and ICT / IL workshop 13 th -20 th  February WebCT Discussio...
Facilitator Observations <ul><li>Link to assessment vital to encourage engagement with collaborative IBL </li></ul><ul><li...
Student Feedback (1) <ul><li>The approach employed in this module has definitely enhanced my skills as a researcher and ha...
Student Feedback (2) <ul><li>This group ‘Collaborative’ research assignment has been very rewarding for me as part of my g...
Questions?
References & Contact Details <ul><li>Oja, S.N. & Smulyan, L. (Eds.) (1989)  Collaborative action research: A developmental...
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Sabine Little, Facilitating inquiry-based learning from afar

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A presentation - Facilitating inquiry-based learning from afar: Educational research in the Caribbean - given by Dr Sabine Little at the following conference: ALT-C conference, Edinburgh, September 2006

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Sabine Little, Facilitating inquiry-based learning from afar

  1. 1. Facilitating inquiry-based learning from afar: Educational research in the Caribbean Dr Sabine Little Centre for Inquiry-based Learning in the Arts and Social Sciences University of Sheffield, UK ALT-C 2006, Edinburgh 6 th September 2006
  2. 2. Overview <ul><li>Background to the study </li></ul><ul><li>Inquiry-based Learning </li></ul><ul><li>Gradual IBL online </li></ul><ul><li>Facilitator Observations </li></ul><ul><li>Student Feedback </li></ul><ul><li>Questions </li></ul>
  3. 3. Background to the study <ul><li>Caribbean Programme at Sheffield University started (student-led) in 1989 </li></ul><ul><li>Currently over 200 students in Trinidad & Tobago and St. Lucia (Cert., MEd, EdD & PhD) </li></ul><ul><li>Two one-week study schools per year, supported by phone/email contact </li></ul><ul><li>Need to integrate online learning </li></ul><ul><ul><li>To expand student-tutor contact </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>To allow for better training for local tutors </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>To build community of practice among dispersed (island) community </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>To facilitate student-led inquiry-based learning </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>… in a context-sensitive way!! </li></ul></ul>
  4. 4. Inquiry-based Learning (IBL) on the Caribbean Programme <ul><li>facilitates collaborative inquiry by students into their own practice and their context; </li></ul><ul><li>challenges students to question the Status Quo and the role of educational research in the Caribbean; </li></ul><ul><li>supports students in identifying a shared language and joint enterprise (Community of Practice (Wenger, 1998)) for their environment; </li></ul><ul><li>provides students with the necessary information literacy (IL) skills to find and use resources necessary to achieve the above; </li></ul><ul><li>uses networked learning to create the links between groups, individuals and resources to encourage IBL, recognising social identity (Rourke et al, 1999). </li></ul>
  5. 5. Design of ‘gradual’ IBL online 10 th -15 th January Teaching and ICT / IL workshop 13 th -20 th February WebCT Discussion 2 (Community of Practice) 6 th -12 th March WebCT Discussion 3 (Methodology) 24 th March – May WebCT Discussion 4 (Evaluation) 23 rd -29 th January WebCT Discussion 1 (Positionality & Validity) IL Step 1 (Article given) IL Step 2 (Reading List) IL Step 3 (Search words suggested) IL Step 4 (Free research) Facilitated Group Discussions 26 th May 2006 Assignment Submission
  6. 6. Facilitator Observations <ul><li>Link to assessment vital to encourage engagement with collaborative IBL </li></ul><ul><li>Initial ‘hand-holding’ in ICT workshop and stepped approach to Information Literacy led to much better grounded arguments </li></ul><ul><li>Using full group discussions to discuss more generic concepts raised confidence and self-esteem </li></ul><ul><li>IBL approach turned assignment exercise into tool for empowerment </li></ul>
  7. 7. Student Feedback (1) <ul><li>The approach employed in this module has definitely enhanced my skills as a researcher and has afforded me the leverage to carry out research in an organised fashion. Having been engaged in a research assignment has boosted my confidence and self worth as I endeavour to continue finding answers to issues and problems plaguing the education system. Oja and Smulyan (1989, p.14) indicates [sic] that ‘teachers are more likely to change their behaviours and attitudes if they have been involved in the research that demonstrates not only the need for such change but that it can be done.’ </li></ul>
  8. 8. Student Feedback (2) <ul><li>This group ‘Collaborative’ research assignment has been very rewarding for me as part of my group. Four persons with varied backgrounds, life experiences, professional experiences, positions and with varied philosophy of life came (were placed) together to pursue a common goal. For me, I was working with those persons for the first time. Initially there was trepidation as the grounds were tested, impressions created and working relationships established. Very important was the mutual acceptance and respect established from the beginning. Now our group has blossomed into a closely knit learning entity. We have started the makings of a ‘community of practice’ and we have all expressed the desire for this to continue long after this module and the course is completed. </li></ul>
  9. 9. Questions?
  10. 10. References & Contact Details <ul><li>Oja, S.N. & Smulyan, L. (Eds.) (1989) Collaborative action research: A developmental approach . NY: Falmer Press </li></ul><ul><li>Rourke, L.; Anderson, T.; Garrison, D. R. and Archer, W. (1999) “Assessing social presence in asynchronous text-based computer conferencing”, Canadian Journal of Distance Education , Vol 14, No. 2, pp 50-71 </li></ul><ul><li>Wenger, E. (1998) Communities of Practice: Learning, Meaning and Identity , Cambridge University Press, Cambridge. </li></ul><ul><li>Picture of Sheffield shown under Creative Commons Licence: http://www.flickr.com/photos/neurotic_camel/4954116/ </li></ul><ul><li>Dr Sabine Little, CILASS, University of Sheffield </li></ul><ul><li>Email: [email_address] </li></ul>

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