Perceptions of Effective  Web-based Design for   Secondary SchoolStudents: Initial Findings Michael Barbour (mkb@uga.edu) ...
Centre for Distance Learning and InnovationThe CDLI was founded in December 2000  by the Department of Education, in  resp...
Newfoundland and Labrador• area of the island is 43,359  square miles, while Labrador  covers 112,826 square miles• accord...
The studyThis presentation represents the initialportion of a study on the perceptions of thecharacteristics of effective ...
The studyJohn was one of the initial developers and was perceived as one of the   stronger course developers until accepti...
Why?• there has been much research on web-based  course design  – Collins, 1999; Gallini and Barron, 2001-2002; Stein, 200...
Initial findingsCourse developers should:1.   prior to beginning development of any of the web-based material,     plan ou...
Planning and preparationDevelopers should “not attempt to writeanything, do not attempt to constructanything, until you ha...
KISS, but not the same way all the timeInstead of going… “You will learn,” or   “You should know,” and so on,   they’ll cl...
Useful and personalDevelopers should “try to   develop a good set of notes   [and] a good set of worked   examples.” (John...
Clear directions and expectationsStudents “need to have  clearly defined what has  to be done [over] a  certain period of ...
Text, text and more text“You’re trying very often to  explain things... [that are]  difficult to understand.  The more exp...
Appropriate selection of tools“There should be a lot of  distractions there with  things that… might be  gimmicky.” (Bill)...
Who’s your audience“Appropriateness… [is] an important   thing… because a lot of… people   who develop courses… design…   ...
BibliographyBright, B.P. (1989). Epistemological vandalism: Psychology in the study of adult education. In B.P.      Brigh...
Contact informationMichael K. Barbour Doctoral Student Department of Educational Psychology and  Instructional Technology ...
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SECIDT 2005 - Teacher and Developer Perceptions of Effective Web-Based Design for Secondary School Students

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Barbour, M. K. (2005, March). Teacher and developer perceptions of effective web-based design for secondary school students. Paper presented at the annual Southeastern Conference in Instructional Design and Technology, Mobile, AL.

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SECIDT 2005 - Teacher and Developer Perceptions of Effective Web-Based Design for Secondary School Students

  1. 1. Perceptions of Effective Web-based Design for Secondary SchoolStudents: Initial Findings Michael Barbour (mkb@uga.edu) University of Georgia at Athens
  2. 2. Centre for Distance Learning and InnovationThe CDLI was founded in December 2000 by the Department of Education, in response to the recommendations of the 1999 Sparks-Williams Ministerial Panel on Educational Delivery.The vision of the Centre is to• provide access to educational opportunities for students, teachers and other adult learners in both rural and urban communities in a manner that renders distance transparent;• eliminate geographical and demographic barriers as obstacles to broad, quality educational programs and services; and• develop a culture of e-learning in our schools which is considered to be an integral part of school life for all teachers and students.
  3. 3. Newfoundland and Labrador• area of the island is 43,359 square miles, while Labrador covers 112,826 square miles• according to the 2001 Census population for Newfoundland and Labrador was 512,930 (down from 551,795 in 1996)• 305 schools (down from 343 just three years ago)• 81,458 students (down from 118,273 a decade ago)• average school size 233 pupils (over 40% have less than 200)
  4. 4. The studyThis presentation represents the initialportion of a study on the perceptions of thecharacteristics of effective web-baseddesign for secondary school students withinthe CDLI environment. This initial portionconsiders the perceptions theadministration of the CDLI, coursedevelopers and those who held the role ofboth course developers and electronicteachers.
  5. 5. The studyJohn was one of the initial developers and was perceived as one of the stronger course developers until accepting a new job with the understanding he would not seek to be seconded by the CDLI.Cliff, a retired teacher who spent twenty-nine years in the classroom, is designing his first course.Norman, one of four original developers who went on to be an e-teacher, has also developed of sections of two other courses and is teaching a second web-based course.Bill, began his thirtieth year of teaching this past September, is another of the initial developers that went on to be an e-teacher for the past three years.Sam is a principal of a small, rural school, where he has taught in almost every subject area at every grade level, even though he is trained as a Science teacher.George, an administrator with the CDLI has been involved in distance education for the past decade and a half; first as a distance education coordinator in a rural school, then as an instructor and content developer, and later with a web-based program.
  6. 6. Why?• there has been much research on web-based course design – Collins, 1999; Gallini and Barron, 2001-2002; Stein, 2004• however, this research conducted in online learning has focused upon post-secondary institutions and corporate America – Kolbe and Bunker, 1997; Gunawardena and McIsaac, 2004; Hill, Wiley, Nelson and Han, 2004• the problem with this focus upon an adult population is that there is a difference between how adults learn compared to the way adolescents learn – Knowles, 1970; Moore, 1973; Bright, 1989; Cavanaugh, Gillan, Kromrey, Hess and Blomeyer, 2004
  7. 7. Initial findingsCourse developers should:1. prior to beginning development of any of the web-based material, plan out the course with ideas for the individual lessons and specific items that they would like to include;2. keep the navigation simple and to a minimum, but don’t present the material the same way in every lesson;3. provide a summary of the content from the required readings or the synchronous lesson and include examples that are personalized to the students’ own context;4. ensure students are given clear instructions and model expectations of the style and level that will be required for student work;5. refrain from using too much text and consider the use of visuals to replace or supplement text when applicable;6. only use multimedia that will enhances the content and not simply because it is available; and7. develop their content for the average or below average student.
  8. 8. Planning and preparationDevelopers should “not attempt to writeanything, do not attempt to constructanything, until you have designed yourproject out from end to end, from start tofinish… if you fail to do this, here’s whathappens… if you get in there and get on withit and make a misstep, … undoing thatmistake usually means changes thatpeculate right through the web of work thatyou’ve constructed. So, undoing you’remistakes is horrendously difficult. Secondthing is that when you take the time to layyour project out from start to finish, thechances are you will confer with otherpeople and that means that you will addlayers of… important content… to yourproject that would not otherwise have beenthere if you did not take the time.” (George)
  9. 9. KISS, but not the same way all the timeInstead of going… “You will learn,” or “You should know,” and so on, they’ll click right to the “Lesson”… if I have any activities assigned to them, they’ll simply just go right to the “Activities,” they won’t even bother with the “Lesson” itself. (Norman)Each lesson “has to offer a certain sense of choice to the students preferred style or mode of learning. Some students learn better by reading, some… with their hands, [and] some… by discussing items. Now a well designed lesson would either a) provide a couple of approaches or b) at least in the long scheme of things the lessons taken in aggregate would provide… a varied approach” (George).
  10. 10. Useful and personalDevelopers should “try to develop a good set of notes [and] a good set of worked examples.” (John)He had students “looking a lot at their own lives [and] their own communities” (Bill).“For example, if it’s… a student in Newfoundland and Labrador, you would use organisms that would reside in the province themselves,” which “can provide [the students] with something a little more substantive and relate to where they are” (Norman).
  11. 11. Clear directions and expectationsStudents “need to have clearly defined what has to be done [over] a certain period of time.” (John)“The directions and the expectations [need to be] precise enough so students can work effectively on their own, not providing a roadblock for their time.” (Bill)
  12. 12. Text, text and more text“You’re trying very often to explain things... [that are] difficult to understand. The more explanation you have there the less chance… students are going to read it, but some of the concepts are just too difficult to be… presented very concisely.” (Bill)“By providing students a visual cue with the written information it does provide a connection for them.” (Norman)
  13. 13. Appropriate selection of tools“There should be a lot of distractions there with things that… might be gimmicky.” (Bill)“Trying to be too flashy… really may distract… from the lesson itself and students may miss the message.” (Norman)
  14. 14. Who’s your audience“Appropriateness… [is] an important thing… because a lot of… people who develop courses… design… for… top students… but we’re also going to have some very, very weak students… so even if you’re into doing complicated material… keeping it as simple as possible.” (Bill)“Students are still students and… we shouldn’t assume that they’re all self motivated… it’s much better to shoot… for the average and below average student… making sure that… there’s a structure in place that guarantees they’re doing their… work.” (Cliff)
  15. 15. BibliographyBright, B.P. (1989). Epistemological vandalism: Psychology in the study of adult education. In B.P. Bright (Ed.), Theory and practice in the study of adult education: The epistemological debate (pp. 34-64). London: Routledge.Cavanaugh, C., Gillan, K.J., Kromrey, J., Hess, M., Blomeyer, R. (2004). The effectes of distance education on K-12 student outcomes: A meta-analysis. Naperville, IL: Learning Point Associates. Retrieved on November 24, 2004 from http://www.ncrel.org/tech/distance/k12distance.pdfCollins, B. (1999). Designing for differences: Cultural issues in the design of WWW-based course- support sites. British Journal of Educational Technology, 30(3), 201-215.Gallini, J. & Barron, D. (2001-2002). Participants’ perceptions of web-infused environments: A survey of teaching belies, learning approaches, and communications. Journal of Research on Technology in Education, 34(2), 139-156.Gunawardena, C.N. & McIsaac, M.S. (2004) Distance education. In D.H. Jonassen (Ed.), Handbook of research on educational communications and technology (pp. 355-395). Mahwah, NJ: Lawrence Erlbaum Associates, Publishers.Hill, J.R., Wiley, D., Nelson, L.M. & Han, S. (2004). Exploring research on Internet-based learning: From infrastructure to interactions. In D.H. Jonassen (Ed.), Handbook of research on educational communications and technology (pp. 433-460). Mahwah, NJ: Lawrence Erlbaum Associates, Publishers.Knowles, M.S. (1970). The modern practice of adult education: Andragogy vs. pedagogy. New York, NY: Association Press.Kolbe, M.A. & Bunker, E.L. (1997). Trends in research and practice: An examination of The American Journal of Distance Education 1987 to 1995. American Journal of Distance Education, 11(2), 19- 38.Moore, M.G. (1973). Toward a theory of independent learning and teaching. Journal of Higher Education, 19(12), 661-679.Stein, D. (2004). Course structure: Most important factor in student satisfaction. Distance Education Report, 8(3), F1.
  16. 16. Contact informationMichael K. Barbour Doctoral Student Department of Educational Psychology and Instructional Technology University of Georgia mkb@uga.edu http://www.arches.uga.edu/~mkb

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