Patrícia FidalgoSupervisor: Professor João Correia de Freitas Co-supervisor: Professor Terry Anderson
Presentation’s Structure How it all began: researcher’s and topicSection 1 backgroundSection 2 Materials and MethodsSection 3 FindingsSection 4 Conclusions & ImplicationsSection 5 Where to go from here
Researcher’s background– College teacher for 15 years– Have been using Moodle for 6 years and is a Moodle trainer– Teaches online courses– Was in the first group of teachers that were responsible for the implementation of online educational project at the institution where she works– Done previous research and has published articles on the use of Moodle by teachers and by students from the standpoint of Social Network Analysis
Finding a needle in a haystackAmbition: to have Acceptance or not have? Being brave Knowing when to stop The best part of Shouting for the Ph.D. help
Algebra• What do I want to research? (The happiness factor)• Lms’s… (the convenience factor)• Researcher background (the experience factor)• Help (the luck factor)• Two pages a day (the discipline factor)• Sweat and tears (the work factor)
Topic background• Technological developments – Development of tools for group interaction Distance e-learning – Online social networks• Academic Analytics – Social Network Analysis
“I (don’t) like Distance E-learning”
Here to stay• Why do teachers and students offer so much resistance? – ‘Multifactorial’ analysis• The online interaction ‘problem’ – The educational context – A work in progress• What to do with all the data from the LMS’s?
Academic analyticsPredictiveModelling Log files ofIntervention relational datathroughtimely Academic Analyticsinformation Social Method for harvesting and Network analysing large volumes ofInstitutional Analysis institutional data for informingimprovement decision making and reportingand processesaccountability
Research questions and main objectives• Q1 - What types of social learning networks are formed in LMS Moodle, in a Portuguese Higher education institution, as a mediated, on-line teaching and learning environment?• Q2 - What are the patterns of relationships established between users of the LMS, and which features, activities influence the formation of these patterns in the context of distance education at an institution of higher education in Portugal?• Q3 - How can the LMS, as a support environment for social learning networks, contribute to the organizational design and strategy of an institution of higher education in supporting the process of communication, sharing, knowledge building and management at distance?
Materials and Methods• Case Study – Mixed method case study research – Different sources and methods of data collection and analysis – Qualitative and quantitative techniques for collecting, processing and analysing data• Qualitative Structural Analysis – Social Network Analysis
Research Dimensions Data Collection Questionnaires Statistical Analysis Participants’ Perceptions
Context and participants Private Institution of HigherSchool EducationSchool year 2010/2011LMS MoodleNumber of courses 4 (from the ‘institutional matrix’)Number of Students enrolled in the 683coursesNumber of students that have 371 (54,3%)participated in this studyTeachers 3 Not responsible for the coursesResearcher analysed 31 (C1= 10; C2 = 2; C3 = 14; and C4 =Number of forums analysed 5)
Findings Relational Aspects of the NetworksWhat types of social learning networks Formal networks with very feware formed in LMS Moodle, in a interaction among the participants,Portuguese Higher education institution, especially between the students.as a mediated, on-line teaching andlearning environment?
Findings Relational Aspects of the NetworksWhat are the patterns of relationships The most prominent pattern is the oneestablished between users of the LMS, centred in the teacher (star pattern). Theand what features, activities influence the students interact mostly with theformation of these patterns in the context instructor although in some sub regionsof distance education at an institution of of networks few examples of otherhigher education in Portugal? patterns can also be found. Assessment activities were mainly responsible for the formation of the patterns found. We also found that more informal themes of discussion can trigger higher participation and more interaction.
Findings Teaching and Learning ProcessesHow can the LMS, as a support Moodle can be tailored to support theenvironment for social learning networks, needs of an educational institutioncontribute to the organizational design regarding online and distanceand strategy of an institution of higher communication, knowledge building andeducation in supporting the process of sharing.communication, sharing, knowledge Moodle enables the connection to otherbuilding and management at distance? communication systems that schools may have allowing a more effective management of those systems.
Conclusions & Implications Academic Analytics Use & Perceptions ICT Teaching & Distance E-Learning Learning Academic Analytics Research Design-Based Research FrameworkOnline Interaction for Relational Aspects
The “Thesis” Importance of incorporating academic analytics in the educational process as a way to provide information to everydaypractitioners in order to promote a better learning experience
And now…? Social Network AnalysisConnections ActorsSize: 52Density: 0,08Diameter: 7 Geodesic distanceReciprocity
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