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Student tool choice in enquiry-based learning

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A presentation given at the international Pedagogic Research into Higher Education (PRHE) conference on 25th Oct 2010. ...

A presentation given at the international Pedagogic Research into Higher Education (PRHE) conference on 25th Oct 2010.

Authors: Peter Dangerfield, Tünde Varga-Atkins, Ian Ellis, Louis Vitone

Title: Student tool choice in enquiry-based learning: an activity theory analysis of a pilot project using an online social bookmarking tool (Diigo)

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  • 30 minutesQuestion to audience: how many uses social bookmarking sites? Which ones?How many know what they are and how they work?
  • Quick round question:How many of you know about it?How many of you use it?
  • Definition - Social bookmarking is a method for Internet users to share, organize, search, and manage bookmarks of web resources. Unlike file sharing, the resources themselves aren't shared, merely bookmarks that reference them. (Wikipedia April 22)Features:Saving weblinks – own accounts – accessible anywhereSharing weblinks bw groups and publicSearch other people’s weblinks (the ‘social’ bookmarking) – benefit from other people’s findings if interested in same topic via social tagging (self-generated tags)Toolbar.
  • Definition - Social bookmarking is a method for Internet users to share, organize, search, and manage bookmarks of web resources. Unlike file sharing, the resources themselves aren't shared, merely bookmarks that reference them. (Wikipedia April 22)Features:Saving weblinks – own accounts – accessible anywhereSharing weblinks bw groups and publicSearch other people’s weblinks (the ‘social’ bookmarking) – benefit from other people’s findings if interested in same topic via social tagging (self-generated tags)Toolbar.
  • Diverse, LLiDA + other refse.g. Stud33ents adept at using technologies for social lifeBut less so for their studies, educationIn today’s fast developing information society and medical discipline, it is pivotal for medical trainees to develop as reflective professionals who are able to continuously learn, update and evaluate their own skills and knowledge. Professionals need to be “adept at locating and synthesising information from a variety of sources” (McGee&Bee 2008). Although most of today’s students are ICT-literate, they may not possess adequate information skills to support their ability to critically evaluate internet-based resources in terms of their accuracy, authority and currency (Shanahan 2008). Students are also likely to use web2.0 technologies (e.g. blogs, wikis, social networking sites) in their social and personal lives (JISC/Ipsos MORI 2008), but not necessarily for their studies (Trinder et al 2008; Boulous et al 2006). Yet these technologies are becoming increasingly useful to busy medical professionals in their day-to-day work through the introduction of mobile Internet devices.
  • Landscape in totalOnline tool particular interestBy tools we mean people, techniques and resourcesConvert this into full activity diagram! (rules, div of labour, community)
  • What is the value of social bookmarking tool in the context of students’ research and reflection process, especially in context of PPD? (How social bookmarking may enhance reflective research process?)During PBL with whom nad how they interact?How do these interactions contribute to their learning?How do students engage with the tool?What features of the tool do they use and value?
  • [this slide is just to show – not to talk over]Small scale study, pilot with 2 PBL groups.Focus groups & interviews.Piloted a technique: walkthrough interview.Online engagement and statistics- asked to be invited to social bookmarking groups.Email feedback requested for clarification.Used activity theory to help interpret and organise findings.
  • Context: information skills & reflectionTemporal: changing patterns from first to third yearConflict: wanting direction vs discovery, independenceBUT this tension is the source of learning.Issue of ‘depth’ in PBL learning objectivesDEPTH – how do we know how much to cover / learn
  • Purpose of using resources:Source learning objectives (main source: BOOKs)Lectures, HARC booklets guide on what/how much should be coveredtechniques: working out from others’ learning objectives.Some elements of personal preference in different books is showing.
  • Friends in same year, PBL group, senior peers, ex-school mates in other unis, staff in HARCFamily as resource, faculty, lecturersThe purpose of first years involving people – they are the main source of info to guide their PBL especially to see what DEPTH to go into the different learning objectives.Senior peers seem to be quite important. As are the rest such as PBL group, facilitators.Interesting their comparisons with exfriends from school at non-PBL unis.These discussions, comparisons give them guidance and confidence to progress.One important person left off the drawing: their own self!!
  • In first year note taking is predominant.Some of these techniques are done individually, some in groups!
  • Useful in theory – but not used in practice:QuantityUtility vs effort‘social’ element not utilised, recognisedWe can look at the white/green ones- and analyse what makes them take up, continue or discontinue with tool – what makes them value and choose it?Few took lead to set up groups – these few – ‘agile learners’ (Beetham et al 2009)Some didn’t log onFew saved resources + commented on
  • Definition - Social bookmarking is a method for Internet users to share, organize, search, and manage bookmarks of web resources. Unlike file sharing, the resources themselves aren't shared, merely bookmarks that reference them. (Wikipedia April 22)Features:Saving weblinks – own accounts – accessible anywhereSharing weblinks bw groups and publicSearch other people’s weblinks (the ‘social’ bookmarking) – benefit from other people’s findings if interested in same topic via social tagging (self-generated tags)Toolbar.
  • Report on how students interacted with DiigoContradicts diffusion theory (early adopters, early-late majority, laggards) Davis?
  • So what really happened?Physical sharing: via f2f, FaceBook, email, textFirst year- main source of information = books , not so much internet linksRole of sharing: to help guide students about DEPTH rather than share a physical resource.
  • Add other referencesUseful in theory – but not used in practice:QuantityUtility vs effort‘social’ element not utilised, recognisedMay be a good tool in the later years when there are more internet searchesMay be taken up by an ‘agile individuals’ (Beetham et al) rather than whole groups.Results of study: first satisfaction w technology, then perceived usefulness, attitude, concentration, and perceived behavioural control (necessary skills using techn) (Lee Ming-Chi 2010)[so in our study either students didn’t perceive this method to be useful – not intended to try it out or those trying it out were not satisfied with it?]Satisfaction (Lee ming-Chi 2010 – most important)(Chiu & Wang 2008)Perceived Usefulness or utility (Lee ming-Chi 2010 , Chiu & Wang 2008)AttitudeEase of use or effort expectancy (Lee ming-Chi 2010 Chiu & Wang 2008)Social influence (contradicting Chiu and Wang 2008 and confirming Lee Ming-Chi 2010)Lee also mentions the influence of the opinions of other people; if they find that other people around them adopted techn, they are more likely to do it too [CETL: peers, senior peers, facilitator, faculty etc.; our group was pilot so did not have this influence group ] (Lee Ming-Chi 2010Lee also mentions the influence of the opinions of other people; if they find that other people around them adopted techn, they are more likely to do it too [CETL: peers, senior peers, facilitator, faculty etc.; our group was pilot so did not have this influence group ] (Lee Ming-Chi 2010) Chiu and Wang (2008) Results: performance expectancy (usefulness) and utility – same effect on continuanceChiu and Wang (2008) Performance expectancy, effort expectancy, positive task value – likely to help users continue, intrinsic value (enjoyment) also significant Chiu and Wang (2008) Social influence were not significant predictor of continuance [contrary to our CETL findings I think]
  • Diffusion theory not relevant: – not true (early adopters, early majority, late majority, ‘laggards’)How they value social bookmarking: utility (not the social aspect – they do this in facebook & not the bookmarking aspect, they take hand-written notes or quick savelinksWhat they value: discussions as it helps them with the depth
  • Importance of social influence – particularly strong here – see PEOPLE slide too!
  • Learners often lack skills in using techn to support learningLearners display enourmous differ-s in past educ exp-s , needs and motivations; these have profound influence over their preferred strategies for using technologies. Learners are conservative in their attitude to adoption of new technoliges. Highly infl-d by tutors and courses and expect the use of digital technologies in course contexts to have an educational rationale. Some agile learners – true in our case!

Student tool choice in enquiry-based learning Student tool choice in enquiry-based learning Presentation Transcript

  • Student tool choice in enquiry-based learning: an activity theory analysis of a pilot project using an online social bookmarking tool Mon25th October 2010, Session 2e, 2-3.30pmPRHE 2010Peter DangerfieldTünde Varga-AtkinsIan EllisLouis Vitone
    Acknowledgements to CEDP (CETL in Developing Professionalism)
  • Social bookmarking
    ?
  • Socialbookmarking
    • Portable ‘favourites’
    • Toolbar – saving weblinks quickly
    Browse others’ searches
    Snowballing
    Common interests
  • Socialbookmarking
  • Diigo – tag cloud
  • Session outline
    Context: the reflective professional
    EBL (PBL) & social bookmarking
    Aims: what influences student tool choice?
    Methods
    Findings
    Discussion
  • EBL - PBL
    Scenario
    1. Clarify terms from scenario
    2. Define problem
    3. Identify prior knowledge
    Wood, D (2003)
    4. Review steps 2 and 3
    5. Form learning objectives
    6. Individual study
    7. Group sharing of private study
  • PBL group – which step?
  • Analysis of problem: mind map
  • Peristalsis
    Name teeth
    Stomach juices etc
    Acid reflex
    Bad teeth
    Production of saliva
    Autonomy
    GIT tract
    Blames beer curry
    Primary secondary tertiary
    Smokes and overweight (bad life style)
    History NHS 1948
    Triggers to consultation
    Sick role
    Standard deviation Normal distribution
    Mr Bridge
    56 Married
    Roles staff (primary care team)
    Reluctant to change
    Endoscopy Biopsy Liver Gallbladder
    Vomiting
    Wife has ulcer
    Normal results
    Life style advice
    Stats for men women going to doctor
    Clinical iceberg
    OTC
    Reluctant to go to doctor
    Inflammatory response
    OTC
    Chronic
    Self medication
    Symptoms associated with indigestion
  • Context
    Skills needed for developing reflective professional:
    • Independent learning skills;
    • Need to be adept at information skills (search, retrieve, store, evaluate and synthesise information) (McGee and Bee 2008);
    Student characteristics:
    • Diverse ICT skills;
    • Most students use web2 for social life but not realise potential for education (JISC/Ipsos Mori 2008, Trinder et al 2008, Boulous et al 2006);
  • Rationale: activity framework
    People
    Techniques
    Tools
    Resources
    Information skills
    Reflective professional
    Research PBL objectives
    Student
    Lifelong learning
  • Aims: can students’ PBL learning be enhanced?
    What tools (people, techniques, resources) do students use to research their PBL?
    Introduce an online social bookmarking tool.
    • How do students engage with the social bookmarking tool?
    • How do they value such a tool for their PBL enquiry?
  • Methods
    Small scale study, pilot with first-year medics.
    Focus groups & interviews.
    • Piloted ‘walkthrough interview’.
    Online engagement and statistics.
    Email feedback.
    Used activity theory to help interpret and organise findings.
  • Findings
    What tools (people, techniques, resources) do students use to research their PBL?
    How do students engage with the social bookmarking tool?
    How do they value such a tool for their PBL enquiry?
  • What tools: individual resources
    First years
    books
    lectures
    internet
    Anatomy hands-on
    library search
    Anatomy booklets
    VLE resources
  • What tools : talking to people
    First years
    Lecturers
    Anatomy staff
    Senior peers
    Family, relatives
    Friends,ex-school friends
    PBL facilitator
    PBL group
  • What tools: learning techniques?
    mnemonics
    quizzes
    reflecting
    diagrams
    Note-taking
    drawings
    copying
    mind maps
    cue-cards
  • Social bookmarking tool: Diigo
    How students used Diigo:
    • As bookmarking weblinks for themselves;
    • As sharing tool;
    “Agile learners”
    Initially interested
    fail to see benefit of tool?
    [IT skill issues?/avoiders?]
  • Socialbookmarking
  • Diigo – a group’s bookmarks
  • Use / no use
    Ineffective and cumbersome
    I felt I had to get used to so many things
    Useful at first
    Very complicated at start; easy once sorted but not enough comments were made
    We had our own system of sharing information
    Difficult at first but got easier with use
  • Value of social bookmarking tool
    Continuance theory (e.g. Chiu and Wang 2008, Lee 2010)
    • What factors influence students’ continuing to use technology?
    • And what factors influence discontinuance ...?
    Viewing technologies as ‘tools’ - metaphor is useful: it places control in students’ hands (Stevenson 2007)
  • Sharing weblinks: Diigo vs others
    “We had our own way of sharing information“
    In practice weblinks were:
    • Shared via face to face discussions instead or via email.
    • Share in Facebook©
    • Stored in favourites on PC or in their hand-written PBL notebooks.
  • Tool choice: continuance
    “Useful at first“
    “We had our own way of sharing information“
    Results of study:
    • first satisfaction with technology,
    • then perceived usefulness,
    • attitude,
    • concentration, and
    • perceived behavioural control (necessary skills using technology) (Lee 2010)
  • Tool choice: continuance
    Ineffective and cumbersome
    “I felt I had to get used to so many new things “
    Results of study:
    • first satisfaction with technology,
    • then perceived usefulness,
    • attitude,
    • concentration, and
    • perceived behavioural control (necessary skills using technology) (Lee 2010)
  • Tool choice: continuance
    “Very complicated at start; easy once sorted but not enough comments were made“
    Social influence:
    • Have people around adopted technology?
    • They have an influence on continuance and adoption. (contradicting Chiu and Wang 2008 and confirming Lee 2010).
    • Medical students: see importance of (senior and current) peers.
  • Findings suggest:
    Importance of
    • Utility (and here not much web links to share);
    • Social influence;
    Diverse ICT experiences -> large influence on uptake
    • Majority students show more conservative pattern of adoption/continuance of technologies;
    • But: some agile learners!
    Lack of technology use for learning (vs social);
    • Confirms studies such as Beetham et al 2009
  • Social bookmarking seems to be the least adopted web 2 technology (versus wikis and blogs) – why?
    • Bookmarking about how individuals manage their notes, resources ‘at home’? More difficult to shift?
    Discussion 1
    Battelemedia.com
  • Discussion 2
    Bookmarking has potential to enhance learning – but potential is not valued by students (at least in this stage in which they use books more than the web)
    • More appropriate in later in career?
    • And will this change as technologies converge/advance?
    >
  • Discussion 3
    Students do share e.g. Facebook.
    • Sharing is an informal activity and not just the act of posting/storing a link;
    • Not seen as being a controlled environment.
  • Acknowledgements to CEDP (CETL)
    The Road to the future?
    Conclusions
  • QUESTIONS
    Contact: tva@liv.ac.uk
  • Publications – previous project
    • Developing professionalism through the use of wikis: a study with first-year undergraduate medical students. Medical Teacher 32(10), October. 2010
    • HEA MEDEV subject centre newsletter. Spring 2010. (Issue 21) Using wikis to promote the personal and professional development of undergraduate medical students: a report for the CETL in Developing Professionalism