The development of a sustainable quality e learning program

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  • AIF project title: The Development of a Sustainable, Quality, e-Learning Program in the Faculty of Health and LA&PS
  • Chair of the elearning Business case was Ron Owston. Members: Jean Adams, Amir Asif, Sarah Cantrell, Avi Cohen, Joseph da Silva, Bob Gagne, Jon Kerr, Ros Woodhouse In an attempt to respond to our student body (see below) and our financial pressures 50% of students commute at least 1.5 hours (return) a day60% of our first-year students work off campus an average of 16 hours per week 45% identify as a visible minority (over 180 different nationalities by ACMAPPS survey)Increase York’s ability to respond to enrollment pressures (sustainable)Provide a better experience for commuter students (flexible, accessible)Better engage studentsImprove student learning (engage)
  • Colouring reflects what the literature reflects on average. Green most advantages, Yellow intermediate advantages, and red fewest advantages to the 4 particular elearning objectives Note red is not necessarily bad it just meets the fewest objectives. It is possible for individual courses to vary from this overview table provided.The business case for elearning in 2010 suggested that although fully online courses could be more cost effective, the way to put York on the map for excellent teaching, increased student engagement and improved student learning was by creating blended courses that would cost more up front but have the potential to transform the learning process.For a student to be successful in courses with online learning activities (otherwise known as elearning) they need to have the following qualities/tools: 1) sets own goals, persistent at reaching them, and do not require extensive external organization or deadlines posed. They are good at working independently and creating deadlines to manage the course requirements; 2) comfortable with written communications and participating in online discussions with people they might not have yet met, 3) and have access to a computer when they need it and are an experienced computer user.
  • Blended: The aim is to engage students by combining the Socratic strengths of face-to-face time with the accessible delivery and flexibility of web-based resources.
  • Attempt to obtain buy in from faculty members, or at the very list enlist champions.We also hoped that through educating the faculty with best practices and an information session we would be able to develop two models of blended learning that we could pilot and evaluate.
  • Shared experiences event: Invites went out to faculty members in Health (approximately200) and LAPS (approximately 650)Invited faculty from Health and LAPS to come and hear about how 3 faculty members (Law, Nursing, Social Work) use the blended approach in their courses. Approximately 20 attended.Asked When designing a blended learning prototype what takes best to the blended formatDefine course learning objectives firstmanage student expectationsprepare to do a lot of up front workhave a presence onlineworks well with courses that require reflective thinking such as applying current theories to real word problemsgroup works allows students to identify with a smaller group of students in large courses. But if they do group work they need to coach the students on group dynamics and incorporate peer evaluation in the process of assessment.Provide incentives to do the online workClass work supplements not substitutes for the online work .To get faculty involved: -provide cash incentives -provide a course on developing blended learning course -develop a website where best practice instances can be provided along various tools and resources. -provide face to face consultants -provide reward and recognition for those who put all the work into redesigning their courses using blended approaches. (e.g., perhaps get them involved in collecting data and publishing it in higher education journals?).
  • One of the main purposes of the full day information session/workshop held August 2011 was to inform course directors at York about what blended learning entails and how successful it has been at other universities. Norman encouraged those present to take the time to write about and subsequently discuss their personal definitions of blended learning, opportunities  afforded by blended learning and challenges they expected to encounter.Below are the specific responses to the mini-workgroups in the afternoon session.
  • 1. What factors would influence you to change your course from your current delivery mode to 30-80% on-line?Top 3:Would it be beneficial for the students?Course design and tech support.Time commitment of instructor. Other points made some of which can come under the top 3 points:a) Course design and tech supportDo ArtsDoTel style of workshop, online course tutorial, training for the technology, better IT instructions.AssistanceIntegrated and simple for instructor and studentsIncentives (money, evidence that learning improves, course release, time)Money to Develop, Increased collaboration (connect faculty with each other doing the same thing,syllabus sharing, showcase best practice, peers and trend research)Manual –what kinds of things do what and why would I use it?Less guilt about skipping a lecture due to a conference b) Would it be beneficial for the student?Student demandSuitability for contentDemographic (adult learner) c) time commitment of instructorEnough TA support to help manage course Other: Class size,Scheduling of classrooms,Better classroom
  • 2. What are the benefits for blended learning for the course directors and for the students?Increase sharing of knowledge amongst course directors and studentsFlexibility (hours and physical space)More opportunities for collaboration with other universities and geographically. Increase sharing of knowledge amongst course directors and studentsMultiple instructors in one coursePromotes collaboration (teacher –student, student-student).Cost factorStudents can answer peer questions.Student adjustment and engagement Flexibility (hours and physical space)Promotes continues learningChanges in teaching philosophyChanges I learning methodsEngagement of students with special needs More opportunities for collaboration with other universities and geographically.Teacher as facilitator (less hierarchical)Fosters connectionsLinks lectures and text to real worldHolistic approachStudents have opportunity to apply what they have learned to new situationsDistance guest lecturersCreation of learning communities Other:Fun way to learn/teachSelf directed learning Active learningShy student feel more comfortableBenefits to the tactile, kinesthetic learnerConfirmation of submission of online work Non-benefit, if contract faculty spends time and money developing the course but then not be asked to teach the course again – Can this be changed?Does blended have to include online? Eg what about labs in KINE or geography?
  • 3. What challenges do you foresee if you try to achieve your learning objectives by moving some content and activities online or continuing as you have in the classroom?Top 3:lack of resourcessize of classlack of connections with other colleagues lack of resourceswhat is moved online is ignorednot enough staffneed trained TA’s who are dedicated and with the time to helptime investmentdesign of learning activities (#, variety, diff learning styles)keeping up with changes (tech, online media content)workload (LTS and ESO, faculty , students)lack of infrastructure (computer, internet, space, bandwidth, finances, software)e-learning designers and applicationslegibility of on-line resourcesTiming –synchronizing lectures, demos, time zones. size of classcultural aspect/dimension, familiarity with being online, language translation challenge lack of connections with other colleaguescultural/organizational - lack of team work and sharing of resourcesnot enough experience sharing Other:Resistance from students, student inflexibility, Pedagogical rationale for etoolsChange in mindset from teacher centered to learner centeredProfessor passion for teaching not obviousHow does it affect tenure and promotion?Lack of credit/recognition for making effort to go from face-to-face to blended Losing focus on learning goals (distracted by tech problems)Affect on grades (will they go up or down)?Might there be crazy new ways of plagiarism /not doing ones work? Might have to limit % of final grade that comes from non-traditional components.How implement? How manage student expectations (when do they come to campus, how can the prof be disciplined enough to tell the students and students disciplined enough to do what is required?Admin guidelines for the course (what you need to be successful in the course)Effective incentives for studentsSome sort of contract that the student signs before opening on line course modules.
  • 4. How would you change your engagement with the students if you moved to a blended learning model?Top three:More flexible times for contact Shared workloadReaches greater number of students a) More flexible times for contact for students with the materialgreater flexibility to address diverse learning stylesstudent teacher interaction via Skypeonline group activitiessmall course corrections or commentary as neededb)Shared workloaddatabases of past work by studentsAbility to respond with a wider variety of resources c)Reaches greater number of studentsAllows for engagement with more diveres range of students (eg students who may be shy in class)you would know more student (their names)more ESL involvementstudent to student interaction OtherUse of rubric (greater transparency for studentsUse of learning objectivesAll in class time convert to tutorial styleIdentify netiquette communication style boundaries and rulesPractice application, critical thinkingMore change to apply an experienceEnhance their abilitiesForumsUse social constructivist approachesUse models (personality)Fewer theatrical lecturesMore active in discussionsContact can go down - less time for reading student discussionsStill need human contact
  • 5. What type of content would be best suited for online or in the classroom?Top 3 circled:Examples of expectations of course work3 minute videosApplication of concepts. Online:Self quizzes that reinforce content covered in lectures and allow students to test comprehensionRantingPretend studentRole playingPrep content (materials that will outline content for lecturesGuest interview Discussions, videos, podcasts, cases Articles and content workLectures and presentations that are on pptReference material,Ask questionsBlogs, wikis, surveysInternational connectionsOnline student chat archive A database of best practice Online archive of past questions and answersShake it up – do want you want online.Timely articles in the media Classroom:Practicing skillsLabsInteractionOral presentationsTaking up questions raised by students onlineDebateActivities that help retention and learningCase discussionGroup workHuman skillsAudio on MoodleDiscussion of theory
  • What MODELS OF BLENDED LEARNING do you see yourself adopting?-Only two were really presented the rest were just a reiteration of what things could be done on line vs in the classroom QDBLP (Quick and Dirty Blended Learning Prototype)For 1000 level coursesHave lecture online for self directed learning (video podcasts, elearning modules) and have tutorials with smaller groups of students face to face (interactive sessions that will engage students in discussion and activities). Online in class quizzes with immediate feedback to encourage reading of lecture material and participation. Front end loaded onlineLecture content Materials on line then come on campus to practice, provide mechanisms to enforce the student keeping up on the online material. Also provide ongoing assessment of those in need of extra tutoring if they are not understanding the content. Ultimately because these two models are dependent on the year level of the course and the content covered, the path we took was to give the course directors the choice of the type of blended learning they wish to do. We called it the smorgasbord model.
  • 8 courses (ANTH, ADMS, HLST, PHIL, NURS, KINE) affecting 381 (out of 35000 students across the two faculties) students were adapted from face-to-face (f2f) to blended (Bl) format whereby 30-50% of traditional face-to-face time was replaced with online content/activities.Faculty met as a group 3x in the fall term, and then informally with information technology whenever they needed, and received feedback on their course design from an educational consultant.
  • 8 courses (ANTH, ADMS, HLST, PHIL, NURS, KINE) affecting 381 students were adapted from face-to-face (f2f) to blended (Bl) format whereby 30-50% of traditional face-to-face time was replaced with online content/activities.Faculty met as a group 3x in the fall term, and then informally with information technology whenever they needed, and received feedback on their course design from an educational consultant. Getting each instructor to think about the course design What assessment methods do you currently use? What is your current method of delivery? -face to face only?-face to face and putting course content (e.g., power point slides, lecture notes) online?-web-enhanced (e.g., course content on line as well as use lecture capture and/or discussion forums)?- online (no face to face except for in class tests)? Please provide a brief course description. What do you expect the students to be able to do by the end of the course (i.e., what our your learning objectives)?  What activities do you currently engage in to achieve your objectives? What activities are you hoping to engage in to achieve your objectives? How are you planning to deliver your blended course?What will be the ratio of face-to-face to online classes?What will be the face-to-face content?What will be the online content?What type of student-to-student interaction would you like?What type of student-to-faculty interaction would you like?
  • Using existing evaluation rubrics – The institute for research on learning technologies evaluated the website of the 8 courses for organization and layout design, instructional design/delivery, communication, interaction, collaboration, learner support and resources.Quality Online Course Initiative (QOCI) Rubric. An initiative sponsored by Illinois Online Network (ION) University of Illinois. Retrieved February 09, 2012, from http://www.ion.uillinois.edu/initiatives/qoci/rubric.aspQuality MattersTM Rubric Standards 2011-2013 (2011) developed by Quality Matters Program, Maryland Online Inc. Retrieved February 09, 2012, from http://www.qmprogram.org/files/QM_Standards_2011-2013.pdfRubric for Online Instruction (2009). An initiative sponsored by California State University, Chico. Retrieved February 09, 2012, from http://www.csuchico.edu/tlp/resources/rubric/rubric.pdf
  • They also administered to students 31 questions (n=221 students) and instructors (n=7) a survey modified from existing surveys to evaluate whether the blended courses could be sustainable, flexible, accessible and engage the students.Classroom Survey of Student Engagement (CLASSE). An adaptation of the National Survey of Student Engagement (NSSE) with permission from Indiana University. Retrieved November 03, 2011, from http://assessment.ua.edu/CLASSE/Documents/CLASSE_Student.pdfGarrison, D. R., & Vaughan, N. D. (2008). Blended learning in Higher Education: Framework, principles, and guidelines (Appendiices 5 and 6). Jossey-Bass: San Francisco.Blended Course Student Survey | Blended Learning Toolkit, prepared by the University of Central Florida and the American Association of State Colleges and Universities. Retrieved November 03, 2011, from http://blended.online.ucf.edu/evaluation-resources/survey-instruments/Cook, K., Owston, R. D., & Garrison, R. D. (2004). Blended learning Practices at COHERE universities. (Institute for Research on Learning Technologies Technical Report No. 2004-5). Toronto, ON: York University.
  • They also administered to students 31 questions (n=221 students) and instructors (n=7) a survey modified from existing surveys to evaluate whether the blended courses could be sustainable, flexible, accessible and engage the students.Assessed using a 6 point likert scale (strongly agree, agree, neutral, disagree, strongly disagree, NA)
  • They also administered to students 31 questions (n=221 students) and instructors (n=7) a survey modified from existing surveys to evaluate whether the blended courses could be sustainable, flexible, accessible and engage the students.
  • Accessibility, flexibility:79% agreed/strongly agreed it provided a convenience of not having to come to campus every week, 72% agreed/strongly agreed it reduced commuting costs66% agreed/strongly agreed they had better access to the contentEngaged:only 33% agreed/strongly agreed they felt isolated73% agreed/strongly agreed that they were overall satisfied with the blended format70% agreed/strongly agreed that they would take a BL course againPlurality (48%) reported they were more engagedFormat preferred:41% said they preferred the BL format (35% preferred f2f, 23% preferred web enhanced), but this depended on tutorials (preferred f2f) vs discussions (online preferred)58% said online and in class f2f enhanced each other.Controlling for overall GPA, 77% agreed/strongly agreed they were satisfied (and 62% were engaged) when the blended format was approximately 36-40% online (n=78 students).
  • A blended course creates the opportunity to incorporate EE into the course. Experiential education (EE) is a pedagogical approach that blends theory andcoursework with practical, concrete experience. Simply put, within the context of thelearning objectives of a course or a program, EE allows students to acquire ‘real life’experience and to reflect upon this experience such that they deepen theirunderstanding of the theory.
  • The development of a sustainable quality e learning program

    1. 1. The Development of a Sustainable, Quality, e-Learning Program in the Faculties of Health and Liberal Arts & Professional StudiesClick to edit Master text styles Susan Murtha, Avi Cohen, Gary Spraakman, Ron Owston, and Second level York Dennis Third level Fourth level Fifth level October 18, 2012 COHERE / CSSHE Blended Learning Conference 1
    2. 2. Overview • Why do the project? • What did we do? • What methodology did we use? • What did we find? • What have we learned? • How should we move forward?2
    3. 3. Why do it? “Building a More Engaged University: Strategic Directions 2010-2020” (White paper, 2010) • Enhance student engagement and learning through a broader, coordinated, approach by using information and communications technology. • Introduce more blended courses that promote students actively participating in learning (engage). • Provide online course related activities to supplement teaching and learning in a cost-effective way (sustainable). • Use technology as a tool to increase opportunities for students to engage with professors, TA’s, peer mentors. • Increase accessibility for all students3
    4. 4. Why do it? Student body, i.e., commuter students Enrollment pressure (sustainable) (flexible, accessible)4
    5. 5. Why do it? Increase recruitment, retention, satisfaction Engage students Improve student learning Engagement + accessibility + flexibility = satisfaction & success5
    6. 6. Best case Why do it? scenario! Face-to-face with web E-learning objectives Blended Fully online enhancement • Limited scalability, growth • Potential greater use of • Maximum scalability requires more space physical space available Enrollment pressure • Development costs • Development costs for web- • Development costs • Infrastructure costs enhancement portion • Infrastructure costs • Commuting savings depends Experience for • Maximum commuting on proportion of face-to-face • No commuting time commuter students • Minimum flexibility time • Maximum time flexibility • Enhanced flexibility • Maximum in-person • Enhanced online community • No in-person connections Engagement connections and in-person connections • Limited to online discussion • Minimum online engagement • Student preference • Minimum accommodation to • Limited flexibility to student • Multiple formats different learning styles learning styles Student learning accommodate many different • Good for student w/o time • Success requires maturity learning styles management skills/maturity and time management skills6
    7. 7. What did we do? Developed a common language: • E-learning = Electronic delivery of course content and instruction • Blended learning = Re-imagining of how to deliver the content such that between 30-70% of the in-class time is replaced by online activities in order to achieve learning objectives.7
    8. 8. What did we do? Attempted to obtain “buy in” from faculty members to adapt course to blended format • (a) Showcase best practices • (b) Educate faculty about blended learning Attempted to define two models of blended learning to pilot and evaluate in courses8
    9. 9. What did we do? (a) Shared experiences event • Three faculty members (law, nursing, social work) shared experiences about using blended approach • Responses to the Q “How do we get faculty involved?” • Cash incentives • Access to professional development • Create a website providing best practice instances, various tools, and resources • Face-to-face consultants • Reward and recognition9
    10. 10. What did we do? (b) Blended learning information session and workshop • Presenter: Norman Vaughan, co-author of “Blended Learning in Higher Education” • 45 faculty & IT staff attended morning information session (video streamed) • Topics covered: Unpacking blended learning, inquiry through blended learning, student engagement • Discussed opportunities and challenges10
    11. 11. What did we do? Workgroup session • 28 faculty and technology staff attended afternoon workgroup session • Discussed five questions related to blended learning • Proposed models/prototypes of blended learning11
    12. 12. What did we do? Outcomes (top 3 to 4) to 5 specific questions addressed to workgroup: What factors would influence you to change your course from your current delivery model to 30-70% online? • Beneficial for the students (demand, suitability for content, demographic of learner) • Course development support (design and tech) • Instructor time commitment & incentives • Class size, type of room, scheduling of course12
    13. 13. What did we do? What are the benefits of blended learning for the course instructors and the students? • Increase sharing of knowledge amongst course directors and students • Flexibility (hours and physical space) • More opportunities for collaboration with other universities and geographically13
    14. 14. What did we do? What challenges do you foresee if you try to achieve your learning objectives by moving some content and activities online or continuing as you have in the classroom? • Lack of resources (untrained TAs, infrastructure, e.g., bandwidth, keeping up with workload) • Size of class (familiarity with being online) • Lack of connections/resources sharing with colleagues14
    15. 15. What did we do? How would you change your engagement with the students if you moved to a blended learning model? • More flexible times for contact • Shared workload • Reaches greater number of students • Greater transparency for students15
    16. 16. What did we do?16
    17. 17. What did we do? What models of blended learning do you see yourself adopting? • Smorgasbord model offered17
    18. 18. What did we do? 8 courses (7 instructors) in 2011/2012 adapted course from face-to-face (f2f) to blended (Bl) format • Instructors met as a group 3x in fall term to discuss any concerns or issues • Instructors consulted with Information Technology18
    19. 19. What did we do? Asked instructors to reflect on course design • What assessment methods do you currently use? • What is your current method of delivery? • What do you expect the students to be able to do by the end of the course? • What activities do you currently engage in to achieve your objectives? • What activities are you hoping to engage in to achieve your objectives? • What will be the ratio of face-to-face to online classes? • What will be the face-to-face content? • What will be the online content? Received feedback on course design from educational consultant19
    20. 20. What methodology did we use? Modified existing evaluation rubrics • Quality Online Course Initiative Rubric by Illinois Online Network • Quality Matters Rubric Standards • Rubric for Online Instruction by CSU, Chico Evaluated Moodle Websites (major criteria) • Organization & layout design • Instructional design & delivery • Communication, interaction, & collaboration • Learner support & resources20
    21. 21. What methodology did we use? Modified existing surveys • Classroom Survey of Student Engagement (CLASSE) • Blended Course Student Survey | Blended Learning Toolkit Survey administration • 221 students & 7 instructors participated • 31 questions framed to address sustainability, flexibility, accessibility, and engagement21
    22. 22. What methodology did we use? Student survey questions • 5-point Likert scale (strongly agree, agree, neutral, disagree, strongly disagree) • e.g., of enrollment pressure questions to students “How much you agree or disagree with the following statements:” • Overall, I am satisfied with this course. • Given the opportunity I would take another course in the future that has both online and face-to-face components.22
    23. 23. What methodology did we use? Faculty survey questions • 5-point Likert scale (strongly agree, agree, neutral, disagree, strongly disagree) • e.g., of survey questions to instructors addressing student engagement “Compared to typical face-to-face courses I have taught… • …teaching a blended course is a time-consuming experience • …students are more engaged in the blended course • …I feel that the quality of student-to-instructor interaction increased.”23
    24. 24. What did we find? Course Websites: Main Results Most course websites were easy to navigate. A few had minor functional and visual inconsistencies. 3/8 course websites provided a definition of blended learning but the definition varied between courses. 0/8 course websites had information about what it meant to be a learner in a blended course (such as possible challenges, suggested tips). 5/8 courses had a good agreement between proportion of online time and proportion of grading for online activities.24
    25. 25. What did we find? Student survey: Main results Blended format increased Blended format Accessibility/Flexibility increased engagement agreed/strongly agreed agreed/strongly agreed disagreed/neutral disagreed/neutral • Provided a convenience of not having to come to • Satisfied with blended (73%) class every week (79%) • Would take another blended course (70%) • Reduced commuting costs (72%) • Did not feel isolated with online component • Better access to content (66%) (66%)25
    26. 26. What did we find? Did the Bl format improve student learning? • Median GPA of students was B/B+ • 56% agreed/strongly agreed they improved their understanding of key concepts in their Bl course better than a f2f course26
    27. 27. What did we find? Typical positive comments • “I really like how this course is both online and in class as it addresses different methods of learning. Coming to class just helps me maintain a routine and I like interaction in person. Also it isn’t super long so I don’t get bored or stop paying attention.” • “I liked the course overall. The connection of online and in-class activities was successful and helped my grades balance out.”27
    28. 28. What did we find? Typical negative comments • “Online discussion is more of an obligation. It seems obvious that many students feel this way too.” • “I don’t appreciate the blended course because I am being pulled in too many directions. I am not always on my laptop.”28
    29. 29. What did we find? Faculty survey: Main results 6/7 agreed/strongly agreed that working with this format provided an opportunity to experiment with new teaching methodologies. 5/6 agreed/strongly agreed that the quality of the Student-Student interaction improved. 5/6 agreed/strongly agreed that students’ overall performance was better. 5/7 disagreed that preparation takes the same time as for a f2f course.29
    30. 30. What have we learned? Positive outcomes • For our commuter students (>2/3 are working part-time), Bl format addresses the need for > flexibility in course offering & < cost/time associated with commuting • Adapting to Bl format provides an opportunity for instructors to learn new teaching methodologies • Students tended to perform better and interact with each other better overall30
    31. 31. What have we learned? Lessons learned: • Online activities must be meaningful and appropriately graded/weighted to engage students in the content. • Effort needs to be made to refrain from creating a “course and a half.” • Blended format does not necessarily meet the learning preferences of all students.31
    32. 32. How should we move forward? • Ensure students are properly informed about courses offered in the Bl format (communication). • Ensure students are aware of learning outcomes (online vs. in class requirements) (communication). • Encourage instructor presence in online environment (engagement) • Avoid course-and-a-half syndrome (communication). • Ensure instructors learn how to prepare and measure appropriate online activities to address course objectives (professional development).32
    33. 33. Questions? For more information… Susan Murtha Technical Report No 2012-3 Project Co-lead http://irlt.yorku.ca/reports.html Academic Innovation Funded Project (2010-2013) smurtha@yorku.ca33

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