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Blended Learning: Key to Skills, Content, and Language Learning Success


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Eric Brewster from Johannes Kepler University Linz gave a presentation about Blended Learning: Key to Skills, Content, and Language Learning Success as part of the online events by expert pool Curriculum development & Course design within EMPOWER.

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Blended Learning: Key to Skills, Content, and Language Learning Success

  1. 1. Blended Learning: Key to Skills, Content, and Language Learning Success Eric M. Brewster
  2. 2. Overview  Principles and Fundamentals of (e-) Learning and (e-)Teaching  Challenges and Design for Curriculum Integration  MuSSS English 1 & 2 - A Blended Learning Model  Building Communities of Practice: A Case Study  Experience and Observations  Final Thoughts Dr. Eric M. Brewster
  3. 3. Three Principles of Teaching and Learning  "The acquisition of knowledge is a dynamic and interactive process in which the learner seeks, discovers and applies learning in real world, problem- solving situations.“  "Self-access by definition is an individual path to knowledge, the discovery of one’s own limitations, and the chance to break through individual barriers.“  “The goal of teaching is to enable learning to take place.” -Laurillard (1993). Rethinking University Teaching.
  4. 4. Seven Principles – Best Practices Encourage student-faculty contact Encourage contact among students Encourage active learning Give prompt feedback Emphasize time on task Communicate high expectations Respect diverse talents and ways of learning (Chickering & Gamson, 1987) Dr. Eric M. Brewster
  5. 5. Fundamentals of Teaching and Learning LEARNERS SKILLS CONTENT Learning Learning Learning LANGUAGE in contextby doing for life Brewster (1995, 2) Dr. Eric M. Brewster
  6. 6. Thoughts on New Technologies  Support for learning in a more effective way than conventional classroom instruction  Support for learning complex content and skills  Promote and support communities of practice and participatory, collaborative models of education  Blended Learning among top 10 trends in education and training  Blended Learning to overtake other models of instruction (Mean, Toyama, Murphy & Baki, 2013, 3-8)
  7. 7. The Current Situation at JKU 20,000 students – campus, commuters Increasing numbers of students working full or part time Numerous single parents and care givers Cannot leave jobs or families several days a week to attend F2F classes Regional orientation Dr. Eric M. Brewster
  8. 8. Working Students at JKU 82% employed 19% 1>10 hrs./wk 35% 11>35 hrs./wk 27% 36>45 hrs./wk. with a rising tendency 50% to support themselves and their education 40% to improve their lifestyle/standard of living (Batinic, Jodlbauer & Felbinger, 2009) Dr. Eric M. Brewster
  9. 9. Need for Individualization Increasing heterogenity and diversity of students Age of students increasing Alternative educational paths Language nouveau differences Reasons for taking up studies
  10. 10. The Challenges – in and outside of the Classroom Use social and communication skills Use IT skills Use language skills Use content knowledge Work at a distance; work in a team SAL Work across “cultures” Dr. Eric M. Brewster
  11. 11. The Goal Dr. Eric M. Brewster SALInteraction Reflection
  12. 12. MuSSS Multimedia Studies Service in Social and Economic Sciences  MuSSS: “bring the campus to the student”  Core courses – Social and Economic Sciences  blended learning mode  F2F – regional centers  Online – MOODLE and Adobe Connect Dr. Eric M. Brewster
  13. 13. The Solution: MuSSS Courses with no or reduced F2F attendance Condensed F2F phases Courses on weekends and during summer months Blended Learning emphasis and course design Multimedia support Regional centers Half-semester modules Dr. Eric M. Brewster
  14. 14. Development History Pilotphase 2008 Currently 60 % of Curriculum in Business, Economics, and Social Sciences offered as MuSSS courses English First module WS 09/10 First summer courses 2010 First year long course 2015 Dr. Eric M. Brewster
  15. 15. MuSSS Curriculum for English  Module English 1 :  Communicative Skills  Business English 1 6 ECTS (150 hrs.)  Module English 2  Intercultural Skills and Language Development  Business English 2 6 ECTS (150 hrs.) Dr. Eric M. Brewster
  16. 16. Strategies Optimize learning environment Promote willingness to learn English Promote positive Teacher-Learner attitudes Awareness of problems in English learning Increase self-access and confidence Group size Limit numbers to 24 per course Dr. Eric M. Brewster
  17. 17. Das Blended Learning Concept 1+1+1= 1 F2F Self-studyOnline
  18. 18. BLENDED LEARNING Intensive work with English in blocked course meetings Weekly chat sessions 1/3 more contact than in traditional courses Self-access, self-study tasks, portfolio
  19. 19. Implementation F2F Online chats Self-study- on and off line
  20. 20. Design and Support F2F Self-studyOnline  Moodle  Adobe Connect©  KuSSS  Email  Telephone ----------------------------  TellMeMore©  Emmerson, Business Vocabulary Builder, Macmillian, 2009
  21. 21. MuSSS Module Design  25 hrs. F2F and Online Chat  25 hrs. SAL with TMM  25 hrs. Homework, Preparation, Learning Plan Dr. Eric M. Brewster F L E X I B L E
  22. 22. Placement and Self-evaluation GERS Self-assessment grid Learning plan Placement Test TMM Individual Supervision Dr. Eric M. Brewster
  23. 23. Weekly Chat Sessions Agenda Sign-on and system check Discussion Questions on Identity and Nationality Tasks for March 23 Sign-off
  24. 24. Chat Example
  25. 25. Chat Example
  26. 26. Evaluation 1 Weekly chats useful for practice of learned material/content/language (14/15) Problems seen with slow connections and waiting on others less versed in technology (1/15) 4/15 expressed chat as help to overcome shyness Problems overcome by activities, reshuffling in group work, F2F community. Dr. Eric M. Brewster
  27. 27. Evaluation Engl. 2 Ranking from S2014 course, n= 7 F2F and Chats = 1 Self-access tasks (homework, research) = 2 Online exam = 3 Positive feedback on all components Feeling of contribution of all parts to learning Feedback highly valued Dr. Eric M. Brewster
  28. 28. Community and Place Learners and Instructors Goals and Requirements Attitudes Community Building Activities Sense of Place Success Factors Dr. Eric M. Brewster
  29. 29. Academic Writing C1 Specialization in Social and Economic Sciences, Law Weekly, F2F, online (set time, asynchronous forum), ECTS 3 Focus on Process Writing Research Feedback Supervision Dr. Eric M. Brewster
  30. 30. Task Topics Discussed in Blog Writing status quo Finding a topic Writing a proposal Developing a thesis statement Outlining Finding and evaluating resources Referencing Drafting Mechanics Paper to poster Dr. Eric M. Brewster
  31. 31. Evaluation AW AW Forum blog-Peer Review-F2F feedback n= 18 from 20 Solutions and language skills development (14/18) Interaction (14/18) Feedback (12/18) Reflection (9/18) Dr. Eric M. Brewster
  32. 32. Project Achievements  400+ learners enrolled since WS 2009  2 regional centers established  Summer Schools 2010, 2014-present  Evaluations 2010 – 2011 – 2014– 2015 to present  ESIS (European Language Label) certification and award 2013  Year long program implemented 2015 Dr. Eric M. Brewster
  33. 33. Lessons Learned  Different (e-)Learner and (e-)Teacher demands  Effective course design - Blended Learning  Profit for learners: topics, technology, time on task  Balance and discipline  Awareness of principles and parameters Dr. Eric M. Brewster
  34. 34. Speaking for Themselves  R.W., June 21, Chat 14:  “interest raising to continue on my own. All components build a solid base. Nothing can substitute use to learn a language in a sustainable way.”  G.G., June 21, Chat 14:  “amount of things to do, workload adds to effectiveness, process of recognition, revision, recycling” Dr. Eric M. Brewster
  35. 35. Speaking for Themselves "Only the classroom is not enough." Dr. Eric M. Brewster
  36. 36. Final Thoughts
  37. 37. Final Thoughts  F2F and online demand a redefinition of roles for learners and teachers.  ICT promotes communicative capabilities, key skills, and content understanding.  Self-directed learning is the goal; the path, however, is free to choose. Dr. Eric M. Brewster
  38. 38. References  Batinic, B., Jodlbauer, S., and Felbinger, G. (2009). Erhebung zur Studiensituation an der JKU - 2008. (unpublished project survey report) Linz: University of Linz.  Brewster, E. (1995). Vocationally Oriented Language Learning: Problems, Possibilities, Perspectives. Vienna: Braumüller Verlag.  Chickering, A. and Gamson, Z. (Eds.). (1987). Seven principles for good practice in undergraduate education. In: AAHE Bulletin, 38(7), 3-7.  Laurillard, D. (1993/2002).Rethinking University Education, London: Routledge.  Means, B., Toyama, Y., Murphy, R. and Baki, M. (2013, March). The Effectiveness of Online and Blended Learning: A Meta Analysis of the Empirical Literature. In: Teachers College Record, Volume 115, 1-47. Dr. Eric M. Brewster
  39. 39. Contact Dr. Eric M. Brewster Department of Business Languages and Intercultural Communication Johannes Kepler University, Linz, Austria Dr. Eric M. Brewster