The Electronic Journal of e-Learning provides perspectives on topics relevant to the study, implementation and management of e-Learning initiatives
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Journal Article

Piloting a Process Maturity Model as an e‑Learning Benchmarking Method  pp49-58

Jim Petch, Gayle Calverley, Hilary Dexter, Tim Cappelli

© Mar 2007 Volume 5 Issue 1, ECEL 2006, Editor: Shirley Williams, pp1 - 86

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Abstract

As part of a national e‑learning benchmarking initiative of the UK Higher Education Academy, the University of Manchester is carrying out a pilot study of a method to benchmark e‑learning in an institution. The pilot was designed to evaluate the operational viability of a method based on the e‑Learning Maturity Model developed at the University of Wellington, New Zealand, which, in turn was derived from Carnegie Mellon's widely accepted Capability Maturity Model. The method is based on gathering evidence about the many and interdependent processes in the e‑learning and student lifecycles and takes a holistic view of maturity, addressing multiple aspects. This paper deals with the rationale for the selected method and explains the adoption of a process based approach. It describes the iterative refinement of the questionnaire used to elicit evidence for measures of five aspects of maturity in a range of e‑learning processes, in five process areas. The pilot study will produce a map of evidence of e‑learning practice across the processes matrix and a measure of the degree of embedding in a sample of faculties within the institution expressed as capability and maturity. To provide a useful measure of where an organisation is with respect to a particular aspect of e‑learning, it needs to be able to act on that measure, finding any new activities required or modifying current activities to improve its processes. The pilot study aims to evaluate the potential for improvement inherent in the capability maturity model and to examine the resource implications of obtaining useful evidence. A successful benchmarking effort should be able to inform an institution's planning and resourcing processes and the outcomes of this pilot should lead to an informed decision about a method for benchmarking the embedding of e‑learning, both for the particular institution and for the sector, which in turn can lead to operational suggestions for improvement.

 

Keywords: embedding, e-learning, process, maturity, benchmarking

 

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Journal Article

Competency — and Process‑Driven e‑Learning — a Model‑Based Approach  pp183-194

Katrina Leyking, Pavlina Chikova, Peter Loos

© Dec 2007 Volume 5 Issue 3, ICEL 2007, Editor: Shirley Williams, pp173 - 250

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Abstract

As a matter of fact e‑Learning still has not really caught on for corporate training purposes. Investigations on the reasons reveal that e‑Learning modules like WBTs often miss any relevance for the tasks to be accomplished in the day‑to‑day workplace settings. The very learning needs both from an organizational and individual perspective are neglected. Content brought to the learner very often meets neither the individual competency gaps nor the organizational learning goals. Time passed between acquisition and application of knowledge is too long. In short, business processes on the one side and learning‑related processes on the other are not aligned adequately. Thus, we see an urgent need for concepts on how to derive corporate training actions from business tasks in order to improve employees' business performance. This paper presents an integrated approach for competency‑ and business process‑driven learning management supported by information technology (IT), developed within two projects named PROLIX and EXPLAIN.

 

Keywords: authoring, business process management, competency development, learning content, learning objectives, learning processes

 

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Journal Article

Exploring the e‑Learning State of Art  pp149-160

Evelyn Kigozi Kahiigi, Love Ekenberg, Henrik Hansson, F.F Tusubira Danielson, Mats Danielson

© Apr 2008 Volume 6 Issue 2, Editor: Shirley Williams, pp99 - 182

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Abstract

e‑Learning implementation is an area in progress that continues to evolve with time and further research. Researchers in the field argue that e‑Learning is still in its infancy, resulting into numerous implementation strategies across a wide e‑Learning spectrum. This paper explores the e‑Learning state of art. It provides a general overview of the learning process, evaluates some current implementation trends pointing out a range of frameworks and strategies used in the past decade. It further looks at the changes created by the adoption of e‑Learning within the higher education process. This is followed by an identification of emerging issues from which two problems are identified; 1) the limited uptake of technology as an instruction delivery method; and 2) the ineffective use of technology to support learning. In respect to this, future research should therefore seek to further investigate these aspects and to explore suitable approaches for effective implementation of e‑Learning to support learning. Not the least in higher education contexts.

 

Keywords: e-Learning learning, e-Learning implementation higher education, learning process, learning theories, learning methods

 

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Journal Article

Implications of the Social Web Environment for User Story Education  pp44-59

Terrill Fancott, Pankaj Kamthan, Nazlie Shahmir

© Mar 2012 Volume 10 Issue 1, ICEL 2011, Editor: Philip Balcean, pp1 - 158

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Abstract

In recent years, user stories have emerged in academia, as well as industry, as a notable approach for expressing user requirements of interactive software systems that are developed using agile methodologies. There are social aspects inherent to software development, in general, and user stories, in particular. This paper presents directions and means for incorporating the Social Web environment in user story education. In doing so, it proposes a methodology, SW4USE, for such integration. SW4USE consists of a user story process model, USPM, and Social Web technologies/applications that can contribute to the execution of the steps of USPM. A collection of scenarios of use, for both teachers in their classroom lectures and students in their team‑based course projects, are presented, and potential learning outcomes are given. The ephemeral and essential challenges in the realization of SW4USE, particularly those related to quality, are highlighted.

 

Keywords: agile methodology, collaboration, dissemination, process model, user requirement, Web 2.0

 

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Journal Article

Review of Use of Animation as a Supplementary Learning Material of Physiology Content in Four Academic Years  pp368-377

Isabel Hwang, Michael Tam, Shun Leung Lam, Paul Lam

© Oct 2012 Volume 10 Issue 4, ICEL 2012, Editor: Paul Lam, pp360 - 440

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Abstract

Dynamic concepts are difficult to explain in traditional media such as still slides. Animations seem to offer the advantage of delivering better representations of these concepts. Compared with static images and text, animations can present procedural information (e.g. biochemical reaction steps, physiological activities) more explicitly as they show the steps in an orderly manner. Quite a few empirical studies showed promising results animations have on learning (e.g. Trevisan, Oki and Senger, 2009; Hays, 1996). There are, however, also limitations. Designing and developing quality animations for teaching and learning can be challenging sometimes (Morrison, Tversky and Betrancourt, 2000). Kesner and Linzey (2005) even found no improvement on students’ learning in using animations in their study. It thus occurs to the researchers that there are factors that govern successful use of animation in teaching and learning. Our study explored such factors in the context of physiology teaching. 913 students in twelve different classes (collected in two stages, four years in total) in the same physiology course learned complicated microscopic mechanisms with assistance from animations provided as supplementary materials primarily for self‑study. Surveys and group interviews were conducted that provided both qualitative and quantitative feedback. Results were mostly positive ‑ animations surely explain contents more explicitly to students (especially for the explanation of dynamic and complicated biological processes), make students more interested in the subjects taught; and there is a greater demand for similar learning tools from the students. It is strongly believed that animations are good supplementary learning materials for students particularly for learning complicated concepts. Important success factors we found included the detailed explanation of content, a good balance between clear presentation and beautiful interface, the speed of running/ loading of the animations, and the provision of more references, etc.

 

Keywords: dynamic physiology process, supplementary use of animation, advantage of animation in teaching, successful factors of using animation, animation for student revision, learning with animation

 

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Journal Article

Designing competency based e‑Learning initiatives  pp220-229

Giota Xini, Kostas Petropoulos

© Jan 2004 Volume 2 Issue 1, Special Issue for ECEL 2003, Editor: Roy Williams, pp1 - 239

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Abstract

 

Keywords: Personalised learning, e-Learning process, learning delivery

 

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Journal Article

Enhanced Approach of Automatic Creation of Test Items to foster Modern Learning Setting  pp23-38

Christian Gutl, Klaus Lankmayr, Joachim Weinhofer, Margit Hofler

© Apr 2011 Volume 9 Issue 1, ECEL 2010 special issue, Editor: Carlos Vaz de Carvalho, pp1 - 114

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Abstract

Research in automated creation of test items for assessment purposes became increasingly important during the recent years. Due to automatic question creation it is possible to support personalized and self‑directed learning activities by preparing appropriate and individualized test items quite easily with relatively little effort or even fully automatically. In this paper, which is an extended version of the conference paper of Gütl, Lankmayr and Weinhofer (2010), we present our most recent work on the automated creation of different types of test items. More precisely, we describe the design and the development of the Enhanced Automatic Question Creator (EAQC) which extracts most important concepts out of textual learning content and creates single choice, multiple‑choice, completion exercises and open ended questions on the basis of these concepts. Our approach combines statistical, structural and semantic methods of natural language processing as well as a rule‑based AI solution for concept extraction and test item creation. The prototype is designed in a flexible way to support easy changes or improvements of the above mentioned methods. EAQC is designed to deal with multilingual learning material and in its recent version English and German content is supported. Furthermore, we discuss the usage of the EAGC from the users’ viewpoint and also present first results of an evaluation study in which students were asked to evaluate the relevance of the extracted concepts and the quality of the created test items. Results of this study showed that the concepts extracted and questions created by the EAQC were indeed relevant with respect to the learning content. Also the level of the questions and the provided answers were appropriate. Regarding the terminology of the questions and the selection of the distractors, which had been criticized most during the evaluation study, we discuss some aspects that could be considered in the future in order to enhance the automatic generation of questions. Nevertheless the results are promising and suggest that the quality of the automatically extracted concepts and created test items is comparable to human generated ones.

 

Keywords: e-assessment, automated test item creation, distance learning, self-directed learning, natural language processing, computer-based assessment

 

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Journal Article

Designing educational games for computer programming: A holistic framework  pp281-298

Christos Malliarakis, Maya Satratzemi, Stelios Xinogalos

© Jun 2014 Volume 12 Issue 3, Special Edition for ECGBL 2013, Editor: Carlos Vaz de Carvalho and Paula Escudeiro, pp227 - 311

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Abstract

Abstract: Computer science is continuously evolving during the past decades. This has also brought forth new knowledge that should be incorporated and new learning strategies must be adopted for the successful teaching of all sub‑domains. For example, com puter programming is a vital knowledge area within computer science with constantly changing curriculum and its teaching remains a difficult endeavour. On the other hand, students start from a very early age to interact with computers through games and ot her entertaining multimedia software. Therefore, they seem to be keen on environments with impressive special effects and graphical interfaces where they interact with the environments elements. In response, teachers are trying to connect computer progra mming learning with computer operations that students are familiar with, which does not include textual editors for programming lines of code with no other interaction. Educational games used in computer programming courses are considered to benefit learn ing, because they motivate students towards actively participating and interacting with the games activities. Thus, we have developed an educational multiplayer game that aims to further enhance computer programming education by addressing occurring prob lems. This process, however, requires proper planning during the design of educational games, and thus the availability of adequate guidelines that include all characteristics that should be incorporated in such games. This paper aims to introduce and ela borate on a holistic framework that has been constructed as a guide towards the development of this game. To this end, we study existing frameworks that have been proposed for the design of educational games and document features currently supported by ed ucational games that teach computer programming. We conclusively propose the framework we have constructed for the design of our game. This framework can be used for the design of other computer programming‑specific educational games and extended for othe r educational domains.

 

Keywords: Keywords: computer programming, educational programming environments, educational games, holistic framework, learning process

 

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