The Distance Learning Forum held a research seminar on technology enhanced learning (TEL) on Wednesday 26th September, with invited speakers Professor Eileen Scanlon and Dr Canan Blake from the Open University’s Institute of Educational Technology addressing a mixed group of staff and research students. This was the first of what we hope will be a series of seminars at the University of York, which will serve as a forum to discuss research techniques and sector developments in the domain of TEL.
Professor Scanlon reported on the work of the Institute and the range of research projects which are running in relation to the key research themes: Digital Scholarship; Learning in an Open World; Next Generation Distance Learning.
One of the key developments that Eileen identified was in the domain of science learning using technology – specifically the use of mobile technology to support formal, informal and situated science education.
Dr Blake focused her talk on collaborative processes and interaction patterns in online discussions, reporting on a series of case studies in which content analysis of discussion logs had been applied. In the presentation Dr Blake set out the classification system for tagging discussion logs as a way of assessing the quality of student learning online. The principal categories that were identified related to collaborative processes of ‘joint knowledge building’, acknowledging a fellow student by replying/referring to their contribution and motivation of students (indicated by a mention of their individual commitment to group tasks).
If you would like to know more about this seminar or would like to suggest a theme for a future session to explore, please contact Richard Walker.