Educating the Masses: Understanding the needs and expectations of students in large or online learning environments to inform effective teaching practices

    Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference proceedingpeer-review

    Abstract

    An in-depth investigation into students' approaches to learning at a UK University revealed the importance of addressing the needs and expectations of individual student cohorts. However, this can be problematic for lecturers teaching large or online courses where opportunities for interacting with their students can be limited (1).

    To address this problem, qualitative data gathered from lecturers and students across the University were analysed and used to develop a surveying instrument for lecturers and course leaders to employ at the start of students' courses or modules. The Theoretical Domains Framework (TDF), primarily used in the field of health (2), was adapted for use in an educational context and provided the theoretical basis for the survey's development. The TDF synthesises psychological theories specifically aimed at developing interventions that encourage behaviour change.

    The resultant instrument enables lecturers to accurately uncover the areas where guidance is most needed. Furthermore, lecturers can use this process across all educational disciplines without any knowledge of cohorts' prior educational experiences or expectations.

    The instrument has been successfully piloted across all faculties at the University, with demonstrated benefits for the lecturers and student cohorts who participated. This paper will use anonymised data from the pilot study, including survey results and interviews with participants, to illustrate these benefits. Additionally, common themes emerging from the data will be presented and the potential advantages of using the resultant data at an institutional level will be discussed. Finally, participants will be encouraged to contemplate how this approach could benefit their courses or modules at their own institutions and the possibilities of implementing the approach throughout the higher education sector will be considered.

    References:
    [1] O'Reilly NJ, Rahinel R, Foster MK, et al. (2007) Connecting in megaclasses: The netnographic advantage. Journal of Marketing Education, 29 (1), 69-84.
    [2] Phillips CJ, Marshall AP, Chaves NJ, et al. (2015) Experiences of using the Theoretical Domains Framework across diverse clinical environments: a qualitative study. Journal of Multidisciplinary Healthcare, 8: 139-146.
    Original languageEnglish
    Title of host publicationEduLearn 2018 Proceedings
    PublisherIATED Academy
    Pages1560-1566
    ISBN (Print)978-84-09-02709-5
    DOIs
    Publication statusPublished - 2 Jul 2018
    EventEDULEARN18 10th annual International Conference on Education and New Learning Technologies - Palma de Mallorca, Spain
    Duration: 2 Jul 20184 Jul 2018
    https://library.iated.org/publication_series/EDULEARN

    Publication series

    NameEDULEARN Proceedings
    ISSN (Print)2340-1117

    Conference

    ConferenceEDULEARN18 10th annual International Conference on Education and New Learning Technologies
    CountrySpain
    CityPalma de Mallorca
    Period2/07/184/07/18
    Internet address

    Keywords

    • Study Skills
    • Student Engagement
    • Large Classes
    • Lecturer-Student Relationships
    • Teaching Efficacy

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