International Journal of Teaching and Learning in Higher Education
IJTLHE
International Journal of Teaching and Learning in Higher Education
IJTLHE
International Journal of Teaching and Learning in Higher Education
IJTLHE
International Journal of Teaching and Learning in Higher Education
IJTLHE
2012: Volume 24 Number 1
Reviewers for Issue 24(1)
Craig Brians Virginia Tech
Sheri Beattie Saginaw Valley State University
Lauren Bryant North Carolina State University
C. Noel Byrd Eastern Kentucky University
Leslie Cramblet Alvarez University of Denver
Peter Daly EDHEC Business School
Clare Dannenberg University of Alaska Anchorage
Tracey Devonport University of Wolverhampton
Peter Doolittle Virginia Tech
Anneke Fitzgerald University of Western Sydney
Christine Hockings University of Wolverhampton
Nila Ginger Hofman DePaul University
Cindy Ives Athabasca University
Christine Kessen Marywood University
Lenore Kinne Northern Kentucky University
Pamela Kiser Elon University
Ernest Koh Monash University
James Lane Columbia College
Laura Levi Altstaedter East Carolina University
Cortney Martin Virginia Tech
Marina Micari Northwestern University
Maung Thein Myint Civil Engineering Dept, New Mexico State University
Kim Niewolny Virginia Tech
Carol Parker Sam Houston State University
Kelly Parkes Virginia Tech
Sarah Quinton Oxford Brookes University
Debra Swoboda York College/City University of New York
Krista Terry Appalachian State University
Siew Ming Thang The National University of Malaysia
Darcelle White Eastern Michigan University
Frank Wray University of Cincinnati

2012 - Research Article
Lilly, E.
Views: 1255       [1080]
Abstract: In-class debates are frequently used to encourage student engagement. Ideally, after researching both sides of the debate, students will form their own opinions based on what they have learned. However, in a large course of Environmental Science, opinions of students, when surveyed after the debate, were remarkably consistent with the position that they had been assigned. This study aimed to determine whether an assigned debate position influenced student opinion. Prior to being assigned a debate position, 132 students in Environmental Science were polled for their opinions on six controversial issues. Each student was assigned to a position, without regard to their opinion, for a debate on one of the issues. Students researched both positions and constructed arguments and counter arguments for both sides, but only argued one side of the debate in class. One week following the debates, students were again polled for their opinions. Prior to debating, only 41% of students happened to agree with their assigned position, yet following the debates, 77% of students agreed with their assigned positions (p = 0.0000005). This suggests that researching and/or arguing an assigned position in a class debate influences student opinion toward that position.

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Abstract: The purpose of this study was to explain how participation in an international service-learning project during a community health course influenced transcultural self-efficacy of baccalaureate nursing graduates following graduation and their subsequent clinical practice. A qualitative, explanatory case study was used to conduct telephone interviews with 14 nursing graduates, who had previously participated in international trips to Ecuador or Guatemala. A constant comparative analysis revealed themes related to increased self-efficacy in the cognitive, practical, and affective learning dimensions of cultural competence. Additional themes focused on the importance of experiential learning, the provision of culturally congruent care, and a commitment to international service. The findings indicate that service-learning promotes social growth while providing opportunities to increase self-efficacy during cultural encounters with diverse populations. Nursing graduates were able to provide culturally congruent care as a result of their increased transcultural self-efficacy.

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Abstract: Colleges and universities recognize that one of the primary goals of higher education is to promote students’ ability to think critically. Using data from the Wabash National Study of Liberal Arts Education (WNS), this study examined the relationship between faculty teaching practices and the development of students’ critical thinking skills, specifically the differences between students’ self- report and the direct assessment (i.e., CAAP) of critical thinking. The results from multinomial logistic regression and OLS regression analyses showed that asking challenging questions increased both students’ self-reported and the directly measured critical thinking abilities. Interpreting abstract concepts as well as giving well-organized presentation increased students’ self-reported gains in critical thinking; however, these same practices did not significantly impact their CAAP scores. Inconsistent with previous literature, class presentations as well as group discussions decreased either students’ self-reported or directly assessed critical thinking abilities. These findings can guide faculty teaching practices to foster critical thinking for first-year college students.

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2012 - Research Article
Goroshit, M., Hen, M.
Views: 584       [1141]
Abstract: In recent decades, emotional intelligence (EI) has emerged as one of the crucial components of emotional adjustment, personal well-being, interpersonal relationships, and overall success in life. Yet few professional curricula adequately address this subject. The results of this study indicate that the potential for enhanced emotional intelligence can be improved in the traditional classroom, employing experiential teaching methods. Further, the findings revealed a significant difference in stability measures between social work and education students, indicating that EI course “Doing Psychotherapy” (conceived by the study’s authors) has a differential effect on students of the two faculties. This suggests that EI may not be perceived by all students in the same way; rather, specific goals, the nature of the participants, and the professional setting must be taken into consideration when assessing the impact of EI programs in higher education. Future research should focus on specific EI teaching strategies and on designing evaluation studies that assess changes in knowledge (learning), behavior (expertise), and results (performance).

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2012 - Research Article
Sockalingam, N., Rotgans, J., Schmidt, H.
Views: 660       [1155]
Abstract: This study evaluated the construct validity and reliability of a newly devised 32-item problem quality rating scale intended to measure the quality of problems in problem-based learning. The rating scale measured the following five characteristics of problems: the extent to which the problem (1) leads to learning objectives, (2) is familiar, (3) interests students, (4) stimulates critical reasoning, and (5) promotes collaborative learning. The rating scale was administered to 517 polytechnic students enrolled in problem-based curricula and the data collected were subjected to confirmatory factor analysis. The results revealed a good fit of the data with the hypothesized five-factor model. The coefficient H values of the five factors suggested acceptable factor reliability. Overall, the psychometric characteristics of the rating scale indicated adequacy of the instrument to measure the quality of problems in problem-based learning. Although there are other ways to assess problem quality, the ease of use and means to measure multiple indicators makes the problem quality rating scale useful.

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Abstract: Considerable effort has been placed on understanding and enhancing online interaction to increase student learning, examine teaching strategies, and build learning communities. This research explored another aspect of interaction: the emergence of scholarship by graduate students through asynchronous discussion. Qualitative analysis of archived discussion postings found that graduate students rely on their experience, expertise, and each other. Three major aspects of scholarship emerged: (1) recognizing task difficulty; (2) posing difficult questions; and (3) applying information to other fields. Overall, graduate students welcomed the opportunity to express their knowledge and competencies, showing signs of learning and scholarship.

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Abstract: In Bhutan relatively few studies at the higher education level have been done and fewer still reported in international journals. This pilot study highlights the present practices and culture of teaching and learning at one of the teacher education colleges of the Royal University of Bhutan (RUB). It looks broadly across the issues of teaching/learning practices and identifies ways forward in teaching and learning. It is largely qualitative research based on constructivist principles using the case study design. Multiple methods were used including lesson observations, focus group discussions, questionnaires and interviews to seek answers to the questions of this study. The study found that college lecturers’ behaviors varied between teacher-centered and learner-centered practices. Although lecturers were conversant with many of the concepts of learner-centered pedagogy, there were some grey areas in understanding notably in assessment and evaluation. Planning, implementation and assessment practices were only to some extent congruent with RUB policies and the present situation can be largely understood through a socio-historical analysis as well as the resource base to the teaching and learning approaches and academics’ knowledge and experiences.

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Abstract: Despite the fact that longitudinal data have been compiled over the past 30 years among undergraduate students in higher education settings regarding narcissism, the literature is devoid of empirical investigations that explore the relationships between narcissism and learning. Because the data suggest that narcissism scores are increasing each year among this population, an exploration of the relationship between narcissism and learning is timely and warranted. Sampling from university undergraduate students, this study uses the Narcissistic Personality Inventory, the Big Five Inventory, and the Achievement Goal Questionnaire to verify the known relationships between narcissism and the Big Five personality traits of extraversion and agreeableness; to verify the known relationships between the Big Five personality traits of extraversion and agreeableness and goal orientation; and to explore a previously undocumented empirical relationship between narcissism and performance goal orientation. Results of this exploratory study indicate that while narcissism does contribute to a performance goal orientation, it is not a substantial variable in determining achievement goal orientation in general. The study addresses the implications and limitations of this research in addition to areas for additional investigation.

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2012 - Instruction Article
Holtzman, E., Dukes, T., Page, T.
Views: 438       [1073]
Abstract: Schools need leaders who are prepared to address the complex challenges of the current educational landscape. Questions remain, however, as to the best way to support the development of leaders across disciplines. As graduate educators training new principals, school psychologists and school counselors, a strength afforded is the opportunity to explore the value of shared leadership at the pre- service level. This paper presents a piloted model of interdisciplinary training of graduate students in education to be leaders and change agents committed to culturally responsive positive outcomes in addressing challenging student behavior. The roles and functions of each specific discipline were explored, frames of viewing discipline unpacked and skill development in communicating around emotionally challenging topics provided.

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Abstract: This article presents a retrospective understanding of self-study by re-living a study abroad experience through critical reflection. It will explain and clarify how reflection and self-study of the personal experiences of a graduate student can enhance the meaning of inclusion. This paper begins with a brief conceptualization of self-study, introduces the details of an international study abroad experience, and then systematically explores three distinct phases in the reflective process. The aim is to clarify and explain the value and importance of self-study for graduate students by demonstrating its application. While one side of the coin represents those educators who encourage the reflection process, the other side of the coin represents those students experiencing self-study.

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2012 - Instruction Article
Turner, C., Wood, J., Montoya, Y., Essien Wood, I., Neal, R., Escontrias Jr., G., Coe, A.
Views: 498       [1120]
Abstract: Course content in graduate school is especially important in terms of helping students make progress toward a doctorate. However, content is merely one aspect of developing successful students. This article highlights the value of creating an affirming learning environment by discussing one graduate class on Qualitative Policy Research. The majority of student participants were graduate students of color. The authors discuss the pedagogical approaches guiding this course and outline ways in which the instructor served to create safe spaces that invited as well as validated diverse perspectives and made the research process transparent. These efforts resulted in the production of high quality research used as pilot studies for successful dissertation defenses, accepted presentations at scholarly conferences, and published articles in peer-reviewed journals. Throughout this article, suggestions for replicating a similar course environment are discussed.

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2012 - Instruction Article
Baldwin, A., Koh, E.
Views: 574       [1126]
Abstract: Large first year survey units pose unique challenges to both teachers and learners. Survey units are designed to deliver non-disciplinary specific knowledge about a given subject to a wide audience of learners. However, first year students in these units often find that they are unable to identify the architecture of such units, and are hence uncertain of what they need to take from the course. Employing a mix of qualitative and quantitative data, this article highlights the unique challenges of teaching large survey courses, identifies the causes of anxiety and disengagement amongst learners in such units, and reports on a range of innovative practices that were designed to assuage apprehension and engage first years enrolled in survey courses. It demonstrates how integrating assessment techniques that provide developmental and skills-based feedback, tasks that signpost their performance, and encouraging students to move beyond a surface learning approach can enhance the engagement of the students across large first year survey courses towards the unit material.

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Abstract: Analysis of assessment activities that encourage student engagement and attainment of higher-order cognitive outcomes within Bloom’s Taxonomy (deep learning; Anderson & Krathwohl, 2001) supports greater use of individual and group presentations, research reports, and open-book exams. Consistent with this analysis this paper outlines changes made to the assessment structures of three final-year finance-major courses and details the impact on student engagement and success. It was found that the changed assessment structures were associated with enhanced student engagement, satisfaction and success. It was also found that the changes to the forms of assessment enhanced the development of students’ verbal and written communication abilities and did not detract from the quantitative emphasis required of finance majors.

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As an open-source journal, IJTLHE makes articles freely available. This utility allows you to email the current article to anyone you wish. Simply enter their email address and click on Submit.


2012 - Instruction Article
Lau Bertrand, J., Lee, J.
Views: 542       [1170]
Abstract: This article argues that instructors should adopt a more multicultural perspective when designing syllabi for and teaching undergraduate courses in International Relations (IR). The examination of teaching practices in IR draws on the personal experiences of the authors as foreign natives and instructors of IR at two American universities. The authors examine whether instructors face different challenges when teaching IR to American and foreign undergraduates, and identify the pedagogical challenges of teaching multicultural, globalized and networked students. Suggestions for improving flexibility and balance in IR curricula are provided. In addition, the paper suggests that IR instructors need to be aware of language and cultural barriers in their classrooms, and of differences in students’ understanding of world events and history. The recommendations in this paper for dealing with potential western/American biases in courses might also be of interest to instructors of other subjects.

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