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
2013: Volume 25 Number 3
Reviewers for Issue 25(3)
Craig Abrahamson James Madison University
Claire Aitchison University of Western Sydney
Susanna Calkins Northwestern University
Pete Cannell The Open University in Scotland
Leslie Cramblet Alvarez University of Denver
Peter Daly EDHEC Business School
Clare Dannenberg University of Alaska Anchorage
Denise DeGarmo Southern Illinois University
Martha Gabriel University of Prince Edward Island
Kathleen Gray The University of Melbourne
Lynne Hammann Mansfield University
Charles Hodges Georgia Southern University
David Holliway Washington State University Tri-Cities
Marianne Justus University of Phoenix
Robin Kay UOIT
Tanya Kunberger Florida Gulf Coast University
Laura Levi Altstaedter East Carolina University
Danielle Lusk Virginia Tech
Catherine Manathunga Victoria University Wellington
Kate McConnell American Association of Colleges and Universities
Maung Thein Myint Civil Engineering Dept, New Mexico State University
Kim Niewolny Virginia Tech
Muiris O Laoire Institute of Technology
Mike Radford Canterbury Christ Church University
Sylvia Valentin Niagara University
C. Edward Watson Association of American Colleges and Universities (AAC&U)

2013 - Research Article
Wittek, L., Habib, L.
Views: 1649       [1609]
Abstract: This article focuses on describing the interplay between teaching and learning practices in Higher Education and the disciplinary context of such practices. In particular, it aims to address the question of how course design, teaching, and learning activities take place within a particular academic culture and how those activities mutually shape each other. To do so, we propose to use the notion of mediating actants, a combination of Vygotsky’s (1978) notion of mediation with the concept of “actant” that is at the core of actor-network theory (ANT). We suggest that such a notion can be useful in understanding the processes of construction of teaching and learning within disciplinary discourses and practices. This article is based on an empirical study of three Master’s programs at a Scandinavian institution of higher education. Data was gathered using ethnography-inspired methods such as interviews, observations and document analysis. In our analysis we identified six elements as central in how quality teaching and learning are constituted within master’s programs: (1) the master’s thesis, (2) writing as a mode of thinking (3) the students’ learning environment, (4) the teaching process and teaching style, (5) the students’ conceptions of learning and their engagement, and (6) the processes of transformation from spontaneous to scientific concepts that the students undergo.

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Abstract: While feedback has been highlighted as the most powerful influence on student achievement, Weaver (2006) noted that up to 40% of tertiary students lack confidence in their feedback and many students express dissatisfaction with this aspect of their student experience (Rodway-Dyer, Dunne, & Newcombe, 2009). Chasms remain between academic feedback and student feed forward outputs, as research suggests that feedback is undervalued by “unresponsive” tertiary students due to misunderstanding, inconsistencies and lack of clarity, and that feedback is not as effective as staff imagine. This paper explores student and staff perceptions of a video feedback model for tertiary institutions. Each student received feedback in the form of an individualized video which was made available online, thus mirroring the established course assessment processes. A mixed methodology study revealed a mass preference for video feedback, with participants noting that video feedback personalized assessment processes and enhanced understanding. In excess of 90% of students rated video feedback as more valuable than written feedback, with 74% completely understanding the feedback provided by the marker, showing that technology may “provide the innovative edge that can help students engage more effectively with their feedback” (Crook et al., 2012, p. 387).

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Abstract: A case study of two qualified New Zealand Sign Language interpreters working in a post-secondary education setting in New Zealand was undertaken using both qualitative and quantitative methods. Educational sign language interpreting at the post-secondary level requires a different set of skills and is a reasonably new development in New Zealand. Consequently, there is little information about the experiences of sign language interpreters in post-secondary education. In this study, the participants reported on their own experiences and perceptions of working in this environment. Due to the lack of qualified and trained interpreters in New Zealand, there has not been any specific training for working at this level, and we believe there is a need to address this. This case study helps bridge the gap between theory and professional practice by providing some recommendations to assist post-secondary institutions in meeting their statutory obligations of ensuring equality in education for deaf students through appropriate support of their interpreters.

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Abstract: A university-wide secondary credential program (middle and high school) has engaged in systemic reform through professional development for content faculty to better equip prospective secondary teacher candidates for supporting the academic and social needs of English language learners (ELLs), particularly in urban schools. Data from five years of implementation (2007 to 2012) suggest that faculty across disciplines and colleges enhanced their beliefs, knowledge, and confidence with regard to how ELLs acquire content and academic English language through specific effective methods and strategies. This study suggests that university faculty participation in structured and purposeful professional development can strengthen their preparation of prospective secondary content prospective teachers for working with all students, including ELLs, in diverse secondary classrooms.

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Abstract: This paper describes a collaboration between Mathematics Education and English as a Second Language (ESL) Education programs that presented opportunities for preservice teachers from both programs to work together to address curricular and linguistic gaps that occur for English language learners (ELL) in content area classrooms. By modeling collaboration, facilitating group interactions, and creating authentic field experiences, two faculty members created a space for preservice teachers to practice collaboration and to develop the necessary knowledge, skills, and dispositions to address the educational needs of diverse students. The goals for the students were for them to develop: (1) understanding of their own perspectives and those of the students they teach; (2) observing ELL in mathematics and ESL classes; (3) comparing standards for both programs; (4) identifying gaps in content standards and World-Class Instructional Design and Assessment (WIDA) Can-Do Descriptors (the language ELLs are able to understand and produce in the classroom); (5) planning instruction with support for ELL; (6) working collaboratively to design, implement, and assess the impact of their mathematics lessons for ELL; (7) presenting their projects; and (8) reflecting on their collaborative process in working with a group to complete the project.

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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.


2013 - Instruction Article
Abdelmalak, M., Trespalacios, J.
Views: 596       [1534]
Abstract: The article explores the structure of a graduate educational technology course that used a learnercentered approach to prepare students to be independent responsible learners. Key features of this approach were the balance of power between the instructor and students, involving students in decision-making about their learning, sharing the responsibility for learning between the instructor and students, and using students’ needs and interests in the course content. The article describes how the decision-making power was shared between the instructor and students, as well as how students responded to the course structure. This work has implications for creating learner-centered environments in which power and responsibility are shared between instructor and students in all graduate education courses to nurture the development of responsible learners.

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2013 - Instruction Article
Berger, M., Scott, E., Axe, J., Hawkins, I.
Views: 409       [1536]
Abstract: College and university educators seek to increase student engagement in learning content, skills, and applications. To achieve this goal, we used transformative teaching techniques in the design of a World Challenge: a two-week, group-based, reflective course for sophomores leading their own learning in developing creative solutions to the problem of Health, Hunger, and Humanity. Through indirect guidance by faculty members from multiple disciplines, students led their own learning in small groups to research this global problem and develop local solutions. Given the breadth of the course objectives ranging from applying content to teamwork and productivity, we used a variety of assessment tools: pretest/posttest, rubrics, questionnaires, focus groups, peer assessments, and selfreflections. The data documented increases in content knowledge, and provided formative and summative feedback on engagement and satisfaction to the core faculty members. Student comments at the end of the course suggest the intensive experience was indeed transformative.

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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.


2013 - Instruction Article
Bhandari, N., MacDonald, B., Martin, J., Turner, W., Modena, A., Simmons, J., Asselin, S.
Views: 398       [1602]
Abstract: Professional seminar for doctoral students at a Research I University is a 1-credit course, 2 below the conventional courses. However, the course content covers at least 3 years’ worth of experiences, knowledge, and processes compressed into a single school year. The course typically extends over 16 weeks and 24 actual contact hours with 1 professor to 7 students on average. Assignments expose students to professional jobs in academia, resources available on campus, grant writing procedures, and facilitate the trajectory and purpose of the doctoral process. The purpose of this study is to investigate doctoral students’ narratives on the value they hold for seminar. Findings indicate an overarching theme of value among 5 categories: opportunities, cohort, departmental support, overcoming obstacles, and vested interest.

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Abstract: In this instructional article, we describe a non-traditional course assignment in which we ask students in our social problems courses to write, illustrate, and present a children’s book about a social problem as part of the process of learning. Over the course of the semester, students utilize guided handouts to create a children’s book exploring and explaining a social problem of their choice. Students are asked to explain the social problem, conduct basic research, apply sociological material, and explore possible solutions. Along the way, our students learn to apply the sociological imagination and improve their understanding of how larger social phenomena shape the decisions of individuals. Students also acquire basic research skills and methodological knowledge that follows them throughout their academic career. In our experiences, we find that this fresh, intriguing assignment helps students overcome common barriers to learning about sociology, allows them to invest in their work, and encourages them to employ their own unique skills to create both a quality project and an educational memory.

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Abstract: The mainland Chinese learning culture has evolved due to the rapid changes in the economic, political, cultural and demographic demands. The changing characteristics of the Chinese students’ learning behavioral styles and preferences, as well as the challenges faced in pursuit of Westernbased education, are discussed with suggested recommendations to address these issues. The similarities and differences between Western-based and Chinese education over the decades and at the present are reviewed to enable educators to appreciate a deeper understanding, hence enabling effective facilitation and engagement of students. This enables the usage of a suitable mixture of instructional approaches to facilitate optimal learning process for the students by understanding the learning styles, preferences, and behavioral issues of mainland Chinese students.

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Abstract: Midwifery educators have to provide students with stimulating curricula that teach academic and vocational content, as well as transferable skills. The Research Skills Development (RSD) framework provides a conceptual model that allows educators to explicitly scaffold the development of their students’ research skills. This paper aims to demonstrate the effective use of the RSD framework and constructive alignment theory to redesign a second-year Midwifery assessment task. The assessment task was changed into a scenario-based question to better reflect the unit learning objectives and expected graduate attributes. Students were provided with extra time in class to explore the assessment task in a peer environment. Following the return of their assessments, students were asked to complete a questionnaire to evaluate the effectiveness of the assessment redesign. We show that using a constructively aligned scenario-based assessment task in a second year unit more successfully articulated the expected graduate attributes of midwives. Qualitative and quantitative feedback suggested that students and staff appreciated a more clinically-relevant assessment task. This paper demonstrates that the use of the RSD framework to constructively align graduate attributes, learning experiences, and assessment tasks allows for the transformation of undergraduate assessment into a learning experience relevant to clinical practice.

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Abstract: This paper presents an innovative teaching technique, the utilization of a popular sitcom to teach an introductory economics course. Using clips from the television show Seinfeld, instructors can present the oft-perceived difficult, yet basic, economic concepts in an amenable manner, which also enables the achieving of higher levels of learning as per Bloom’s taxonomy. Many higher education institutions require an economics course as part of the general education curriculum. These courses typically tend to have high rates of failure relative to other required general education classes. One pedagogical tool to improve pass rates is to use Seinfeld Economics. A typical assignment based on an episode is provided in the appendix to further help adopt this pedagogical tool.

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