STUDENT VOICE: IS HONESTY THE BEST POLICY? GIVING STUDENTS CONTROL OF TEL EVALUATIONS

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Education

Published on May 15, 2014

Author: BlackboardInc

Source: slideshare.net

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STUDENT VOICE: IS HONESTY THE BEST POLICY? GIVING STUDENTS CONTROL OF TEL EVALUATIONS
Malcolm Murray, Durham University

The level of technology enhanced learning varies across institutions, both within departments and among individuals. The degree to which learners engage with technology is often reported anecdotally by teaching staff or ‘measured’ through institutional surveys. Neither are really effective in establishing a true picture of institutional practice, in determining how students perceive the efficacy of such technologies or how they impact upon learners’ study habits and practices. This project takes a different approach, placing control firmly in the hands of the students. It gives primacy to their voices in a review of their experiences with technology. It adopts an insider perspective, allowing students to set the agenda and identify issues that they believe we should spend our time looking at. We asked them to interview their peers to solicit examples of best practice and highlight the areas in which we could improve. We hope that his methodological approach will yield an honest appraisal, distinct from any individual module-level evaluation or learning questionnaire that can only ever look at students’ learning experience in isolation. With VLE reporting tools such as Blackboard Analytics now available, higher educational institutions can finally quantify which tools students use. In this study we are interested in finding out if usage statistics correspond with how effective students find these tools and practices. The primary data source is 26 student-led focus groups. The students leading these sessions submit a short 2 page report detailing the take home messages as they understand them from the conversation. Students are encouraged to deviate from the suggested list of questions, allowing them to prioritise issues as they see fit. The results of this project are outlined along with the way we plan to use these findings to inform future strategy and practice.

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