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Thursday, June 19 • 10:30am - 11:20am
CON4.09 – Messy Problems and Deep Learning (Room A342)

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The aim of this paper is to explore the benefits and weaknesses of the use of Information and Communication Technology (ICT) in education. Discussion will be mainly based on theoretical studies on some of the consequences of the use of ICT, such as accessibility, interest of students and ICT professional development offered to professors, as well as on a case studies based on issues in Military and Veteran Health Research, a webinar taught every fall term by more than 15 different lecturers to graduate students from across Canada. 

 E-learning is the realization of a world where distance education provides access to high quality education to those students who would not normally have this access for several reasons, including geographical problems or scheduling challenges. Whereas technologies enable accessibility to knowledge, insuring  the technological competence of professors and motivation of students (Villar et al., 2006) is yet to be achieved.  In order to solve this problem, some argue that programmers, technicians and instructors using e-learning should put less emphasis on the technologies than on the content, in order to address students’ need of educational curriculum (The Information Revolution, 2003). Maintaing student’s interest and retention can also pose a problem: studies have identified that the low motivation among students arises from the lack of sense of belongingness to a community of learners.  It has been suggested that technologies should incorporate online icebreakers (Dixon, 2006) and create 3D learning spaces to mimic the dynamic of a classroom (IsaBelle et al., 2006) to create a sense of belonging for online learners and to reach out all types of learners, both intrinsic and extrinsic.

The aim of this paper is to evaluate the distance between the implementation of high quality e-learning using ICT and the degree of its realization, through the study of some targeted issues: accessibility of information, training of professors, and student motivation. To give some practical dimension to these reflections, different venues suggested by researchers who created real-life experiments in order to overcome these problems will also be explored. A case study will be used as a live example in order to assess the effectiveness of a multimedia approach to distance learning. Effectiveness of a multimedia approach to distance learning will be assessed based on a questionnaire measured by the assessment of the motivation of students when undertaking this webinar, as well as on their perception of the usefulness of the tools used during the semester.

Thursday June 19, 2014 10:30am - 11:20am
A342 McArthur Hall

Attendees (7)