About this paper

Appears in:
Pages: 3102-3107
Publication year: 2015
ISBN: 978-84-608-2657-6
ISSN: 2340-1095

Conference name: 8th International Conference of Education, Research and Innovation
Dates: 18-20 November, 2015
Location: Seville, Spain

DEEP AND SURFACE LEARNERS: AN INQUIRY INVOLVING A GROUP OF FUTURE ENGINEER STUDENTS

L. Ciascai1, I. Ciascai2

1Babes-Bolyai University (ROMANIA)
2Technical University of Cluj (ROMANIA)
Background:
Surface and deep learning are two concepts related with the quality of learning. They are named by Marton and Säljö (1976), Ramsden (1992), Entwistle (1981), Biggs (1987, 1993) as ”approaches to learning”.
In the surface learning approach the acquisition of knowledge is made by repeating and rote learning. Surface learning concentrates on details; so it does not offer to the learner a systemic perspective on the topic or study material.
Deep learning concerns the understanding, applying and transfer of the new knowledge. It also supposes to put in relation the new knowledge with the prior ones and with knowledge having the source in everyday life experience of learner. Deep learning also means to check and use evidence, to build a complete perspective on a study topic and to make learning more meaningfully. Practicing deep learning a person understands and retains new knowledge for a longer period of time (Hermida, 2014).

Method and Results:
This paper describes the results of an inquiry about the preferred approach of learning of 45 third year students from Technical University of Cluj-Napoca. The used instrument was a questionnaire with 20 items prepared by Dahms (after Hans Peter Christensen, 2005).
The "analysis of the respondents" answers show they don’t distinguish correctly all characteristics of deep learning (they confuse two characteristics). Unconscious of these confusions most of the future engineers identify themselves as deep learners.
After the completion of the questionnaire, the respondents were asked to identify changes on their way of learning. A part of the respondents refers to group or pair learning, to a deeper concentration in the process of learning, to the necessity to learn systematically (during the semester and not only in session/evaluation period). There are also students who are pleased about their way of learning.

Discussion and Conclusion:
Some subjects had noticed the relation between the approach to learning and the perception about the task, showing interest in critical reflection:
“Deep and surface learning approaches are used by students depending
on their perception of the task being completed. Students may, in fact,
swap from one approach to another according to the demands of the
task.” (Wee, Sep 8 2010).

It should be noted that respondents do not have systematic theoretical and practical knowledge in the field of deep learning. As a result, we believe that in addition to training for teaching career, followed by those who want to become teachers, all students have to receive advice and training in the field of deep learning.
@InProceedings{CIASCAI2015DEE,
author = {Ciascai, L. and Ciascai, I.},
title = {DEEP AND SURFACE LEARNERS: AN INQUIRY INVOLVING A GROUP OF FUTURE ENGINEER STUDENTS},
series = {8th International Conference of Education, Research and Innovation},
booktitle = {ICERI2015 Proceedings},
isbn = {978-84-608-2657-6},
issn = {2340-1095},
publisher = {IATED},
location = {Seville, Spain},
month = {18-20 November, 2015},
year = {2015},
pages = {3102-3107}}
TY - CONF
AU - L. Ciascai AU - I. Ciascai
TI - DEEP AND SURFACE LEARNERS: AN INQUIRY INVOLVING A GROUP OF FUTURE ENGINEER STUDENTS
SN - 978-84-608-2657-6/2340-1095
PY - 2015
Y1 - 18-20 November, 2015
CI - Seville, Spain
JO - 8th International Conference of Education, Research and Innovation
JA - ICERI2015 Proceedings
SP - 3102
EP - 3107
ER -
L. Ciascai, I. Ciascai (2015) DEEP AND SURFACE LEARNERS: AN INQUIRY INVOLVING A GROUP OF FUTURE ENGINEER STUDENTS, ICERI2015 Proceedings, pp. 3102-3107.
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