About this paper

Appears in:
Pages: 4929-4936
Publication year: 2014
ISBN: 978-84-617-0557-3
ISSN: 2340-1117

Conference name: 6th International Conference on Education and New Learning Technologies
Dates: 7-9 July, 2014
Location: Barcelona, Spain

SCAFFOLDING THE LEARNING JOURNEY THROUGH COMBINING ONLINE VIDEO AND INTERACTIVE TESTS TO SCAFFOLD LEARNERS' PROGRESS ACROSS THE THRESHOLD CONCEPTS OF A MINORITY LANGUAGE (IRISH)

C. Dawson

University College Cork (IRELAND)
How can we ensure our students are accessing the appropriate material in the sequence necessary to make deep learning happen? How can we be certain that they are not simply glossing over core elements and threshold concepts which are vital to acquiring a deep understanding of their courses in the expectation that they can fill in the blanks later? How can we prevent the limitation of their learning by their subsequent reliance on their naive understanding of these core/threshold concepts as they progress through the various stages of their courses? In this paper I wish to outline how an analysis of errors in the morphology of the noun phrase of the Irish language revealed gaps in the students’ internalisation of core concepts, resulting from their having failed to engage fully with the learning material at an earlier stage. I intend to outline how I have begun to scaffold the learners’ journey using online tests in combination with video feedback and Blackboard Learn’s Adaptive Release. I will also outline my belief that the same approach is applicable across a wide range of disciplines, beyond language learning.

Students are participating in a two-year part-time diploma in Applied Irish Language in University College Cork, Ireland. In addition to four face-to-face modules, they must take two online modules on the History of Irish as an Applied Language and Irish Language in the Contempory World. The course is taught using a wide range of online technologies including Blackboard Learn, GoogleApps and Youtube.

We are now coming towards the end of the second cohort of students who have had the online modules. Initially, feedback was delivered in the form of written emails, responses in online debates and comments in shared documents. As the course progressed I began to reinforce the feedback with online exercises using Blackboard Learn’s test tool. This received a favourable response from the students, who requested more of the same. In the leadup to the final examination and due to my growing concern that they still hadn’t fully grasped the morphology of the noun, I used Panopto© to record a series of five short lectures: beginning with the generic definition of the noun and building up to the various forms of initial mutation that can be applied to the noun in Irish (one of the more challenging aspects of the Irish language). Each lecture is accompanied by an online test which must be successfully completed in order to progress to the next lecture, thus ensuring that the students’ naïve understanding of core knowledge and threshold concepts is challenged.

From the teacher's perspective, the ease of integration of the various software and hardware, combined with the modern web user's acceptance of less than industry standard video production, all make for an instant means of answering students' questions and responding to their weaknesses in a dynamic online environment.

Due to the fact that the excercises were not part of the summative assessment of the course it was left to the students' own discretion whether to engage or not. This had the result of giving me a control group who didn't engage in the exercise. Having monitored all students' progress the results show a marked improvement in the understanding among the students who engaged with the exercise in comparison with both their own previous performances and the performances of the control group. Feedback from students on the initiative has also been positive.
@InProceedings{DAWSON2014SCA,
author = {Dawson, C.},
title = {SCAFFOLDING THE LEARNING JOURNEY THROUGH COMBINING ONLINE VIDEO AND INTERACTIVE TESTS TO SCAFFOLD LEARNERS' PROGRESS ACROSS THE THRESHOLD CONCEPTS OF A MINORITY LANGUAGE (IRISH)},
series = {6th International Conference on Education and New Learning Technologies},
booktitle = {EDULEARN14 Proceedings},
isbn = {978-84-617-0557-3},
issn = {2340-1117},
publisher = {IATED},
location = {Barcelona, Spain},
month = {7-9 July, 2014},
year = {2014},
pages = {4929-4936}}
TY - CONF
AU - C. Dawson
TI - SCAFFOLDING THE LEARNING JOURNEY THROUGH COMBINING ONLINE VIDEO AND INTERACTIVE TESTS TO SCAFFOLD LEARNERS' PROGRESS ACROSS THE THRESHOLD CONCEPTS OF A MINORITY LANGUAGE (IRISH)
SN - 978-84-617-0557-3/2340-1117
PY - 2014
Y1 - 7-9 July, 2014
CI - Barcelona, Spain
JO - 6th International Conference on Education and New Learning Technologies
JA - EDULEARN14 Proceedings
SP - 4929
EP - 4936
ER -
C. Dawson (2014) SCAFFOLDING THE LEARNING JOURNEY THROUGH COMBINING ONLINE VIDEO AND INTERACTIVE TESTS TO SCAFFOLD LEARNERS' PROGRESS ACROSS THE THRESHOLD CONCEPTS OF A MINORITY LANGUAGE (IRISH), EDULEARN14 Proceedings, pp. 4929-4936.
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