Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México (UNAM) (MEXICO)
About this paper:
Appears in: EDULEARN16 Proceedings
Publication year: 2016
Pages: 2826-2831
ISBN: 978-84-608-8860-4
ISSN: 2340-1117
doi: 10.21125/edulearn.2016.1612
Conference name: 8th International Conference on Education and New Learning Technologies
Dates: 4-6 July, 2016
Location: Barcelona, Spain
The advantages of blended-learning have been well documented. A critical component of a blended-learning strategy is a Learning Management System (LMS) because it allows the teacher to direct the students’ activities and track their advances. However not all the institutions have the resources to develop learning objects that may be used on a daily basis nor are they aware of how to fully exploit LMS’s to the best of their capabilities; in fact, in many occasions a LMS is used as a local repository of digital resources even though they are not designed for that purpose. In this regard, it is important to work towards building institutional and even national repositories for digital content and to develop open-access learning ecosystems. Thus, in this paper we describe a structure that has been used for teaching a Heat Transfer course (at the undergraduate level) under a blended learning strategy, that may be used as a model to build an ecosystem based on open access repositories and LMS´s. It consists of three elements:
1) a freely-available LMS (in our case, Moodle) which served as a link between the students and course materials;
2) a curricula-based index (Red Univeristaria de Aprendizaje, RUA) that resides at our university but it is open-access; and
3) a repository of learning resources which is also open access. The materials in the repository are: learning activities, transport phenomena simulators and lectures.

In addition to serve as a model to build institutional ecosystems to support blended-learning, the structure described in the paper has the added advantage that any external university or institute can freely access the resources from a local LMS. It should be emphasized that the use of an LMS to direct the course activities and follow the students’ progress is very important and, therefore, prospective teachers must be aware of this point.

As an example of the advantages that the proposed structure may offer, in the paper we present the analysis of the relationship between usage statistics and the final grade obtained by students that were enrolled in the course last semester.
Open access repositories, Learning Management Systems, Red Univeristaria de Aprendizaje, RUA.