About this paper

Appears in:
Pages: 609-618
Publication year: 2011
ISBN: 978-84-614-7423-3
ISSN: 2340-1079

Conference name: 5th International Technology, Education and Development Conference
Dates: 7-9 March, 2011
Location: Valencia, Spain

A BLENDED LEARNING DIDACTIC MODEL FOR ERGONOMICS INSTRUCTION BASED ON STUDENTS PREFERRED LEARNING STYLES

A. Jackson, L. O'Sullivan

University of Limerick (IRELAND)
Traditionally engineering education is predominately verbal, but many students of engineering courses have a preference for visual instruction. Ergonomics as a discipline is underpinned with a mix of engineering, science and psychological fundamental concepts as a back bone to evaluation and design orientated practice in industry. But higher order learning is often not achieved, if at all, in the classroom environment. Alternatives approaches such as Problem Based Learning offers solutions to this problem but it is resource intensive and not suitable for distance and self directed learning. This presents the problem of informing instructional design for blended learning approaches targeting the acquisition of higher levels of learning specific to ergonomics skills.

According to recent studies engineering Students tend to have a preference for Active, Sensing, Visual, and Sequential learning. These preferences tend to be higher than among the population at large. For example, amongst American high school Students, 60% are reported to be visual dominant learners. For engineering students at university, Zywno (2002) found that between 70% to 90% were visual learners.

The specific purpose of this research was to study the learning styles of ergonomics students who typically comprise a mix of science and engineering. Students, both at undergraduate level and also for industrial workers studying ergonomics as part of a course in health and safety at night.

The study comprised 22 undergraduate students studying physical ergonomics and 24 Safety Practitioners from industry who were studying ergonomics on a health and safety night-time programme. Preferred learning styles were assessed using the Felder Soloman Index of Learning Styles (ILS). While the groups would have comprised quite varying levels of aptitude, a clear trend emerged across the participants indicating a bias towards active learning (68-83%) (versus reflective) intuitive learning 67-100% (versus sensing) visual (50-86%) (versus verbal) and global (66-68%) (versus sequential). These results are used to derive theories for restructuring the delivery of ergonomics instruction.

A didactic model is proposed which will present the right training material in the right format (e-learning, face to face classroom training, wikis, forums, online static content, interactive labs, and so on) to the right people (Ergonomists – students and on the job training), tailored to suit their particular learning styles.
@InProceedings{JACKSON2011ABL,
author = {Jackson, A. and O'Sullivan, L.},
title = {A BLENDED LEARNING DIDACTIC MODEL FOR ERGONOMICS INSTRUCTION BASED ON STUDENTS PREFERRED LEARNING STYLES},
series = {5th International Technology, Education and Development Conference},
booktitle = {INTED2011 Proceedings},
isbn = {978-84-614-7423-3},
issn = {2340-1079},
publisher = {IATED},
location = {Valencia, Spain},
month = {7-9 March, 2011},
year = {2011},
pages = {609-618}}
TY - CONF
AU - A. Jackson AU - L. O'Sullivan
TI - A BLENDED LEARNING DIDACTIC MODEL FOR ERGONOMICS INSTRUCTION BASED ON STUDENTS PREFERRED LEARNING STYLES
SN - 978-84-614-7423-3/2340-1079
PY - 2011
Y1 - 7-9 March, 2011
CI - Valencia, Spain
JO - 5th International Technology, Education and Development Conference
JA - INTED2011 Proceedings
SP - 609
EP - 618
ER -
A. Jackson, L. O'Sullivan (2011) A BLENDED LEARNING DIDACTIC MODEL FOR ERGONOMICS INSTRUCTION BASED ON STUDENTS PREFERRED LEARNING STYLES, INTED2011 Proceedings, pp. 609-618.
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