1 Vrije Universiteit Brussel (BELGIUM)
2 Mountains of the Moon University (UGANDA)
About this paper:
Appears in: INTED2017 Proceedings
Publication year: 2017
Pages: 4228-4238
ISBN: 978-84-617-8491-2
ISSN: 2340-1079
doi: 10.21125/inted.2017.1011
Conference name: 11th International Technology, Education and Development Conference
Dates: 6-8 March, 2017
Location: Valencia, Spain
This study aimed at examining the perceptions of learners and lecturers regarding the pedagogical benefits of audio media as a medium of instruction for distance teaching and learning. In this study, audio media refers to the use of interactive live radio lectures supplemented by podcasts. In this medium of instruction, distance students had no direct contact with their instructors. All lectures were delivered through the radio. No modules or any other handouts in form of printed materials were given to the learners, revision was only done by listening to recorded lectures which were uploaded on the Moodle platform. Whereas, many studies have been done on the use of audio media in distance teaching and learning, no study has been carried out that, combines live radio lectures and podcasts as an independent medium of instruction. The previous studies focused on the use of radio teaching and podcasts as a supplement to conventional teaching. Conventional method of instruction has had its own challenges and setbacks. Mainly concerns have been raised on the limited time for face to face interaction between learners and lecturers. This calls for a convenient, affordable and flexible intervention and thus a need for this study. The opinions of academic staff and learners regarding instructional benefits of audio media in distance teaching and learning needed to be investigated before rolling out the instructional methodology. Degree students on distance programme from School of Education and School of Health Sciences (n=81) and lecturers (n=41) involved in distance teaching were asked to fill a questionnaire intended to investigate their opinions on the use of audio media as a medium of instruction. Prior to filling the questionnaire and attending audio media classes, both students and academic staff received orientation through workshops on how to use audio media in distance teaching and learning. The selection of the sampled participants was purposive; only those under the distance education programme and with access to portable media devices (PMD) such as laptop computers, and other MP3 players were included in the study. Data was analyzed by the use of descriptive statistics and Mann-whitney u test. Generally, results obtained show that, learners perceive audio media as a valuable medium of instruction. There were no significant differences in terms of perception between urban and rural students. No gender differences were found in terms of their perceptions. However, there were differences between the two Schools, where Public Health students appeared more positive than education students regarding the use of audio media. The results also showed that, majority of the teachers have a positive opinion regarding audio media as a medium of instruction. Differences were identified in terms of perception based on University teaching experience. Teachers with more than 10 years’ experience were more positive regarding the use of audio media compared to teachers with less than 2 years university teaching experience. These results indicate that, audio media as a medium of instruction is considered possible, relevant and pedagogically beneficial in the resource poor environment.
Audio media, Pedagogical benefits, distance teaching, perceptions.