About this paper

Appears in:
Pages: 31-40
Publication year: 2013
ISBN: 978-84-616-3822-2
ISSN: 2340-1117

Conference name: 5th International Conference on Education and New Learning Technologies
Dates: 1-3 July, 2013
Location: Barcelona, Spain

DESIGNING LEARNER-CENTERED – A CHALLENGING BUT REWARDING EXPERIENCE FROM AN EXTRA-OCCUPATIONAL MASTER PROGRAM

D. López

Leuphana University of Lüneburg (GERMANY)
A shift from teacher-centered (instructivist) to learner-centered (constructivist) approaches has being noticed in many educational organizations, such as universities, around the world. This shift may be directly related to two aspects: the great deal of pressure those organizations have on providing quality learning and assuring quality-learning outcomes; and the ever-growing expectations students have when enrolling in a university for gaining further qualifications.
When those high expectations are not met, then teaching and learning practices need to be evaluated in depth. This was the case of an MBA course from an extra-occupational Master Program at the Leuphana University of Lüneburg, where more than 90% of the students expressed dissatisfaction with a course, claiming being either over- or under challenged.

Even though discontinuing the before mentioned course seemed to be the quickest reaction and the safest decision to make, another plausible option was undertaken: re-designing the course. By now, this course is an example of best teaching practice.

Any course in a learning program needs to be considered as a new project with its own cycle each time it is offered. Teachers need to develop an awareness of students’ previous experience and knowledge on a topic, their interests and needs, and use this information strategically for planning tailored learning experiences. At the same time teachers are required to create strategies in order to encourage students to engage and get actively involved in their own learning process.

After an in-depth course evaluation it was possible to identify the concrete causes of students’ inconformity and so proceed to re-design the course. This contribution presents the didactical concept of the re-designed course. The concept followed a learner-centered approach and was carried out in a Blended-learning mode. Collaboration, sharing and construction of knowledge among the learners were encouraged by the potentials of communication technology and its publishing capabilities.

Through this case study it becomes evident that an ongoing course evaluation is crucial for coping with learners’ expectations, also the design of flexible didactic concepts contribute to the sustainability of the course itself. Moreover, if we aim at designing learning experiences that require a high degree of engagement and commitment from learners’ side, it is necessary to put learners and their learning needs in the foreground.
@InProceedings{LOPEZ2013DES2,
author = {L{\'{o}}pez, D.},
title = {DESIGNING LEARNER-CENTERED – A CHALLENGING BUT REWARDING EXPERIENCE FROM AN EXTRA-OCCUPATIONAL MASTER PROGRAM},
series = {5th International Conference on Education and New Learning Technologies},
booktitle = {EDULEARN13 Proceedings},
isbn = {978-84-616-3822-2},
issn = {2340-1117},
publisher = {IATED},
location = {Barcelona, Spain},
month = {1-3 July, 2013},
year = {2013},
pages = {31-40}}
TY - CONF
AU - D. López
TI - DESIGNING LEARNER-CENTERED – A CHALLENGING BUT REWARDING EXPERIENCE FROM AN EXTRA-OCCUPATIONAL MASTER PROGRAM
SN - 978-84-616-3822-2/2340-1117
PY - 2013
Y1 - 1-3 July, 2013
CI - Barcelona, Spain
JO - 5th International Conference on Education and New Learning Technologies
JA - EDULEARN13 Proceedings
SP - 31
EP - 40
ER -
D. López (2013) DESIGNING LEARNER-CENTERED – A CHALLENGING BUT REWARDING EXPERIENCE FROM AN EXTRA-OCCUPATIONAL MASTER PROGRAM, EDULEARN13 Proceedings, pp. 31-40.
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