About this paper

Appears in:
Pages: 2337-2340
Publication year: 2017
ISBN: 978-84-617-8491-2
ISSN: 2340-1079
doi: 10.21125/inted.2017.0673

Conference name: 11th International Technology, Education and Development Conference
Dates: 6-8 March, 2017
Location: Valencia, Spain

TACKLING CLASSROOM APATHY AMONG UNDERGRADUATE STUDENTS IN A DEVELOPING WORLD CONTEXT AT PWANI UNIVERSITY

A. Mbogho, J. Hassanali

Pwani University (KENYA)
Educational practice can be seen as a continuum which has seen steady evolution over the years from chalk and board, to overhead projectors and transparencies, to data projectors and PowerPoint presentations, and now we have e-learning and the digital classroom. This evolution, however, is not being experienced at the same rate everywhere, and it has brought with it a widening of the educational gap between developed and developing countries or the rich and poor within the same country. The use of information and communication technologies (ICTs) in education is becoming more and more common, and is thought to hold the key to education that is learner centered. But ICTs come at a cost and require an enabling environment. For instance, they are of little use unless there is electricity and internet access, both of which remain expensive and unreliable in the poorer parts of the world. It is, therefore, necessary for educators in such environments to develop teaching methods that can work without advanced technologies.

In this abstract, we point out some of the problems faced in a developing environment by teachers and learners, and we offer some possible solutions based on our own teaching experiences at Pwani University in Kilifi, Kenya.

Our students often appear to lack motivation and initiative and only expect to receive learning, rather than be active participants in the construction of their own knowledge. We have noticed a mismatch between what is taught and what is learnt, what is said and what is heard, and what is displayed and what is seen. Extreme timidity is prevalent among our students, so that they rarely ask or answer questions, or they do so very softly. Student-teacher interaction in the classroom is minimal.

We suspect that the classroom environment may be further impeding access between teacher and student. For example, in some of our classrooms, the desks are fixed and do not allow free movement for the teacher to go between the rows. However, in others there are movable chairs which can be set up for tutorial teaching.

We pose the following question: What types of methods would be effective in teaching the type of students we have at Pwani University? What sorts of activities can enhance student engagement without advanced educational technologies?

We have found the following techniques to be helpful:
1. Make the students repeat a concept verbally or in writing
2. The teacher repeats a concept many times
3. Posing a multiple choice question and conducting a poll to gauge the level of preparedness. This is a sort of basic classroom response system (CSR), but without the computer technology usually associated with such systems, for example, clickers.
4. Make the students copy a diagram instead of just seeing it displayed
5. Make them work out a problem on their own and then guide them in reasoning through it afterwards
6. Work out a problem on the board with their assistance
7. Doing the assignment in the classroom rather than at home where they might copy-paste from the internet

The evidence we have gathered in support of these techniques is anecdotal. We intend to conduct a proper scientific study to evaluate these methods’ effectiveness in increasing student engagement and depth of learning.
@InProceedings{MBOGHO2017TAC,
author = {Mbogho, A. and Hassanali, J.},
title = {TACKLING CLASSROOM APATHY AMONG UNDERGRADUATE STUDENTS IN A DEVELOPING WORLD CONTEXT AT PWANI UNIVERSITY},
series = {11th International Technology, Education and Development Conference},
booktitle = {INTED2017 Proceedings},
isbn = {978-84-617-8491-2},
issn = {2340-1079},
doi = {10.21125/inted.2017.0673},
url = {http://dx.doi.org/10.21125/inted.2017.0673},
publisher = {IATED},
location = {Valencia, Spain},
month = {6-8 March, 2017},
year = {2017},
pages = {2337-2340}}
TY - CONF
AU - A. Mbogho AU - J. Hassanali
TI - TACKLING CLASSROOM APATHY AMONG UNDERGRADUATE STUDENTS IN A DEVELOPING WORLD CONTEXT AT PWANI UNIVERSITY
SN - 978-84-617-8491-2/2340-1079
DO - 10.21125/inted.2017.0673
PY - 2017
Y1 - 6-8 March, 2017
CI - Valencia, Spain
JO - 11th International Technology, Education and Development Conference
JA - INTED2017 Proceedings
SP - 2337
EP - 2340
ER -
A. Mbogho, J. Hassanali (2017) TACKLING CLASSROOM APATHY AMONG UNDERGRADUATE STUDENTS IN A DEVELOPING WORLD CONTEXT AT PWANI UNIVERSITY, INTED2017 Proceedings, pp. 2337-2340.
User:
Pass: