IN PURSUIT OF MEANINGFUL LEARNING EXPERIENCES
1 CEOS.P.PORTO (PORTUGAL)
2 ISCAP/P.PORTO (PORTUGAL)
About this paper:
Conference name: 14th annual International Conference of Education, Research and Innovation
Dates: 8-9 November, 2021
Location: Online Conference
Abstract:Meaningfulness has been identified as a fundamental driver for learning. At a time when online, b-learning and mixed pedagogical methods are being normalized within the educational context, re-examining the factors associated with significant learning may be determinant to learning and teaching success. Which pedagogical variables lead to a stronger learning process? To deeper and longer-lasting learning? To a pleasant and satisfying learning process and outcome?
This paper presents a qualitative study, which analyses the factors attributed to positive and negative learning experiences in higher education, as well as factors perceived as influencing successful learning experiences by higher education students. The information was collected through a questionnaire with 8 open-ended questions. Data were treated by an inductive content analysis method within an emergent categorisation procedure. The was composed of 1365 registration units, resulting from 205 participants attending or who have attended higher education in the last 2 years. The research team developed a first category structure which was presented in a pedagogical forum, and this paper presents the final version of the analytical categorisation process.
Dynamic, practical and experiential learning were the factors most often attributed to a satisfying learning process, while the existence of a purpose and the attribution of a meaning were perceived as the factors that most promoted successful learning. A mismatch between the pedagogical options and the profile of the students arised, on the other hand, as the most determinant factor for negative learning experiences - both in terms of satisfaction and of success achieved.
Keywords: Meaningful learning, higher education, pedagogical methods, learning experience.