STUDENT ANXIETY, ENGAGEMENT AND THE STUDY OF RESEARCH METHODS AND STATISTICS
University Campus Suffolk (UNITED KINGDOM)
About this paper:
Conference name: 8th International Conference on Education and New Learning Technologies
Dates: 4-6 July, 2016
Location: Barcelona, Spain
Abstract:Research has shown that the degree to which students engage with their subject has a direct bearing on both the level of learning and overall satisfaction with the teaching/learning experience. However, the nature of engagement itself is not an easy term to define. Engagement does not, for example, imply a single activity but rather it is a generic term characterized by active participation and collaborative involvement. Furthermore, engagement includes a complex mix of the relationship between teacher and student. Educators frequently and consistently complain that students do not engage with the topic, yet, responsibility for engagement must surely rest equally on the shoulders of the teacher in terms of presenting style and enthusiasm for the subject. These issues are compounded when students feel unusually high levels of anxiety regarding the subject matter as is often the case with the study of research methods and especially of statistics. This paper will explore the nature and mechanism of student engagement, the specific issues that they have with regard to the study of research methods in social sciences, and to highlight where possible, how lecturers can modify behaviors and practices that encourage student disengagement.
Keywords: Student engagement, research methods, anxiety.