Next Issue
Previous Issue

Table of Contents

Educ. Sci., Volume 8, Issue 1 (March 2018)

  • Issues are regarded as officially published after their release is announced to the table of contents alert mailing list.
  • You may sign up for e-mail alerts to receive table of contents of newly released issues.
  • PDF is the official format for papers published in both, html and pdf forms. To view the papers in pdf format, click on the "PDF Full-text" link, and use the free Adobe Readerexternal link to open them.
View options order results:
result details:
Displaying articles 1-38
Export citation of selected articles as:
Open AccessArticle Code-Switching Explorations in Teaching Early Number Sense
Educ. Sci. 2018, 8(1), 38; https://doi.org/10.3390/educsci8010038
Received: 31 January 2018 / Revised: 21 February 2018 / Accepted: 15 March 2018 / Published: 20 March 2018
PDF Full-text (222 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
New semiotic perspectives about the role of language in mathematics education indicate that teachers have a fundamental role in communicating and teaching the language that carries mathematical meaning. However, little is known about how educators of young children understand and use the language
[...] Read more.
New semiotic perspectives about the role of language in mathematics education indicate that teachers have a fundamental role in communicating and teaching the language that carries mathematical meaning. However, little is known about how educators of young children understand and use the language of mathematics. This study addresses this void. Supported by the understanding that mathematics has its own language (Pimm, 1987), the study focuses on code switching—the mixing of words from two languages—by educators as they shift between the language of instruction and the language of mathematics. A qualitative multiple case study approach utilizing discourse analysis was used to explore three early years teachers’ math talk. Findings indicate that these educators code-switched to the mathematics register when they talked about numbers, number words and counting, to revoice students’ ideas, to explain students’ and teachers’ actions, to provide new math information, and when they chose between two terms that belonged to the math register. Findings also demonstrated that educators preferred to avoid the use of the mathematics’ register and relied instead on what the educators called “familiar language.” Findings further indicated the presence of semantic patterns between perceptual terms and the mathematics register. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Early Childhood Education)
Open AccessArticle Comparison of Loneliness and Social Skill Levels of Children with Specific Learning Disabilities in Terms of Participation in Sports
Educ. Sci. 2018, 8(1), 37; https://doi.org/10.3390/educsci8010037
Received: 11 January 2018 / Revised: 1 March 2018 / Accepted: 14 March 2018 / Published: 16 March 2018
PDF Full-text (215 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
This study was conducted in order to compare loneliness and social skill levels of children with specific learning disabilities in terms of participation in sports. For this study, a screening model was used. The study group was composed of 56 children who were
[...] Read more.
This study was conducted in order to compare loneliness and social skill levels of children with specific learning disabilities in terms of participation in sports. For this study, a screening model was used. The study group was composed of 56 children who were aged between 7 and 14 years and diagnosed with a specific learning disability (30 boys and 26 girls). “Personal Information Form”, “Children’s Loneliness Scale”, “Matson Evaluation of Social Skills with Youngsters (MESSY)” were used in this study. For the data processes and data analyses, SPSS 22 was used. According to the test of normality, non-parametric tests were employed for those data that did not follow a normal distribution and the correlations among variables were tested with correlation analysis at p < 0.05 while differences among variables were tested with Mann–Whitney U and Kruskal–Wallis tests at p < 0.05. According to the findings obtained in this study, there were no significant differences in terms of sex, the number of family members and the number of brothers and sisters while there were significant correlations in terms of age, sports status, MESSY-subscales and loneliness. In sum, it may be concluded that sports played a positive role in social skill and loneliness levels among children with specific learning disabilities. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Valorization of Physical Education)
Open AccessArticle Optimal Weighting for Exam Composition
Educ. Sci. 2018, 8(1), 36; https://doi.org/10.3390/educsci8010036
Received: 4 January 2018 / Revised: 10 February 2018 / Accepted: 1 March 2018 / Published: 9 March 2018
PDF Full-text (1056 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
A problem faced by many instructors is that of designing exams that accurately assess the abilities of the students. Typically, these exams are prepared several days in advance, and generic question scores are used based on rough approximation of the question difficulty and
[...] Read more.
A problem faced by many instructors is that of designing exams that accurately assess the abilities of the students. Typically, these exams are prepared several days in advance, and generic question scores are used based on rough approximation of the question difficulty and length. For example, for a recent class taught by the author, there were 30 multiple choice questions worth 3 points, 15 true/false with explanation questions worth 4 points, and 5 analytical exercises worth 10 points. We describe a novel framework where algorithms from machine learning are used to modify the exam question weights in order to optimize the exam scores, using the overall final score as a proxy for a student’s true ability. We show that significant error reduction can be obtained by our approach over standard weighting schemes, i.e., for the final and midterm exam, the mean absolute error for prediction decreases by 90.58% and 97.70% for linear regression approach respectively resulting in better estimation. We make several new observations regarding the properties of the “good” and “bad” exam questions that can have impact on the design of improved future evaluation methods. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Artificial Intelligence and Education)
Figures

Figure 1

Open AccessArticle Distance Learning—Predictions and Possibilities
Educ. Sci. 2018, 8(1), 35; https://doi.org/10.3390/educsci8010035
Received: 30 December 2017 / Revised: 12 February 2018 / Accepted: 1 March 2018 / Published: 8 March 2018
PDF Full-text (232 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Education systems, educational institutions and educational professions, including those of distance learning, can often be inward-looking, backward-looking and self-referential, meaning that they are often fixated on their own concerns, values and processes. In many respects, this is necessary and valuable but the topic
[...] Read more.
Education systems, educational institutions and educational professions, including those of distance learning, can often be inward-looking, backward-looking and self-referential, meaning that they are often fixated on their own concerns, values and processes. In many respects, this is necessary and valuable but the topic of challenges and future trends in distance learning is an opportunity to explore the place of distance learning in a wider world where cultures and ideologies clash, where education and employment are no longer stable and secure, where universities and colleges are under unprecedented pressures, where the technologies and trends of educational technology represent a crowded and chaotic space and where a critical examination of distance learning is necessary to underpin its methods and its mission. This paper addresses in essence three questions, firstly, is the distance learning community clear about the definition and purpose of its work, secondly, what are global political, economic and technological pressures on the institutions of higher education delivering distance learning, and thirdly, what do typical innovations and trends in educational technology signify for distance learning? These are linked questions and the answers constitute challenging predictions and possibilities. The nature of these questions means there are no simple answers only a more complete understanding of a fluid, partial and complex environment within which education, including distance learning, cannot operate in ignorance or isolation. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Challenges and Future Trends of Distance Learning)
Open AccessArticle Comparison of Workload for University Core Courses Taught in Regular Semester and Time-Compressed Term Formats
Educ. Sci. 2018, 8(1), 34; https://doi.org/10.3390/educsci8010034
Received: 9 February 2018 / Revised: 23 February 2018 / Accepted: 24 February 2018 / Published: 7 March 2018
PDF Full-text (868 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
This study compared student workload and perceived value of coursework assigned for a matching set of semester and term general education courses at Brigham Young University. Statistically significant differences in workloads were found between most semester and term courses. While term workloads were
[...] Read more.
This study compared student workload and perceived value of coursework assigned for a matching set of semester and term general education courses at Brigham Young University. Statistically significant differences in workloads were found between most semester and term courses. While term workloads were slightly lighter in general, both could be called “university lite,” in that students did not spend the expected two hours outside of class per hour in class. Math and physics courses came closest to meeting the expected workloads, which tended to remain constant between semesters and terms. Differences in the value students reported for homework varied significantly by the autonomy of the instructor to adapt his own course section. Some of the curricular differences between sessions might be attributed to efficiencies instructors incorporated for shorter sessions without affecting overall course quality. Typically, reading- and writing-intensive courses showed the most negative impact when offered in a term format. The findings from this study suggest that, while some subjects lend themselves well to a compressed-time format, not all courses are suited to being taught in this way. Full article
Figures

Figure 1

Open AccessArticle The Higher Education Act and Minority Serving Institutions: Towards a Typology of Title III and V Funded Programs
Educ. Sci. 2018, 8(1), 33; https://doi.org/10.3390/educsci8010033
Received: 29 January 2018 / Revised: 28 February 2018 / Accepted: 1 March 2018 / Published: 5 March 2018
PDF Full-text (252 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
To date, there has been little analysis of MSI Title III and V grant-funded programs across all MSI categories. For researchers, practitioners, and policymakers, it is imperative to explore the contributions of MSIs as manifested in Title III and V grant-funded programs. The
[...] Read more.
To date, there has been little analysis of MSI Title III and V grant-funded programs across all MSI categories. For researchers, practitioners, and policymakers, it is imperative to explore the contributions of MSIs as manifested in Title III and V grant-funded programs. The purpose of this study is to analyze MSI Title III and V programs based on project abstracts. This study is driven by three research questions: How have MSIs used their Title III and V grants? What are the expressed outcomes of MSI grant funding? Using restricted-use data obtained from the U.S. Department of Education, NCES IPEDS, and the Office of Postsecondary Education, this study uses a quantitative content analysis strategy to respond to the research questions in ways that can help stakeholders begin to understand the impact of the federal grant on MSIs. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Understanding the Rich Context of Minority Serving Institutions)
Open AccessArticle Pathways to the Professoriate: The Experiences of First-Generation Latino Undergraduate Students at Hispanic Serving Institutions Applying to Doctoral Programs
Educ. Sci. 2018, 8(1), 32; https://doi.org/10.3390/educsci8010032
Received: 26 January 2018 / Revised: 14 February 2018 / Accepted: 21 February 2018 / Published: 2 March 2018
PDF Full-text (214 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Despite representing the largest ethnic minority group in the United States, Latinos remain underrepresented in the professoriate. Although Latinos are increasingly attending college, fewer graduate and even fewer continue to pursue graduate school. Prior research has explained the challenges that first-generation college students
[...] Read more.
Despite representing the largest ethnic minority group in the United States, Latinos remain underrepresented in the professoriate. Although Latinos are increasingly attending college, fewer graduate and even fewer continue to pursue graduate school. Prior research has explained the challenges that first-generation college students encounter in post-secondary contexts. Given that Latino college students are likely to be first-generation, understanding the experiences of first-generation Latino undergraduate students who aspire to be professors and are applying to graduate school can help illuminate what factors help support this underrepresented group in pursuing a career in the academy. Using qualitative approaches, this study describes the experiences of 15 first-generation undergraduate Latino students in a grant funded academic program that provides them with a plethora of resources to help prepare them for graduate school applications. The findings suggest how early exposure to information about applying to graduate school, access to role models, familial support and understanding of an academic career and having a community of peers with similar ambitions can help cultivate an environment where first-generation, Latino students remain inspired and committed to pursuing graduate school in efforts to become a professor. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Understanding the Rich Context of Minority Serving Institutions)
Open AccessArticle Efficient Use of Clickers: A Mixed-Method Inquiry with University Teachers
Educ. Sci. 2018, 8(1), 31; https://doi.org/10.3390/educsci8010031
Received: 12 December 2017 / Revised: 9 February 2018 / Accepted: 14 February 2018 / Published: 1 March 2018
PDF Full-text (244 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
With the advancement of information technology and policies encouraging interactivities in teaching and learning, the use of students’ response system (SRS), commonly known as clickers, has experienced substantial growth in recent years. The reported effectiveness of SRS has varied. Based on the framework
[...] Read more.
With the advancement of information technology and policies encouraging interactivities in teaching and learning, the use of students’ response system (SRS), commonly known as clickers, has experienced substantial growth in recent years. The reported effectiveness of SRS has varied. Based on the framework of technological-pedagogical-content knowledge (TPACK), the current study attempted to explore the disparity in efficiency of adopting SRS. A concurrent mixed method design was adopted to delineate factors conducive to efficient adoption of SRS through closed-ended survey responses and qualitative data. Participants were purposefully sampled from diverse academic disciplines and backgrounds. Seventeen teachers from various disciplines (i.e., tourism management, business, health sciences, applied sciences, engineering, and social sciences) at the Hong Kong Polytechnic University formed a teacher focus group for the current study. In the facilitated focus group, issues relating to efficient use of clickers, participants explored questions on teachers’ knowledge on various technologies, knowledge relating to their subject matters, methods and processes of teaching, as well as how to integrate all knowledge into their teaching. The TPACK model was adopted to guide the discussions. Emergent themes from the discussions were extracted using NVivo 10 for Windows, and were categorized according to the framework of TPACK. The survey, implemented on an online survey platform, solicited participants on teachers’ knowledge and technology acceptance. The close-ended survey comprised 30 items based on the Technological Pedagogical Content Knowledge (TPACK) framework and 20 items based on the Unified Theory of Acceptance and Use of Technology (UTAUT). Participating teachers concurred with the suggestion that use of clickers is instrumental in engaging students in learning and assessing formative students’ progress. Converging with the survey results, several major themes contributing to the successful implementation of clickers, namely technology, technological-pedagogical, technological-content, technological-pedagogical-content knowledge, were identified from the teacher focus groups. The most and second most frequently cited themes were technological-pedagogical-content Knowledge and the technological knowledge respectively. Findings from the current study triangulated with previous findings on TPACK and use of clickers, particularly, the influence of technological-pedagogical-content Knowledge and technological knowledge on successful integration of innovations in class. Furthermore, the current study highlighted the impact of technological-pedagogical and technological-content knowledge for further research to unfold technology adoption with these featured TPACK configurations, as well as rendering support to frontline academics related to integration of technology and pedagogy. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Collaborative Learning with Technology—Frontiers and Evidence)
Open AccessArticle Motivations and Paths to Becoming Faculty at Minority Serving Institutions
Educ. Sci. 2018, 8(1), 30; https://doi.org/10.3390/educsci8010030
Received: 26 January 2018 / Revised: 20 February 2018 / Accepted: 21 February 2018 / Published: 27 February 2018
PDF Full-text (217 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Drawing upon 15 qualitative interviews with early- to mid-career faculty (seven men and eight women) at Minority Serving Institutions (MSIs), this study examines the diverse motivations and paths those faculty members have taken to becoming professors at their respective institutions. The faculty come
[...] Read more.
Drawing upon 15 qualitative interviews with early- to mid-career faculty (seven men and eight women) at Minority Serving Institutions (MSIs), this study examines the diverse motivations and paths those faculty members have taken to becoming professors at their respective institutions. The faculty come from a range of MSIs (Historically Black Colleges and Universities, Hispanic Serving Institutions, Asian American and Native American Pacific Islander Serving Institutions, and Predominantly Black Institutions) across the country and represent a broad spectrum of disciplines. This study sheds light on factors that guide their choices of discipline and entrance into the faculty ranks at MSIs. Social cognitive career theory (SCCT) was used as a lens during qualitative coding and analysis in order to develop the findings, which reveal that (1) teaching, activism, and community uplift were primary motivators to enter the professoriate; (2) supportive environmental factors, including single individuals, proved pivotal in influencing faculty to take these roles; and (3) career transitions into the academy were spurred by learning experiences that revealed disciplinary and teaching interests. The findings suggest that MSIs attract community-oriented individuals to their faculty positions, and that colleges and universities interested in diversifying their faculties should craft such roles in ways that are appealing to the populations that they are trying to recruit and retain. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Understanding the Rich Context of Minority Serving Institutions)
Open AccessArticle Evaluating a Novel Instructional Sequence for Conceptual Change in Physics Using Interactive Simulations
Educ. Sci. 2018, 8(1), 29; https://doi.org/10.3390/educsci8010029
Received: 5 February 2018 / Revised: 21 February 2018 / Accepted: 22 February 2018 / Published: 27 February 2018
PDF Full-text (774 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
This study investigated the effectiveness of a novel inquiry-based instructional sequence using interactive simulations for supporting students’ development of conceptual understanding, inquiry process skills and confidence in learning. The study, conducted in Beijing, involved two teachers and 117 students in four classes. The
[...] Read more.
This study investigated the effectiveness of a novel inquiry-based instructional sequence using interactive simulations for supporting students’ development of conceptual understanding, inquiry process skills and confidence in learning. The study, conducted in Beijing, involved two teachers and 117 students in four classes. The teachers participated in professional learning and were supported in enacting one of two different instructional approaches the Interactive Simulations Instructional Approach (ISIA) (experimental group) or conventional instruction (control group). Each student group completed pre-tests and post-tests, and classroom observations were conducted to ensure that the implementation of the intervention was consistent. Our findings reveal that students in the ISIA group demonstrated significantly greater gains in conceptual understanding, inquiry process skills and confidence in learning than their peers in the conventional instruction group. Neither students’ sex nor their levels of academic achievement showed main effects on students’ achievement in any of the three outcome types (understanding, skill, confidence). This study demonstrates that the combination of interactive simulations and inquiry-based learning can enhance the development of students’ conceptual understanding, inquiry process skills and confidence in learning. Full article
Figures

Figure 1

Open AccessArticle Job Satisfaction among Secondary-School-Heads: A Gender Based-Comparative Study
Educ. Sci. 2018, 8(1), 28; https://doi.org/10.3390/educsci8010028
Received: 16 January 2018 / Revised: 20 February 2018 / Accepted: 21 February 2018 / Published: 27 February 2018
PDF Full-text (468 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
The purpose of the study was to examine and compare the job satisfaction of male and female secondary-school heads in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, Pakistan. All the male and female secondary-school heads working in pubic secondary schools of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa constituted the population of the
[...] Read more.
The purpose of the study was to examine and compare the job satisfaction of male and female secondary-school heads in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, Pakistan. All the male and female secondary-school heads working in pubic secondary schools of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa constituted the population of the study. A total sample of 402 secondary-school heads was selected through multistage sampling technique in which 260 were males and 142 were females. Descriptive and quantitative research design was used. A standardized tool (i.e., “Minnesota Satisfaction Questionnaire” (MSQ)) was used for data collection. For statistical analysis, proper descriptive statistics (i.e., mean and standard deviation) and inferential statistics (i.e., independent samples t-test) were employed. The findings revealed that secondary-school heads were found dissatisfied with ability utilization, advancement, education policies and practices, creativity, compensation, supervision (HR), supervision (technical), and working conditions. There was no significant difference between the job satisfaction of male and female secondary-school heads with respect to overall intrinsic as well as extrinsic factors. Based on these findings, it was recommended that productive and effective measures should to be taken by the Ministry of Education Khyber Pakhtunkhwa to maintain and strengthen the employees’ level of satisfaction at each level. The Ministry of Education should devise compelling, productive, and effective education policies that are promising to the employees’ prosperity and organizational productivity. Full article
Figures

Figure 1

Open AccessArticle Assessing Conceptual Understanding via Literacy-Infused, Inquiry-Based Science among Middle School English Learners and Economically-Challenged Students
Educ. Sci. 2018, 8(1), 27; https://doi.org/10.3390/educsci8010027
Received: 26 December 2017 / Revised: 18 January 2018 / Accepted: 6 February 2018 / Published: 20 February 2018
PDF Full-text (2852 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
The overarching purpose of our study was to compare performances of treatment and control condition students who completed a literacy-infused, inquiry-based science intervention through sixth grade as measured by a big idea assessment tool which we refer to as the Big Ideas in
[...] Read more.
The overarching purpose of our study was to compare performances of treatment and control condition students who completed a literacy-infused, inquiry-based science intervention through sixth grade as measured by a big idea assessment tool which we refer to as the Big Ideas in Science Assessment (BISA). First, we determine the concurrent validity of the BISA; second, we investigate the differences in the post-test of the BISA between treatment and control English Learners (ELs), controlling for their performance in the pre-test; third, we analyze the differences in the post-test of the BISA between treatment and control non-ELs, controlling for their performance in the pre-test; and fourth, we examine the relationship between students’ English language proficiency as measured by standardized assessment, and their performance in the BISA among ELs and non-ELs, respectively. Our findings indicate: (a) literacy-infused science lessons with big ideas, implemented through the tested intervention, improved students’ language acquisition and science concept understanding for ELs and economically challenged students (ECs); (b) there was a positive relationship between language and content for both ELs and non-ELs, with a similar magnitude, suggesting that students with a higher level of English proficiency score higher in science assessment; and (c) the lesson plans prepared were successful for promoting a literacy-infused science curriculum via a 5E Model (Engage, Explore, Explain, Elaborate, and Evaluate) that includes three to five of the Es used daily. A pedagogical approach for a literacy-infused science model with big ideas is proposed. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Science Education)
Figures

Figure 1

Open AccessArticle Teaching Management System with Applications of RFID and IoT Technology
Educ. Sci. 2018, 8(1), 26; https://doi.org/10.3390/educsci8010026
Received: 9 January 2018 / Revised: 7 February 2018 / Accepted: 7 February 2018 / Published: 11 February 2018
Cited by 2 | PDF Full-text (2818 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Currently, Internet of Things (IoT) technologies are used in many areas, such as intelligent transportation, smart city, hospital, games, education. Earlier interactive response system uses infrared or radio frequency (RF) wireless communication technologies to transmit the students’ answer to teachers’ managerment system, where
[...] Read more.
Currently, Internet of Things (IoT) technologies are used in many areas, such as intelligent transportation, smart city, hospital, games, education. Earlier interactive response system uses infrared or radio frequency (RF) wireless communication technologies to transmit the students’ answer to teachers’ managerment system, where there exists high cost, inconvenient usage, difficult deployment. How to use IoT to improve the quality of higher education becomes a very important topic in the researh area of teaching. Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) is one of key technologies to implement IoT applications, and most of universities use the High Frequency (HF) RFID card as the students’ identification devices in China. In this paper, a kind of WiFi supported RFID reader (WiRF) is implemented using open source hardware platforms, such as Node MCU and RFID-RC522. Then the proposed WiRF system is used to assist teacher to perform automatic attendance record and students’ behavior record. In addition, Quick Response (QR) code is another technology to enable IoT. In this paper, QR code is designed to quickly access course video and perform real-time interactive response in the classroom, which will provide multidimensional learning and strengthen the motivation of students’ learning. This IoT system can improve the attendance of students, and give a positive impact on students’ learning process for higher education. Full article
Figures

Figure 1

Open AccessArticle The Flipped MOOC: Using Gamification and Learning Analytics in MOOC Design—A Conceptual Approach
Educ. Sci. 2018, 8(1), 25; https://doi.org/10.3390/educsci8010025
Received: 30 November 2017 / Revised: 5 February 2018 / Accepted: 6 February 2018 / Published: 11 February 2018
PDF Full-text (495 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text | Supplementary Files
Abstract
Recently, research has highlighted the potential of Massive Open Online Courses (MOOCs) for education, as well as their drawbacks, which are well known. Several studies state that the main limitations of the MOOCs are low completion and high dropout rates of participants. However,
[...] Read more.
Recently, research has highlighted the potential of Massive Open Online Courses (MOOCs) for education, as well as their drawbacks, which are well known. Several studies state that the main limitations of the MOOCs are low completion and high dropout rates of participants. However, MOOCs suffer also from the lack of participant engagement, personalization, and despite the fact that several formats and types of MOOCs are reported in the literature, the majority of them contain a considerable amount of content that is mainly presented in a video format. This is in contrast to the results reported in other educational settings, where engagement and active participation are identified as success factors. We present the results of a study that involved educational experts and learning scientists giving new and interesting insights towards the conceptualization of a new design approach, the flipped MOOC, applying the flipped classroom approach to the MOOCs’ design and making use of gamification and learning analytics. We found important indications, applicable to the concept of a flipped MOOC, which entails turning MOOCs from mainly content-oriented delivery machines into personalized, interactive, and engaging learning environments. Our findings support the idea that MOOCs can be enriched by the orchestration of a flipped classroom approach in combination with the support of gamification and learning analytics. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Challenges and Future Trends of Distance Learning)
Figures

Figure 1

Open AccessArticle Socially Challenged Collaborative Learning of Secondary School Students in Singapore
Educ. Sci. 2018, 8(1), 24; https://doi.org/10.3390/educsci8010024
Received: 29 September 2017 / Revised: 30 January 2018 / Accepted: 31 January 2018 / Published: 6 February 2018
PDF Full-text (665 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Using a grounded theory research design, this paper examined the collaborative learning experiences of secondary school students in Singapore. The core phenomenon that emerged was the need for social interactions in collaborative learning, both in classroom and online settings. Educators often take for
[...] Read more.
Using a grounded theory research design, this paper examined the collaborative learning experiences of secondary school students in Singapore. The core phenomenon that emerged was the need for social interactions in collaborative learning, both in classroom and online settings. Educators often take for granted that effective collaborative learning will occur naturally once students are assigned to work in groups. In examining students’ dissatisfaction when working in groups, this study highlighted the importance of surfacing these hidden assumptions for careful scrutiny. The key factors identified were centered on the need to address social challenges within collaborative learning. These included a pragmatic, results-oriented approach with limited interpersonal engagement used by students that can compromise collaborative learning outcomes. Having a deeper understanding of the challenges that resulted from limited social interactions provides educators with insights when designing classroom and online learning activities. This paper contributes to the understanding of groups’ active learning to inform pedagogical practices for educators engaged in designing better collaborative learning experiences. Educators and curriculum designers need to be aware of the social drawbacks in collaborative learning in order to design a more socially engaging learning environment. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Collaborative Learning with Technology—Frontiers and Evidence)
Figures

Figure 1

Open AccessArticle Efficacy of Multimedia Learning Modules as Preparation for Lecture-Based Tutorials in Electromagnetism
Educ. Sci. 2018, 8(1), 23; https://doi.org/10.3390/educsci8010023
Received: 26 January 2018 / Revised: 31 January 2018 / Accepted: 1 February 2018 / Published: 3 February 2018
Cited by 1 | PDF Full-text (554 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
We have investigated the efficacy of on-line, multimedia learning modules (MLMs) as preparation for in-class, lecture-based tutorials in electromagnetism in a physics course for natural science majors (biology and marine science). Specifically, we report the results of a multiple-group pre/post-test research design comparing
[...] Read more.
We have investigated the efficacy of on-line, multimedia learning modules (MLMs) as preparation for in-class, lecture-based tutorials in electromagnetism in a physics course for natural science majors (biology and marine science). Specifically, we report the results of a multiple-group pre/post-test research design comparing two groups receiving different treatments with respect to activities preceding participation in Tutorials in Introductory Physics. The different pre-tutorial activities were as follows: (1) students were assigned reading from a traditional textbook, followed by a traditional lecture; and (2) students completed on-line MLMs developed by the Physics Education Research Group at the University of Illinois at Urbana Champaign (UIUC), and commercially known as FlipItPhysics. The MLM treatment group earned significantly higher mid-term examination scores and larger gains in content knowledge as measured by the Conceptual Survey of Electricity and Magnetism (CSEM). Student attitudes towards “reformed” instruction in the form of active-engagement tutorials were also improved. Specifically, post-course surveys showed that MLM-group students believed class time was more effective and the instructor was more clear than reported by non-MLM students, even though there was no significant difference between groups with respect to in-class activities and the same instructor taught both groups. MLM activities can be a highly effective tool for some student populations, especially when student preparation and buy-in are important for realizing significant gains. Full article
Figures

Figure 1

Open AccessEditorial Flipped Classroom Research: From “Black Box” to “White Box” Evaluation
Educ. Sci. 2018, 8(1), 22; https://doi.org/10.3390/educsci8010022
Received: 25 January 2018 / Revised: 28 January 2018 / Accepted: 28 January 2018 / Published: 31 January 2018
Cited by 2 | PDF Full-text (284 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
The flipped (or inverted) classroom model has gained increasing interest among university teachers in recent years. In the flipped classroom approach, students are encouraged to watch short video lectures as preparation for class, and classroom time is dedicated to more active forms of
[...] Read more.
The flipped (or inverted) classroom model has gained increasing interest among university teachers in recent years. In the flipped classroom approach, students are encouraged to watch short video lectures as preparation for class, and classroom time is dedicated to more active forms of learning. In this editorial, we provide a thumbnail sketch of the origins and concept of the flipped classroom followed by a summary of the contributions to this special issue, which highlight the importance of considering a range of individual as well as contextual factors when implementing and evaluating the flipped classroom approach. Based on this observation, we propose and briefly discuss realist evaluation as a promising approach to evaluating educational interventions and for advancing our theoretical understanding of the flipped classroom. We argue that realist evaluation provides an analytical framework for posing the next generation of questions about the flipped classroom and we encourage scholars to address the questions: “How or why does the flipped classroom work, for whom, and in what circumstances?” Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue The Flipped Classroom in Higher Education: Research and Practice)
Figures

Figure 1

Open AccessArticle Distance Learning and Assistance Using Smart Glasses
Educ. Sci. 2018, 8(1), 21; https://doi.org/10.3390/educsci8010021
Received: 30 November 2017 / Revised: 23 January 2018 / Accepted: 25 January 2018 / Published: 27 January 2018
Cited by 1 | PDF Full-text (7115 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
With the everyday growth of technology, new possibilities arise to support activities of everyday life. In education and training, more and more digital learning materials are emerging, but there is still room for improvement. This research study describes the implementation of a smart
[...] Read more.
With the everyday growth of technology, new possibilities arise to support activities of everyday life. In education and training, more and more digital learning materials are emerging, but there is still room for improvement. This research study describes the implementation of a smart glasses app and infrastructure to support distance learning with WebRTC. The instructor is connected to the learner by a video streaming session and gets the live video stream from the learner’s smart glasses from the learner’s point of view. Additionally, the instructor can draw on the video to add context-aware information. The drawings are immediately sent to the learner to support him to solve a task. The prototype has been qualitatively evaluated by a test user who performed a fine-motor-skills task and a maintenance task under assistance of the remote instructor. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Challenges and Future Trends of Distance Learning)
Figures

Figure 1

Open AccessArticle In-Place Training: Optimizing Rural Health Workforce Outcomes through Rural-Based Education in Australia
Educ. Sci. 2018, 8(1), 20; https://doi.org/10.3390/educsci8010020
Received: 5 December 2017 / Revised: 16 January 2018 / Accepted: 17 January 2018 / Published: 24 January 2018
PDF Full-text (410 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
The medical workforce shortfall in rural areas is a major issue influencing the nature of undergraduate medical education in Australia. Exposing undergraduates to rural life through rural clinical school (RCS) placements is seen as a key strategy to address workforce imbalances. We investigated
[...] Read more.
The medical workforce shortfall in rural areas is a major issue influencing the nature of undergraduate medical education in Australia. Exposing undergraduates to rural life through rural clinical school (RCS) placements is seen as a key strategy to address workforce imbalances. We investigated the influence of an extended RCS placement and rural origin on the rural principal place of practice (PPP) of the first 3 graduate cohorts (2012–2014) from a Joint Medical Program offered by two universities based in northern New South Wales. Data was available for 426 eligible graduates. Participation in an extended RCS placement (odds ratio (OR), 6.075, 95% confidence interval (CI) 2.716–13.591), rural background (OR 3.613, 95% CI 1.752–7.450) and being 25 years or older at completion of a medical degree (OR 2.550, 95% CI 1.252–5.194) were all independently associated with rural PPP. Being bonded into a program to practice rurally was not associated with rural PPP. Participation in an extended RCS placement is strongly associated with rural practice in the first 3 to 5 years of practice for graduates from both rural and metropolitan backgrounds. This finding indicates that strategies to improve the rural workforce should focus on the promotion of rural placements, in addition to rural background. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Health Professional Education: Responding to Population Health Needs)
Figures

Figure 1

Open AccessArticle Sciencey Girls: Discourses Supporting Working-Class Girls to Identify with Science
Educ. Sci. 2018, 8(1), 19; https://doi.org/10.3390/educsci8010019
Received: 30 November 2017 / Revised: 23 December 2017 / Accepted: 6 January 2018 / Published: 23 January 2018
PDF Full-text (253 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Women from working class and some ethnic minority backgrounds continue to be underrepresented in science, particularly in areas such as physical sciences and engineering. Many find it difficult to see science as something that is “for them”, which then has implications for their
[...] Read more.
Women from working class and some ethnic minority backgrounds continue to be underrepresented in science, particularly in areas such as physical sciences and engineering. Many find it difficult to see science as something that is “for them”, which then has implications for their learning and participation in science. In this paper, I discuss findings from a U.K.-based qualitative study with 15 working-class girls, aged 11 to 13, from diverse ethnic backgrounds. Data were collected over the course of one academic year, through interviews and discussion groups with the girls and interviews with their science teachers, and analysed through a post-structural gender lens. The paper foregrounds five science-identifying girls, who negotiated their identification and engagement with science through the following discursive strategies: (i) rendering gender invisible, (ii) drawing attention to the presence of women in science, (iii) reframing “science people” as caring and nurturing, and (iv) cultural discourses of desirability of science. The findings contribute to the understanding of how working class girls—who are often “othered” and constructed as “unintelligible” within the dominant discursive regime of prototypical science—find identification with science possible. The paper discusses the affordances and challenges of each discursive strategy. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Science Education)
Open AccessFeature PaperArticle Systematic Design and Rapid Development of Motion-Based Touchless Games for Enhancing Students’ Thinking Skills
Educ. Sci. 2018, 8(1), 18; https://doi.org/10.3390/educsci8010018
Received: 1 December 2017 / Revised: 15 January 2018 / Accepted: 18 January 2018 / Published: 22 January 2018
PDF Full-text (5035 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
During the last few years, there has been a growing interest in students getting engaged in digital game-making activities so as to enhance their thinking skills. The findings of studies that have examined the impact of such initiatives are quite positive, especially concerning
[...] Read more.
During the last few years, there has been a growing interest in students getting engaged in digital game-making activities so as to enhance their thinking skills. The findings of studies that have examined the impact of such initiatives are quite positive, especially concerning the promotion of 21st century skills; however, many students seem to face difficulties in getting a deeper understanding of the game development life cycle. Additionally, students often have difficulties in meaningfully reusing and applying the concepts from various subjects, mainly mathematics and physics, into their game-making tasks or in understanding advanced programming commands while creating their games. The present study presents an innovative game-making teaching approach that suggests a series of steps for the systematic design and rapid development of motion-based touchless games, i.e., games that are based on natural user interaction technologies, like the Microsoft Kinect camera. Findings from evaluation studies in two (2) secondary schools indicate that this approach can increase student motivation, strengthen their computational thinking, enhance their understanding of geometric principles and improve their social skills. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Challenges and Future Trends of Distance Learning)
Figures

Figure 1

Open AccessArticle QuarkNet: A Unique and Transformative Physics Education Program
Educ. Sci. 2018, 8(1), 17; https://doi.org/10.3390/educsci8010017
Received: 29 December 2017 / Revised: 12 January 2018 / Accepted: 15 January 2018 / Published: 19 January 2018
PDF Full-text (443 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
The QuarkNet Collaboration has forged nontraditional relationships among particle physicists, high school teachers, and their students. QuarkNet centers are located at 50+ universities and labs across the United States and Puerto Rico. We provide professional development for teachers and create opportunities for teachers
[...] Read more.
The QuarkNet Collaboration has forged nontraditional relationships among particle physicists, high school teachers, and their students. QuarkNet centers are located at 50+ universities and labs across the United States and Puerto Rico. We provide professional development for teachers and create opportunities for teachers and students to engage in particle physics data investigations and join research teams. Students develop scientific knowledge and habits of mind by working alongside scientists to make sense of the world using authentic experimental data. Our program is based on a classroom vision where teaching strategies emulate closely the way scientists build knowledge through scientific and engineering practices. Program outcomes show that student engagement in research and masterclasses does develop an understanding of the process of scientific discovery and science. Teachers provide classroom environments that model scientific discovery and science practices and take advantage of opportunities to expand their involvement in the profession of science teaching. We describe success factors that enhance local center programs, and discuss important benefits of the program that flow on to the university faculty. Full article
Figures

Figure 1

Open AccessArticle Engineering Attractiveness in the European Educational Environment: Can Distance Education Approaches Make a Difference?
Educ. Sci. 2018, 8(1), 16; https://doi.org/10.3390/educsci8010016
Received: 30 October 2017 / Revised: 23 December 2017 / Accepted: 15 January 2018 / Published: 18 January 2018
Cited by 1 | PDF Full-text (869 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
The recent phenomenon of worldwide declining enrolments in engineering-related degrees has led to the gradual decrease in the number of engineering graduates. This decrease occurs at a time of increasing demand in the labour market for highly qualified engineers, who are necessary for
[...] Read more.
The recent phenomenon of worldwide declining enrolments in engineering-related degrees has led to the gradual decrease in the number of engineering graduates. This decrease occurs at a time of increasing demand in the labour market for highly qualified engineers, who are necessary for the implementation of fundamental societal functions. This paper initially presents a survey of practices, which are currently employed by academic institutions in Europe in order to increase the attractiveness of their engineering studies. It then provides a detailed analysis of the benefits and proliferation of distance education to increase attractiveness of engineering studies based on a set of interviews. Results of this study, highlight a lack of a distance-learning dimension in the implementation of engineering studies in the European Area and discusses in detail ways in which distance learning can be utilised in engineering studies for the benefit of increasing their attractiveness. It has also been noted that institutions employing distance learning as part of their engineering studies, see this as highly beneficial for their students but also for the academic institution itself with some reservations in terms of the pedagogical adequacy of materials and instructional approaches used in distance education courses. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Teaching and Learning in STEM Education)
Figures

Graphical abstract

Open AccessConference Report Improving Communicative Competence through Synchronous Communication in Computer-Supported Collaborative Learning Environments: A Systematic Review
Educ. Sci. 2018, 8(1), 15; https://doi.org/10.3390/educsci8010015
Received: 30 September 2017 / Revised: 8 January 2018 / Accepted: 10 January 2018 / Published: 18 January 2018
PDF Full-text (503 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Computer-supported collaborative learning facilitates the extension of second language acquisition into social practice. Studies on its achievement effects speak directly to the pedagogical notion of treating communicative practice in synchronous computer-mediated communication (SCMC): real-time communication that takes place between human beings via the
[...] Read more.
Computer-supported collaborative learning facilitates the extension of second language acquisition into social practice. Studies on its achievement effects speak directly to the pedagogical notion of treating communicative practice in synchronous computer-mediated communication (SCMC): real-time communication that takes place between human beings via the instrumentality of computers in forms of text, audio and video communication, such as live chat and chatrooms as socially-oriented meaning construction. This review begins by considering the adoption of social interactionist views to identify key paradigms and supportive principles of computer-supported collaborative learning. A special focus on two components of communicative competence is then presented to explore interactional variables in synchronous computer-mediated communication along with a review of research. There follows a discussion on a synthesis of interactional variables in negotiated interaction and co-construction of knowledge from psycholinguistic and social cohesion perspectives. This review reveals both possibilities and disparities of language socialization in promoting intersubjective learning and diversifying the salient use of interactively creative language in computer-supported collaborative learning environments in service of communicative competence. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Collaborative Learning with Technology—Frontiers and Evidence)
Figures

Figure 1

Open AccessEditorial Acknowledgement to Reviewers of Education Sciences in 2017
Educ. Sci. 2018, 8(1), 14; https://doi.org/10.3390/educsci8010014
Received: 16 January 2018 / Accepted: 16 January 2018 / Published: 16 January 2018
PDF Full-text (346 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Peer review is an essential part in the publication process, ensuring that Education Sciences maintains high quality standards for its published papers.[...] Full article
Open AccessArticle ‘Sometimes They Are Fun and Sometimes They Are Not’: Concept Mapping with English Language Acquisition (ELA) and Gifted/Talented (GT) Elementary Students Learning Science and Sustainability
Educ. Sci. 2018, 8(1), 13; https://doi.org/10.3390/educsci8010013
Received: 1 November 2017 / Revised: 29 December 2017 / Accepted: 6 January 2018 / Published: 15 January 2018
PDF Full-text (1589 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
This study presents an ‘education for sustainability’ curricular model which promotes science learning in an elementary classroom through equity pedagogy. A total of 25 fourth-grade students from an urban, public school in Denver, Colorado participated in this mixed-methods study where concept maps were
[...] Read more.
This study presents an ‘education for sustainability’ curricular model which promotes science learning in an elementary classroom through equity pedagogy. A total of 25 fourth-grade students from an urban, public school in Denver, Colorado participated in this mixed-methods study where concept maps were used as a tool for describing and assessing students’ understanding of ecosystem interactions. Concept maps provide a more holistic, systems-based assessment of science learning in a sustainability curriculum. The concept maps were scored and analyzed using SPSS to investigate potential differences in learning gains of English Language Acquisition (ELA) and Gifted/Talented (GT) students. Interviews were conducted after the concept maps were administered, then transcribed and inductively coded to generate themes related to science learning. Interviews also encouraged students to explain their drawings and provided a more accurate interpretation of the concept maps. Findings revealed the difference between pre- and post-concept map scores for ELA and GT learners were not statistically significant. Students also demonstrated an increased knowledge of ecosystem interactions during interviews. Concept maps, as part of an education for sustainability curriculum, can promote equity by providing diverse learners with different—yet equally valid—outlets to express their scientific knowledge. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Science Education)
Figures

Figure 1

Open AccessArticle Teaching and Learning Science in the 21st Century: Challenging Critical Assumptions in Post-Secondary Science
Educ. Sci. 2018, 8(1), 12; https://doi.org/10.3390/educsci8010012
Received: 5 November 2017 / Revised: 4 January 2018 / Accepted: 6 January 2018 / Published: 12 January 2018
Cited by 1 | PDF Full-text (183 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
It is widely agreed upon that the goal of science education is building a scientifically literate society. Although there are a range of definitions for science literacy, most involve an ability to problem solve, make evidence-based decisions, and evaluate information in a manner
[...] Read more.
It is widely agreed upon that the goal of science education is building a scientifically literate society. Although there are a range of definitions for science literacy, most involve an ability to problem solve, make evidence-based decisions, and evaluate information in a manner that is logical. Unfortunately, science literacy appears to be an area where we struggle across levels of study, including with students who are majoring in the sciences in university settings. One reason for this problem is that we have opted to continue to approach teaching science in a way that fails to consider the critical assumptions that faculties in the sciences bring into the classroom. These assumptions include expectations of what students should know before entering given courses, whose responsibility it is to ensure that students entering courses understand basic scientific concepts, the roles of researchers and teachers, and approaches to teaching at the university level. Acknowledging these assumptions and the potential for action to shift our teaching and thinking about post-secondary education represents a transformative area in science literacy and preparation for the future of science as a field. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Science Education)
Open AccessArticle Teachers’ Thoughts on Student Decision Making During Engineering Design Lessons
Educ. Sci. 2018, 8(1), 9; https://doi.org/10.3390/educsci8010009
Received: 31 October 2017 / Revised: 3 December 2017 / Accepted: 9 January 2018 / Published: 11 January 2018
PDF Full-text (188 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
In this paper, I share the results of a study of teachers’ ideas about student decision-making at entry into a professional development program to integrate engineering into their instruction. The framework for the Engineering Design Process (EDP) was based on a Challenge-Based Learning
[...] Read more.
In this paper, I share the results of a study of teachers’ ideas about student decision-making at entry into a professional development program to integrate engineering into their instruction. The framework for the Engineering Design Process (EDP) was based on a Challenge-Based Learning (CBL) model. The EDP embedded within the CBL model suggests teachers should provide opportunities for students to make decisions throughout the design process. The differentiation consolidation decision-making framework was used to understand the decision-making process. Study data was gathered from 16 teacher participants, interviewed and surveyed at entry into the program. The data were analyzed to understand the kinds of decision-making activities the teachers’ identified as possible for students to make based on eleven engineering design scenarios and the teachers’ current use of, and confidence in applying, lessons that engaged students in decision-making. The results indicated the teachers most frequently identified students that engaged in stage one decisions-making activities, i.e., problem identification and clarification. When the teachers discussed stage two and stage three decision-making activities, they most frequently discussed general problem solving or design process type activities with little differentiation of specific details of how the decision-making was to take place. In addition, in most cases teachers did not mention teaching or supporting student decision-making strategies. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Teaching and Learning in STEM Education)
Open AccessConcept Paper Designing and Implementing an Assistive Technology Lab for Postsecondary Education
Educ. Sci. 2018, 8(1), 11; https://doi.org/10.3390/educsci8010011
Received: 30 November 2017 / Revised: 29 December 2017 / Accepted: 9 January 2018 / Published: 11 January 2018
PDF Full-text (2095 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
A literature review discusses how teacher knowledge of assistive technology significantly impacts student success with assistive technology and that many teachers enter the field feeling unprepared to implement these technologies with students. This article explores one university’s process in setting up an assistive
[...] Read more.
A literature review discusses how teacher knowledge of assistive technology significantly impacts student success with assistive technology and that many teachers enter the field feeling unprepared to implement these technologies with students. This article explores one university’s process in setting up an assistive technology laboratory for students to explore. Such experiential learning opportunities are vital to the success of special education educators. This paper explores how the lab is set up and the activities visitors complete to provide a foundation for those looking to develop a similar lab. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Technology Enhancing the Skills of Students with Disabilities)
Figures

Figure 1

Open AccessArticle Enhancing Pre-Service Special Educator Preparation through Combined Use of Virtual Simulation and Instructional Coaching
Educ. Sci. 2018, 8(1), 10; https://doi.org/10.3390/educsci8010010
Received: 30 December 2017 / Revised: 7 January 2018 / Accepted: 9 January 2018 / Published: 11 January 2018
PDF Full-text (643 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
To meet the ever-increasing teaching standards, pre-service special educators need extensive and advanced opportunities for pedagogical preparation prior to entering the classroom. Providing opportunities for pre-service special educators to practice such strategies within a virtual simulation environment offers teacher preparation programs a way
[...] Read more.
To meet the ever-increasing teaching standards, pre-service special educators need extensive and advanced opportunities for pedagogical preparation prior to entering the classroom. Providing opportunities for pre-service special educators to practice such strategies within a virtual simulation environment offers teacher preparation programs a way to individualize the teaching and practice of various pedagogical aspects needed when new educators enter their first classroom. Coupling such simulations with specific instructional coaching allows for increased and individualized remediation of the way instruction is given, classroom management practices, or getting to know your student population. This exploratory case study investigated the extent to which virtual simulations combined with instructional coaching impacted the way pre-service educators learned how to provide opportunities to respond (OTR) to the avatar students through the repeated teaching of a lesson over four sessions. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Technology Enhancing the Skills of Students with Disabilities)
Figures

Figure 1

Back to Top