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Educ. Sci., Volume 9, Issue 1 (March 2019)

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Open AccessArticle A Psychometric Re-Examination of the Science Teaching Efficacy and Beliefs Instrument (STEBI) in a Canadian Context
Educ. Sci. 2019, 9(1), 17; https://doi.org/10.3390/educsci9010017
Received: 25 November 2018 / Revised: 11 January 2019 / Accepted: 15 January 2019 / Published: 17 January 2019
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Abstract
A teacher’s self-efficacy has been found to be one of the most important factors contributing to a successful teaching–learning outcome for both the teacher and the students. Numerous studies have shown that there is a relationship between students’ self-efficacy, students’ academic achievement, teacher
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A teacher’s self-efficacy has been found to be one of the most important factors contributing to a successful teaching–learning outcome for both the teacher and the students. Numerous studies have shown that there is a relationship between students’ self-efficacy, students’ academic achievement, teacher burnout and a teacher’s sense of self-efficacy. In this study, the psychometric properties of the Science Teaching Efficacy and Beliefs Instrument (STEBI) by Riggs and Enochs (1990) were re-examined in a Canadian context utilizing data of 1630 teachers from the Pan-Canadian Assessment Program (PCAP) in 2013. Exploratory factor analysis (EFA) and its associated methods were used to investigate the factorial structure of the STEBI, and Cronbach’s alpha was calculated as a measure of reliability. The results showed adequacy of a two-factor solution and similar overall patterns of factor loadings across orthogonal and oblique rotations. In terms of reliability analysis, both factors had reliability coefficients lower than the original scale. The implications of these findings and the future directions for research are discussed. Full article
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Open AccessArticle An Interpretive Structural Modeling of Teamwork Training in Higher Education
Educ. Sci. 2019, 9(1), 16; https://doi.org/10.3390/educsci9010016
Received: 28 November 2018 / Revised: 10 January 2019 / Accepted: 11 January 2019 / Published: 16 January 2019
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Abstract
In the past decade, the importance of teamwork training in higher education and employers’ enthusiasm for recruiting team players have been widely discussed in the literature. Yet, the process through which effective teamwork training is developed in a higher education setting has not
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In the past decade, the importance of teamwork training in higher education and employers’ enthusiasm for recruiting team players have been widely discussed in the literature. Yet, the process through which effective teamwork training is developed in a higher education setting has not yet been properly discussed. The present study aims to map the precedence relationships among the key determinants of teamwork training effectiveness and explain the process through which an effective teamwork training program can be developed. The study first conducted an extensive review of the literature to highlight the key determinants of effective teamwork training. Next, the study benefitted from an interpretive structural modeling technique and captured the opinions of a group of teamwork training experts to further map the interrelationships among the potential determinants that were identified. By listing the key determinants of effective teamwork training, mapping their interrelationships, and identifying their driving and dependence power, the present study is expected to help practitioners and academicians through providing a detailed understanding of the process through which an effective teamwork training program can be developed in a higher education context. Full article
Open AccessArticle Training Future Engineers to Be Ghostbusters: Hunting for the Spectral Environmental Radioactivity
Educ. Sci. 2019, 9(1), 15; https://doi.org/10.3390/educsci9010015
Received: 12 November 2018 / Revised: 10 January 2019 / Accepted: 11 January 2019 / Published: 15 January 2019
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Abstract
Although environmental radioactivity is all around us, the collective public imagination often associates a negative feeling to this natural phenomenon. To increase the familiarity with this phenomenon we have designed, implemented, and tested an interdisciplinary educational activity for pre-collegiate students in which nuclear
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Although environmental radioactivity is all around us, the collective public imagination often associates a negative feeling to this natural phenomenon. To increase the familiarity with this phenomenon we have designed, implemented, and tested an interdisciplinary educational activity for pre-collegiate students in which nuclear engineering and computer science are ancillary to the comprehension of basic physics concepts. Teaching and training experiences are performed by using a 4” × 4” NaI(Tl) detector for in-situ and laboratory γ-ray spectroscopy measurements. Students are asked to directly assemble the experimental setup and to manage the data-taking with a dedicated Android app, which exploits a client-server system that is based on the Bluetooth communication protocol. The acquired γ-ray spectra and the experimental results are analyzed using a multiple-platform software environment and they are finally shared on an open access Web-GIS service. These all-round activities combining theoretical background, hands-on setup operations, data analysis, and critical synthesis of the results were demonstrated to be effective in increasing students’ awareness in quantitatively investigating environmental radioactivity. Supporting information to the basic physics concepts provided in this article can be found at http://www.fe.infn.it/radioactivity/educational. Full article
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Open AccessArticle Visualizing the Greenhouse Effect: Restructuring Mental Models of Climate Change Through a Guided Online Simulation
Educ. Sci. 2019, 9(1), 14; https://doi.org/10.3390/educsci9010014
Received: 10 December 2018 / Revised: 2 January 2019 / Accepted: 2 January 2019 / Published: 13 January 2019
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Abstract
The purpose of this design based research study was to better understand and build from students’ perceptual experiences of visual representations of the greenhouse effect. Twenty undergraduate students were interviewed as they engaged with an online visualization for the learning of the greenhouse
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The purpose of this design based research study was to better understand and build from students’ perceptual experiences of visual representations of the greenhouse effect. Twenty undergraduate students were interviewed as they engaged with an online visualization for the learning of the greenhouse effect. We found that, even though all students agreed that climate change is happening, a majority initially held a misconception about how it works. Upon engaging with the visualization, students made perceptual inferences and formulated causal rules that culminated in an improved description of how climate change works. This trajectory was supported with prompts from the interviewer to make predictions, observe specific interactions in the visualization and revise their causal inferences based on these observations. A case study is presented to illustrate a typical learning trajectory. Full article
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Open AccessEditorial Acknowledgement to Reviewers of Education Sciences in 2018
Educ. Sci. 2019, 9(1), 13; https://doi.org/10.3390/educsci9010013
Published: 10 January 2019
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Abstract
Rigorous peer-review is the corner-stone of high-quality academic publishing [...] Full article
Open AccessArticle Financial Literacy Education with an Aboriginal Community: Identifying Critical Moments for Enabling Praxis
Educ. Sci. 2019, 9(1), 12; https://doi.org/10.3390/educsci9010012
Received: 7 November 2018 / Revised: 19 December 2018 / Accepted: 7 January 2019 / Published: 10 January 2019
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Abstract
Conventional financial literacy education (FLE) practices promote individual choice and responsibility for financial circumstances. The untruth connected to conventional FLE is that achieving financial well-being is possible after acquiring financial skills and knowledge and choosing to make effective financial decisions. In this article,
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Conventional financial literacy education (FLE) practices promote individual choice and responsibility for financial circumstances. The untruth connected to conventional FLE is that achieving financial well-being is possible after acquiring financial skills and knowledge and choosing to make effective financial decisions. In this article, I share an exploration of FLE practices with an Aboriginal community that unfolded after a conventional train-the-trainer financial literacy workshop failed to gain traction. Nineteen semi-structured interviews took place with community members to understand their experiences, interest and perceived relevance of FLE. The importance of site-specific FLE was revealed as the tension between individual wealth accumulation practices promoted in conventional FLE collided with Indigenous ways of being, knowing and doing. Identified are critical moments for reflection that may enable praxis in FLE. By enabling praxis an educator moves away from conventional one-size-fits-all approaches to FLE, where participants’ needs are assumed, and towards more tailored approaches. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Economic Education)
Open AccessArticle Incremental Transformations: Education for Resiliency in Post-War Sri Lanka
Educ. Sci. 2019, 9(1), 11; https://doi.org/10.3390/educsci9010011
Received: 5 December 2018 / Revised: 22 December 2018 / Accepted: 24 December 2018 / Published: 8 January 2019
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Abstract
There is growing evidence to support the relationship between levels of gender inequality in a society and its potential for conflict. Positive attitudes to gender equality in and through education strengthen social cohesion; consequently, there is a need for gender-transformative education for peacebuilding.
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There is growing evidence to support the relationship between levels of gender inequality in a society and its potential for conflict. Positive attitudes to gender equality in and through education strengthen social cohesion; consequently, there is a need for gender-transformative education for peacebuilding. Drawing on the 4Rs (representation, redistribution, recognition, and reconciliation) framework in conjunction with the idea of incremental transformation with a focus on resilience, this study examines how eleven ethnic minority high school girls from Sri Lanka understand the transformative role of education in their lives as it relates to peace and gender equality. Education was a source of hope for the participants of this study and thus contributed to their resilience. However, rather than fostering and capitalizing on this resilience to build social cohesion and peace, education and the school systems are silencing them. This silencing is evident in the acceptance and normalization of militarization in their communities, daily experiences of gender-based violence (GBV), and the message, through the formal and informal curriculum, that gender equality has been achieved in Sri Lanka. Full article
Open AccessArticle Community of Inquiry on Facebook in a Formal Learning Setting in Higher Education
Educ. Sci. 2019, 9(1), 10; https://doi.org/10.3390/educsci9010010
Received: 11 November 2018 / Revised: 16 December 2018 / Accepted: 28 December 2018 / Published: 7 January 2019
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Abstract
This study demonstrates an application of Facebook for higher education in science (STEM), and it clarifies its impact on students’ learning in a formal online learning setting. A combined qualitative and quantitative approach was used. Messages posted on Facebook were classified by qualitative
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This study demonstrates an application of Facebook for higher education in science (STEM), and it clarifies its impact on students’ learning in a formal online learning setting. A combined qualitative and quantitative approach was used. Messages posted on Facebook were classified by qualitative transcript analysis. The perception and experience of students with Facebook were recorded by means of pre- and post-tests, using a treatment/control group approach. The results show that an integral Community of Inquiry (CoI) was formed on Facebook within the regular online course, encompassing all relevant CoI interactions leading to a powerful educational experience. Additionally, a type of CoI interaction “student–community” is observed, which was not reported before. The results show that the use of Facebook had positive effects on students’ learning, only when the activities on Facebook were constructively integrated in a course design, and a moderator was present. More research is needed to include larger group sizes and other course designs. Full article
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Open AccessArticle Opinions and Expectations of Turkish and Foreign National Students Studying at Northern Cyprus Universities Concerning Multicultural and Inclusive/Integrated Education Settings
Educ. Sci. 2019, 9(1), 9; https://doi.org/10.3390/educsci9010009
Received: 27 November 2018 / Revised: 22 December 2018 / Accepted: 29 December 2018 / Published: 4 January 2019
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Abstract
As of 2018 there are 18 universities active in Northern Cyprus offering education. According to the data provided by the Ministry of Education, there are nearly 93,000 students studying in this country. Approximately 65,000 of these students are of Turkish origin (Republic of
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As of 2018 there are 18 universities active in Northern Cyprus offering education. According to the data provided by the Ministry of Education, there are nearly 93,000 students studying in this country. Approximately 65,000 of these students are of Turkish origin (Republic of Turkey–Northern Cyprus) whereas 27,000 students are foreign nationals. An examination of the universities in Northern Cyprus shows that, in addition to Northern Cyprus nationals, students from various countries, such as Turkey, Egypt, Morocco, Libya, Lebanon, Palestine, Syria, Iraq, Jordan, Iran, Pakistan, India, Bangladesh, Turkmenistan, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Azerbaijan, Nigeria, Ghana, Somalia, Sudan, Kenya, Ghana, Brazil, Moldova, Brazil, and Ukraine, are studying in this country. Paying attention to the cultural and social structures of individuals in such a wide student spectrum is an extremely delicate, but essential, topic. Concepts such as race, ethnic origin, language, sexual orientation, age, special needs, social class, religion, and sect are elements of multiculturalism and inclusive/integrated education should be considered at every level of education, including university, thus education settings and curricula should be planned accordingly. In the paper, opinions of Turkish and foreign national students studying at Northern Cypriot universities in “multicultural and inclusive/integrated education settings” are obtained, their expectations are identified and comparisons and recommendations are provided. The conclusions drawn from the research indicate that fundamental expectations of students from multicultural in inclusive/integrated education settings is providing equal opportunity to education whilst making sure that everyone can have the chance for experiencing their culture properly. In addition, other expectations of students include organization of new activities for socialization, development and display of positive and supporting attitudes by lecturers towards different social groups and cultures and being able to easily express their ethnic identities in different settings in universities. Another conclusion obtained from this study is that Turkish students appear to have more positive opinions compared to foreign students in terms of experiencing multiculturalism in university settings in Northern Cyprus. Full article
Open AccessArticle An Analysis of the Features of Words That Influence Vocabulary Difficulty
Educ. Sci. 2019, 9(1), 8; https://doi.org/10.3390/educsci9010008
Received: 24 September 2018 / Revised: 8 December 2018 / Accepted: 18 December 2018 / Published: 3 January 2019
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Abstract
The two studies reported on in this paper examine the features of words that distinguish students’ performances on vocabulary assessments as a means of understanding what contributes to the ease or difficulty of vocabulary knowledge. The two studies differ in the type of
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The two studies reported on in this paper examine the features of words that distinguish students’ performances on vocabulary assessments as a means of understanding what contributes to the ease or difficulty of vocabulary knowledge. The two studies differ in the type of assessment, the types of words that were studied, and the grade levels and population considered. In the first study, an assessment of words that can be expected to appear with at least moderate frequency at particular levels of text was administered to students in grades 2 through 12. The second study considered the responses of fourth- and fifth-grade students, including English learners, to words that teachers had identified as challenging for those grade levels. The effects of the same set of word features on students’ vocabulary knowledge were examined in both studies: predicted appearances of a word and its immediate morphological family members, number of letters and syllables, dispersion across content areas, polysemy, part of speech, age of acquisition, and concreteness. The data consisted of the proportion of students who answered an item correctly. In the first study, frequency of a word’s appearance in written English and age of acquisition predicted students’ performances. In the second study, age of acquisition was again critical but so too were word length, number of syllables, and concreteness. Word location (which was confounded by word frequency) also proved to be a predictor of performance. Findings are discussed in relation to how they can inform curriculum, instruction, and research. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Vocabulary Development)
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Open AccessArticle Applying Authentic Learning through Cultivation of the Entrepreneurial Mindset in the Engineering Classroom
Educ. Sci. 2019, 9(1), 7; https://doi.org/10.3390/educsci9010007
Received: 15 November 2018 / Revised: 18 December 2018 / Accepted: 26 December 2018 / Published: 31 December 2018
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Abstract
Higher education provides plenty of opportunity for theory and in many cases, even the ability to apply theory in a laboratory setting. Yet, there remains limited opportunity for students to learn by doing through participation in authentic learning experiences. The purpose of this
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Higher education provides plenty of opportunity for theory and in many cases, even the ability to apply theory in a laboratory setting. Yet, there remains limited opportunity for students to learn by doing through participation in authentic learning experiences. The purpose of this paper is to provide one potential solution for integrating authentic learning into the engineering classroom by cultivating the entrepreneurial mindset. As entrepreneurship serves as an integral part of the economy, developing an entrepreneurial mindset through authentic learning experiences is essential for engineers. While online discussion prompts represent a useful way for educators to facilitate student learning, less is known about how to facilitate online discussions in a way that truly cultivates an entrepreneurial mindset for engineering students. In this paper, the key intentions of entrepreneurially-minded learning are reviewed, and a guide for creating online discussions applicable to any engineering course is presented. Example online discussion prompts incorporating the entrepreneurial mindset are then shared from an Introduction to Engineering course. Results from a mixed methods survey instrument suggests positive impacts towards student perceptions of online discussions and development of the entrepreneurial mindset. Recommendations for effectively and efficiently facilitating online discussions for entrepreneurially-minded learning in the engineering classroom are offered. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Authentic Learning)
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Open AccessArticle Regional Collaboration for Sustainability via Place-Based Ecology Education: A Mixed-Methods Case Study of the Upper Valley Teaching Place Collaborative
Educ. Sci. 2019, 9(1), 6; https://doi.org/10.3390/educsci9010006
Received: 10 December 2018 / Revised: 26 December 2018 / Accepted: 28 December 2018 / Published: 29 December 2018
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Abstract
Place-based Ecology Education (PBEE) has emerged as a compelling approach to achieving the sustainability goals of Environmental Education (EE), including helping children understand, care about, and take action to protect the environment. Collaboration for teacher training can amplify and expand the reach and
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Place-based Ecology Education (PBEE) has emerged as a compelling approach to achieving the sustainability goals of Environmental Education (EE), including helping children understand, care about, and take action to protect the environment. Collaboration for teacher training can amplify and expand the reach and effectiveness of PBEE within a given geographic region. This case study of a collaborative of five PBEE professional development organizations provided a noteworthy example of collective evaluation. The primary data source was quantitative and qualitative analysis of 156 survey responses from K-12 classroom teachers, administered from 2016 to 2018 in the Upper Valley region of New Hampshire and Vermont. On average, teachers reported medium-sized (Cohen’s d 0.4 to 0.6), statistically significant changes over the prior year for all six PBEE core practices measured. Teacher responses to open-ended survey items suggested that PBEE often involves coordination between and contribution from multiple players with different roles but similar goals. Cross tabulation with quantitative results suggested that collaboration within schools was a central factor associated with high levels of PBEE practice. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Geography Education Promoting Sustainability)
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Open AccessArticle Experience in the Use of Social Software to Support Student Learning in University Courses of Science and Engineering Degrees
Educ. Sci. 2019, 9(1), 5; https://doi.org/10.3390/educsci9010005
Received: 31 October 2018 / Revised: 15 December 2018 / Accepted: 23 December 2018 / Published: 28 December 2018
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Abstract
A wiki is an easy-to-use online tool for teachers and students, as it is a collaborative website that provides the opportunity to develop and modify its content to every member in an interactive and fast way. This paper comparatively describes experiences in the
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A wiki is an easy-to-use online tool for teachers and students, as it is a collaborative website that provides the opportunity to develop and modify its content to every member in an interactive and fast way. This paper comparatively describes experiences in the implementation of wikis as voluntary activities in first-year courses in a degree in Chemistry and third-year courses in a degree in Telecommunication System Engineering. The main goal of using the wikis was to achieve collaboration among students to generate knowledge. The developed methodology was applied to the resolution of exercises, problems, and test questions, as well as to the elaboration of class notes and a bilingual glossary. The approach turned the students into active learners, increasing their interest in the course contents, promoting knowledge exchange among students and encouraging the self-management of their learning process. The role of the teacher was to provide feedback to the students in order to ensure the accuracy of the contents. Four different patterns were distinguished among the students according to their participation level in the wiki. The students who were most committed to the courses were also the most involved in the wikis, and the combination resulted in the students’ success. The results obtained for the degree in Chemistry were better than those of the degree in Telecommunication System Engineering, which was ascribed to the increased connection among the first-year students. The didactic strategy was very positive, although the percentage of participation in the wikis was somewhat low, in particular for the third-year students, who were more independent and self-organized. Initially, the number of wiki visits increased suddenly, and then moved to a long period of lower activity in the degree of Chemistry and lethargy in the degree of Telecommunication System Engineering. Therefore, it is desirable to introduce modifications in the approach, such as flexible and consensual planning with the students in order to ensure their full engagement. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Computer-based Learning in Higher Education)
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Open AccessReview Enhancing the Entrepreneurial and Intrapreneurial Attributes of Engineering Graduates: A Review Proposal for Metallurgy and Materials Engineering Undergraduate Curricula at Two African Universities
Educ. Sci. 2019, 9(1), 4; https://doi.org/10.3390/educsci9010004
Received: 15 November 2018 / Revised: 17 December 2018 / Accepted: 21 December 2018 / Published: 27 December 2018
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Abstract
This paper explores the potential opportunities to enhance the entrepreneurial and intrapreneurial attributes of graduates in the Metallurgy and Materials Engineering curricula at two universities in Zimbabwe and South Africa. Due to the diminishing geographical constraints between Zimbabwe and South Africa, and the
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This paper explores the potential opportunities to enhance the entrepreneurial and intrapreneurial attributes of graduates in the Metallurgy and Materials Engineering curricula at two universities in Zimbabwe and South Africa. Due to the diminishing geographical constraints between Zimbabwe and South Africa, and the strong juxtaposition between the two economies, this paper adopts a simplified comparative education methodology to benchmark education best practices between these two countries. While the reviewed curricula in their present form may be providing learners with opportunities for disciplinary problem solving and inquiry-based learning, this paper proposes a body-centred cubic (bcc) model to integrate a new dimension of entrepreneurial and intrapreneurial education into the teaching and learning space. Based on the 3D bcc lattice with six planes, where the first five planes represent the current curricula, pedagogy practices and desired attributes, the sixth plane is taken to represent the additional dimensions of the desired entrepreneurial and intrapreneurial attributes. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Current Issues and Trends in Higher Education)
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Open AccessArticle The Role of Subjective Quality Judgements in User Preferences for Mobile Learning Apps
Educ. Sci. 2019, 9(1), 3; https://doi.org/10.3390/educsci9010003
Received: 20 November 2018 / Revised: 15 December 2018 / Accepted: 18 December 2018 / Published: 24 December 2018
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Abstract
This study investigated whether subjective quality judgements on sound and picture quality across three devices (iPhone, iPad, and iPad mini) affected user preferences for learning applications. We tested 20 native Finnish-speaking users trialing generic audio clips, video clips, and two kinds of learning
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This study investigated whether subjective quality judgements on sound and picture quality across three devices (iPhone, iPad, and iPad mini) affected user preferences for learning applications. We tested 20 native Finnish-speaking users trialing generic audio clips, video clips, and two kinds of learning apps that were heavily reliant on sound. It was found that there was a main effect of the device on perceived sound quality, replicating earlier findings. However, these judgements did not impact on the users’ preferences for different devices nor on their preferences for different applications. The results are interpreted as indicating that perceived quality and affordances are less important for users in these contexts than other considerations (e.g., convenience, mobility, etc.). Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Mobile Learning)
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Open AccessArticle Exploring Responsible Project Management Education
Educ. Sci. 2019, 9(1), 2; https://doi.org/10.3390/educsci9010002
Received: 7 November 2018 / Revised: 14 December 2018 / Accepted: 17 December 2018 / Published: 20 December 2018
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Abstract
As projects are evolving from tactical level ‘tasks’ to societally-relevant ‘instruments of change’, the theories, methods, and practices of project management need to evolve, too. Academic programs on project management, logically, should be frontrunners in this development, which calls for societally-relevant and ‘responsible’
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As projects are evolving from tactical level ‘tasks’ to societally-relevant ‘instruments of change’, the theories, methods, and practices of project management need to evolve, too. Academic programs on project management, logically, should be frontrunners in this development, which calls for societally-relevant and ‘responsible’ project management education. Following the model of the United Nations Principles for Responsible Management Education, some first ideas on what Responsible Project Management Education should entail developed. The study presented in this article uses meta-synthesis to explore the meaning and characteristics of responsible project management education. The study concludes nine characteristics that provide a conceptual starting point for more empirical research on the topic. Full article
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Open AccessArticle Effects of Postural Education and Physical Activity on UCLA Evaluation and Health Status in Adults from Chile: An Intervention Program
Educ. Sci. 2019, 9(1), 1; https://doi.org/10.3390/educsci9010001
Received: 2 November 2018 / Revised: 12 December 2018 / Accepted: 18 December 2018 / Published: 20 December 2018
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Abstract
Shoulder pathologies among the adult population are increasing, causing a high concern in health-educational institutions. The aim of this research is to take a step further and to conduct a detailed study of the relationship between the application of Jackins technique and a
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Shoulder pathologies among the adult population are increasing, causing a high concern in health-educational institutions. The aim of this research is to take a step further and to conduct a detailed study of the relationship between the application of Jackins technique and a postural education program for people affected by shoulder problems. This quasi-experimental study was carried out on 41 adults with shoulder pathologies, with an average age of 58.17±11.75. The main instruments used were the UCLA Test, Thermometer Euroqol of Health, and an ad-hoc questionnaire. In addition, SPSS 22.0 was used for statistical analysis. The results show that the Jackins shoulder rehabilitation program produces significant improvements in participants who it was applied to, causing a positive increase in shoulder evaluation and health status. Similarly, participants who were given a postural education treatment did not experience any modification in these variables. The Jackins program resulted in improvements in reference to shoulder evaluation. Thus, the course of the intervention program based on physical activity (six months) produces functional improvements in shoulder pathology through supervised therapeutic exercises and home intervention in patients with subacromial syndrome. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Didactics of Physical Education and Sport)
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