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e-Learning: the student experience

Gilbert, Jennifer and Morton, Susan and Rowley, Jennifer (2007) e-Learning: the student experience. British Journal of Educational Technology, 38 (4). pp. 560-573. ISSN 1467-8535

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Abstract

The paper draws on in-depth qualitative. comments from student evaluation of an e-learning module on an MSc in Information Technologies and Management, to develop a picture of their perspective on the experience. Questionnaires that yielded some basic quantitative data and a rich seam of qualitative data were administered. General questions on satisfaction and dissatisfaction identified the criteria that student used in evaluation, while specific questions of aspects of the module generated some insights into the student learning process. The criteria used by students when expressing satisfaction are: synergy between theory and practice; specific subject themes; discussion forums and other student interaction; and, other learning support. The themes that are associated with dissatisfaction include: robustness and usability of platform; access to resources (such as articles and books); currency of study materials; and, student work scheduling. Aspects of the student learning experience that should inform the development of e-learning include: each student engages differently; printing means that students use the integrated learning environment as a menu; discussion threads and interaction are appreciated, but students are unsure in making contributions; and, expectations about the tutor's role in e-learning are unformed.

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