The Future of Education

Edition 12

Accepted Abstracts

An insight into European and South East Asian attitudes towards the use of e-earning, gleaned from surveys carried out in Ireland and Singapore

Sherin Batcha, Academies Australasia College (Singapore)

Steve Jerrams, Centre for Elastomer Research (CER),Dublin Institute of Technology (United Kingdom)

Abstract

To enhance student-centric and collaborative learning, education at tertiary, secondary and primary levels has adopted and customised interactive learning platforms for students. Universities and Colleges often make use of Moodle, BlackBoardCT and other open source platforms. They offer interactive tools such as Forums, Virtual Classroom which are facilitated with both chat and video, to the extent that now every student considers e-learning indispensable.

Many learners and educators nowadays prefer to use online materials for their study for the following reasons:

-       There is an abundance of data and information online covering numerous disciplines.

-       Research students are adept at learning online and regard the method as indispensable. Discussions with postgraduates support this finding.

 

-       Students benefit from the opportunity to learn at their own pace, particularly because they can revisit the work any number of times.

 

-       Relevant study material from anywhere in the world can be accessed instantly.

 

-       The quality of graphical and pictorial information online is rarely matched in the lecture theatre.

 

-       Assessment techniques are easily assimilated within online delivery, with the help of the latest tools developed by instructional designers who facilitate the reusability and interoperability of digital learning resources. This situation enables cost saving.

 

-       The tools used to gain access to online resources for developing and submitting coursework to obtain grades are user friendly and compatible with any type of operating system.

 

In this research, post graduate students on comparable programs in Singapore and Ireland were surveyed to determine the extent of their use of the internet in their studies and to ascertain the interactions on these platforms that had helped them in the completion of assignments and understanding the curriculum. The research will provide valuable insight into contrasting uptake of e-learning and the importance placed on it in an education system heavily influenced by European policies and practices and one that exists in a strong, emerging economy.  Trends in e-learning created by online instructional designers and educators, as well as students and learners are identified, leading to broader conclusions about the direction of higher education in each part of the world.

 

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