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Instructional conceptions Their nature and impact Jan Elen, Rebecca Léonard, Geraldine Clarebout & Joost Lowyck CIP&T, K.U.Leuven TECFA, Université de Genève 12-02-04 Introduction Instructional conceptions: definition

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instructional conceptions

Instructional conceptions

Their nature and impact

Jan Elen, Rebecca Léonard, Geraldine Clarebout & Joost Lowyck

CIP&T, K.U.Leuven

TECFA, Université de Genève

12-02-04

introduction
Introduction

Instructional conceptions: definition

(general and specific) ideas of students about (aspects and / or components of)

learning environments

Prototypical example : Salomon (1984)

television is “easy”; print is “tough”

introduction3
Introduction
  • Related constructs / approaches
    • “cognitional knowledge for classroom teaching and learning” (Peterson, 1988)
    • “beliefs about pedagogy” (Van Etten, Van Etten, & Pressley, 1997)
    • “attitude toward educational use of the Internet” (Ness, Duggan, Morgan, Kim & Wilson, 1999)
    • “beliefs about how teaching should take place” (Kember, 2001)
    • “preference; what students hope for” (Sander, Stevenson, Kind & Coates, 2000)
structure
Structure
  • Why?
  • Theoretical framework
  • Nature of instructional conceptions
  • BooiZ-study : methodological essentials
  • Discussion and conclusions
why study instructional conceptions

instructional optimism / the ‘negative’ answer

learner optimism / the ‘positive’ answer

Why study instructional conceptions ?

Instructional devices not (adequately) used

Growing importance in ID of process variables

Kabisa 2004

Martens et al.

Learners become co-designers (open learning environments; CSCL, learning communities)

theoretical framework simplified

Other moderating variables

Feedback loops

Other contextual elements

Theoretical framework (simplified)

Instructional conceptions

Learning Activities/ Processes

Perceptions

Learning Environment

the nature of instructional conceptions
The nature of instructional conceptions
  • Particular category of (metacognitive) knowledge(Elen, Proost, & Lowyck, 1996)
    • declarative (elements, demands, affordances)/ procedural (function attribution, use)
  • Mediates perceptions(e.g., Trigwell & Prosser, 1999)
  • Moderates impact of instructional environment (e.g., Elen, 1995)
the nature of instructional conceptions8
The nature of instructional conceptions
  • Different objects
    • general (‘high quality instruction’)
      • goals
      • role of students / instructional agents
    • specific
      • tools / approaches (characteristics, functions)
      • features (tools / approaches)
    • [not included : task]
booiz study methodological essentials
BooiZ-study: methodological essentials
  • Questionnaire
    • 2 parts
      • instructional conceptions (3 educational goals [descriptions of LE], 41 features)
      • perceptions / activities
    • N= 2132 / 8 departments (1st, 3rd (5th) year)
  • Construction task
    • students are asked to design a course
    • 6 categories / 52 instances
    • N = 41 / 8 departments(1st, 3rd (5th) year)
substance some findings
Substance: some findings
  • Van Etten et al. (1997)
    • ‘crucial role that instructors play in the educational process’
  • Kember (2001)
    • distinction between didactic/reproductive and facilitative/transformative view
  • Stebler & Reusser (1996)
    • clear ideas about benefits of small-group collaborative work
substance own studies
Substance: own studies
  • Essay-type (Elen & Lowyck, 2000a) [qualitative study, 244 freshmen]
    • ‘good education’ when instructional agent considers needs of students and directs them
    • distinction between learning and studying
    • specific ideas about quality features specific instructional elements
  • University – college study (Elen et al., 1999; Clarebout, et al., 2000) [quantitative (n= 414); sophomores; 2 universities, 2 colleges, 9 programs]
    • 2 scales : encompassing support (9 items; alpha = .75) >encouraging independent work (2 items, alpha = .67)
substance own studies12
Substance: own studies
  • Efficiency – effectiveness study (Elen & Lowyck, 1998; Elen & Lowyck, 2000b) [quantitative n= 489 / university]
    • 2 scales : contribute to reduction of study time / contribute to study results
    • different results on both scales for specific interventions
    • highest scores for traditional interventions (lectures, practical sessions, exercises) lowest for ‘new type of interventions (looking up on the Internet, going to the library)
substance booiz
Substance: BooiZ
  • Factor analysis on 41 items
    • Two-factor solution (41,32% explained variance)
    • Two scales:
      • ‘a learning environment with safe challenges’-scale

40 items, loadings > .40;  = .96

      • ‘the students memorize a lot of information’

1 item, loading = .56

substance booiz14
Substance: BooiZ
  • Second factor analysis on 40 items
    • Six-factor solution (53,62% explained variance) + oblique rotation
    • Six scales: (factor loadings > .40)
      • ‘a student-centred LO’-scale (9 items,  = .87)
      • ‘a challenged LO’-scale (5 items,  = .76)
      • ‘an individualized LE’-scale (2 items,  = .73)
      • ‘an active contribution LE’-scale (2 items,  = .73)
      • ‘an exercise’-item (1 item, factor loading = .71)
      • ‘a teacher-centred LO’-scale (6 items,  = .80)

=> 25 items; 15 items removed

    • intercorrelation .36 - .70
substance booiz15
Substance: BooiZ
  • questionnaire
substance booiz16

SCLE

Challen-ging LE

Differen-tiation

Active contri-bution

Exerci-sing

LCLE

SCLE

1,00

-

-

-

-

-

challenging LE

0,64

1,00

-

-

-

-

Differentia-tion

0,66

0,51

1,00

-

-

-

Active contribution

0,58

0,48

0,46

1,00

-

-

exercising

0,51

0,43

0,43

0,36

1,00

-

LCLE

0,70

0,60

0,58

0,45

0,42

1,00

Substance: BooiZ
  • Pearson correlations between the six scales
substance booiz17

r1, r5, gen1, gen3, gen5, ger1, ger5, p1, p3, p3, p5, go1

G

k3, go1

r1,r3, r3, ger1, ger3, ger3, ger3, ger5,b1, b3, b5,w3,gen1, gen5, k1, k1, k3, p1

w1, b5

D

E

F

r5, b3

r1

w1, w3, go3, p5

A

B

C

- support

- student-characteristics

- student-activities

1

2

3

- content

- method

4

- evaluation

5

Substance: BooiZ
  • Construction task
relationship with other process variables some findings
Relationship with other (process) variables: some findings
  • Kember (2001)
    • beliefs about teaching closely linked to beliefs about the nature of knowledge and conceptions of learning
relationship with other process variables own studies
Relationship with other (process) variables: own studies
  • Parents study (Clarebout, Elen, & Goolaerts, 2003) [quantitative; 536 parents; questionnaire 50 items]
    • Instructional conceptions and epistemological beliefs in same scales (modern vs. classical beliefs)
  • University - college study
    • Instructional conceptions - perceived goal orientation
    • ‘encompassing support’ less important when goal relates to acquisition of meaningful / applicable knowledge
    • 15% of variance in encompassing support-scale explained by learning style scales
relationship with other process variables booiz
Relationship with other process variables: BooiZ
  • Questionnaire
    • sign. influence of study behavior on memorizing (small ES)
    • Sign. influence of goal orientation on memorizing (big ES)
development some findings
Development: Some findings
  • Kember (2001): beliefs do change over time
    • “… it does appear necessary to confront students with the incompatibility of their current beliefs. They cannot come to appreciate a facilitative/transformative model of the teaching and learning process unless exposed to teaching based upon these premises.” (p. 218)
  • Stebler & Reusser (1996) :
    • clear agreements among students and teachers of the same class (benefits of small-group collaborative work)
development own studies
Development : own studies
  • Short-term
    • ParlEuNet-project (Elen & Clarebout, 2001) [quantitative, 139 students (aged 15-17)]
      • after participation : less favorable towards collaboration and use of technology
  • Long-term
    • University - college study
      • Encompassing support regarded to be less important by university students
      • differences between institutions
      • Engineering < communication-education, economics < biomedical for encompassing support
development booiz
Development: BooiZ
  • Questionnaire
    • sign. influence of department on ALL scales (small to big ES)
    • sign. influence of study year on : safe challenges LE, memorizing, SCLE en activity (small ES)
  • Construction task
    • Indications of development
impact some findings
Impact : Some findings
  • Hess et al. (1999)
    • behavioral correlates for attitudes towards Internet e.g., favorable attitude associated (no causal relationship !) with
      • choosing classes that use the Internet,
      • greater frequency of Internet use both in general and for educational purposes,
      • greater number of reasons for using the Internet for education,
      • greater number of Internet features used
impact some findings25
Impact : Some findings
  • Kember (2001)
    • “It was found that the attitudes to and ability to cope with study were influenced by a coherent set of beliefs about knowledge and the process of teaching and learning”
impact booiz
Impact : BooiZ
  • Questionnaire
    • sign. influence of instructional conceptions on perceptions (small ES)
discussion and conclusions
Discussion and conclusions
  • Lack of consistent and generally agreed upon theoretical framework
  • No research agenda : ad hoc research; highly descriptive
  • Lack of clear definition (distinction between: instructional conceptions, instructional beliefs, instructional perceptions)
  • Mixture of research instruments
some forthcoming studies
Some forthcoming studies
  • Unified theoretical framework
  • Unified instrument
  • Systematic studies on impact
some forthcoming studies29
Some forthcoming studies
  • Impact on use of adjuncts aids (South-Africa) [with F. Louw]
  • Moderating role of instructional conceptions on effects of PLE versus traditional LE (Ghana) [with F.K. Sarfo]
  • Impact on tool use in LE for complex learning, interaction with pedagogical agent (Belgium)
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