An impact case study of the employment of multimedia technology within an Italian University Diploma Course - PowerPoint PPT Presentation

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  1. Classroom 2000 2nd INTERNATIONAL CONFERENCE ON NEW LEARNING TECHNOLOGY An impact case study of the employment of multimedia technology within an Italian University Diploma Course L. Baldini, G. Federici, G. Lenzi, E. Palmisano

  2. The BT-Teleform project Objective • testing of didactic experiences by means of multimedia and tele-learning techniques within University diplomas 3 short modules • Environmental lexicon • Applied Meteorology • The water factory each consisting of : • 5 hours as self-learning activity with multimedia products specifically made by different project teams • 5 hours as tele-learning activity between two University sites

  3. Operational context of the BT-Teleform project Universitydiplomas • Environment and Resources Engineering, University of Florence (site of Prato) • Environment and Resources Engineering, University of Basilicata (site of Matera) Courses involved • Management of water resources • Remote sensing systems • Infrastructures and management of water resources

  4. Prato (60 seats) 3 ISDN lines with multi-channel concentrator video and audio signal conversion, compression and decompression communication matrix video mixer audio-video distributor room monitor room motorised camera teacher motorised camera video visualizer light system for video pickup audio diffusion system local direction system teacher’s workstation teacher’s monitor microphones Matera (80 seats) 3 ISDN lines with a multi-channel concentrator video and audio signal conversion, compression and decompression multichannel video mixer 3 monitors for direction and transmission-reception control 2 motorised cameras video projector video visualizer audio mixer and amplifier mobile and table microphones VGA-PAL conversion for PC data transmission Tele-learning equipment

  5. IssuesEnvironmental Applied The water lexicon meteorology factory Lectures - X X discussion X X X exercises X X - specialistic seminars X - X case studies - X - visits - - X tutoring - - - individual studying X X X exams - - - Components of an University Diploma course

  6. Module 1: Environmental lexicon Tele-Lessons: Local site: Prato, remote site: Matera Three specialised seminars and discussions CR ROM: Realised by the University of Florence with “Accademia della Crusca” and external technical support • Reference for the analysis of words and terms in the Italian environmental regulations • Contents including a set of regulations in a hypertext format • Useful as a support for training experiences and for experts in the field (jurists, technicians)

  7. Module 2: Applied meteorology Tele-Lessons Local site: Prato, remote site: Matera A lecture held by a meteorologist CD-ROM: multimedia materials produced by the University of Florence in co-operation with technical experts and a meteorologist • Reference for learning the basis of applied meteorology • Contents including 10 chapters, case-study analysis and exercises • Useful for the comprehension of meteorological phenomena and weather forecasting principles

  8. Module 3: The water factory Tele-Lessons Local site: Matera, remote site: Prato Demonstration about the functioning of the plant described in the CD ROM CD ROM produced by the University of Basilicata in co-operation with a local small enterprise • Reference for the description of the water system of Basento-Camastra in Basilicata • Contents: dam, water treatment system, water supply • Useful for the analysis of an integrated water system and the comprehension of related problems

  9. The impact on users Considered aspects: • acceptance by students • acceptance by teachers

  10. Teacher’s viewpoint • in the traditional course the teacher • is conscius of the didactic methodology • is able to write didactic material • is supported by an assistant (tutor) within direct contact • In BT-Teleform the teacher • is not conscious of didactic methodology • is not able to write by him(her)self didactic material • should be supported by • multimedia production staff • tutor

  11. The student’s viewpoint • In BT-Teleform the student • looks at a display • should follow a less direct protocol • studies also through a multimedia support • in the traditional course the student • follows the lecture • stops the teacher to ask questions • studies on notes, books or other material

  12. The impact on students • Technical • Technical evaluation of CD-ROM, evaluation of technical aspects of remote lesson • Contents • Evaluation of contents of CD-ROM, evaluation of contents of remote lecture • Didactics • Evaluation of learning through CD, fruition of the remote lesson: How ? Questionnaire

  13. The impact on teachers • Technical • Technical evaluation of the video-conferencing apparatus • Didactics • Interaction in the classroom and the remote classroom • Designing the lecture • Directing the realisation of the multimedia support How? Structured report

  14. Prato (local site, 10 respondents) Technical evaluation: 100% sufficient-good Contents: 50% less effective with respect to traditional lesson Interaction and participation: 55% little lost with respect to traditional lessons 45% enough lost 70% fall of attention during the lessons 40% difficulties in asking questions 71% effective methodologies for involving a great number of students from different sites Matera (remote site, 13 respondents) Technical evaluation: 46% problems with video 61% scarce quality of didactic material 61% positive judgement on direction Contents: 85% no difference with ususal teaching Interaction and participation: 31% uneasiness with the teacher 61% several advantages perceived (easy connection among several sites, etc ..) 46% fall of attention during the lessons Environmental lexicon: tele-lesson

  15. Prato (local site, 14 respondents) Technical evaluation: 95% sufficient-good Contents: reduced effectiveness due to “cold” environment Interaction and participation: 50% little lost with respect to traditional lessons 43% enough lost respect to traditional lessons main problems: fall of attention during the lessons followed by difficulties in asking questions and interaction with remote site Matera (remote site, 14 respondents) Technical evaluation: some problems with video good on the whole Contents: no special problems due to previous acquisition by CD-Rom Interaction and participation: 64% enough lost with respect to traditional teaching 86% fall of attention during the lesson 36% difficulty in concentrating 50% advantages perceived in the use of this technology Applied meteorology: tele-lesson

  16. Prato (remote site,12 respondents) Technical evaluation: generally positive with some problems in reception different perception of technical problems 58% personal direction preferred Contents: 73% nothing lost with respect to traditional lesson 27% difficulty in getting immediate explanation by the teacher Interaction and participation: 42% enough lost respect to traditional lessons 25% much lost respect to traditional lessons main problems: fall of attention, difficult interaction with local site, difficulty in asking questions 33% advantages perceived in the use of this technology Matera (local site, 14 respondents) Technical evaluation: no special problems good on the whole Contents: effective and adequate lesson perceived rather like a traditional one Interaction and participation: no special notes The water factory: tele-lesson

  17. Prato (6 respondents) Layout and functionality: good on the whole Contents: effective and well structured Didactic effectiveness: 67% good comprehension of the topic 83% CD-Rom more adequate than paper materials 67% reduced effort in learning Matera (5 respondents) Layout and functionality: good on the whole Contents: effective and well structured Didactic effectiveness: 80% positive comprehension of the topic 100% CD-Rom preferred to paper materials Environmental lexicon: CD-Rom

  18. Prato (14 respondents) Layout and functionality: good on the whole Contents: effective and well structured well balanced in text and graphics audio comments greatly appreciated Didactic effectiveness: 93% sufficient-good comprehension of the topic 71% CD-Rom more adequate than paper materials 50% reduced effort in learning Matera (15 respondents) Layout and functionality: good on the whole Contents: good and adequate 45% not well balanced in text and graphics 36% some problems in the acquisition Didactic effectiveness: 73% good comprehension of the topic 54% paper materials preferred 45% greater effort in learning Applied Meteorology: CD-Rom

  19. Prato (10 respondents) Layout and functionality: good on the whole Contents: effective and well structured 80% adequate to students’ background Didactic effectiveness: positive comprehension of the topic 80% CD-Rom preferred to paper materials 50% reduced effort in learning Matera (10 respondents) Layout and functionality: good on the whole Contents: 80% effective and well structured 40% not much balance between text and graphics Didactic effectiveness: 70% positive comprehension of the topic 60% CD-Rom preferred to paper materials 50% less effort in learning The water factory: CD-Rom

  20. Comments from teachers • Tele-lessons should have been shorter (not more than 2 hours) with prolonged breaks to reduce the risk of attention fall • Tele-teaching should have been mixed with local teaching, in order to encourage students’ participation and discussion • Preparation of tele-lessons should be particularly accurate and specific didactic materials should be prepared in order to keep students’ attention alive (particularly at the remote site) • Teachers should acquire a good management capability of the tele-learning environment, in order to understant technical limits • Direction is very important and specifically skilled personnel is required for this purpose • Students should have been supplied with a sufficient number of microphones to make questions easier to ask • Specially trained tutors should be present in remote sites as a reference for students, to help discussion and to manage possible technical interruptions

  21. Conclusions • The BT-Teleform project has proved that videoconferencing and multimedia supports can be an interesting way of managing educational activities in University diploma courses • The development of such activities can also improve the co-operation among different Universities and with other training institutions • Best results could probably be obtained through a well balanced integration of different learning approaches • This type of didactic interventions require specific design skills and teachers should be trained in order to properly interact with such skills