TOJNED - Volume 11 - Issue 1 - January 2021

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A PHENOMENOLOGICAL STUDY OF PEDAGOGICAL CHANGES IN PRESERVICE TEACHERS THROUGH PARTICIPATION IN PROJECT-BASED LEARNING

Lory E. Haas, Elizabeth Lasley

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Abstract:

There is extensive theoretical and practical research devoted to the purpose for implementing various pedagogies of engagement for student-centered learning. This article presents a phenomenological study of preservice teachers’ cognitive and affective behavioral changes after participating in a semester-long project-based learning (PBL) experience.  Forty-seven undergraduate education majors seeking certification in early childhood-6th-grade education who were enrolled in an early childhood education course participated in a PBL pedagogical approach to learning. Participants' shared their previous experiences with teaching and learning had been traditional approaches which were teacher-centered and teacher-directed. At the end of the semester and completion of their projects, students were asked to respond in writing to the following questions: Reflecting over the past semester, how do you think you have or have not changed from when you entered this course?  Why do you think you have or have not changed? Responses to the questions revealed students were challenged by the student-centered approach to learning and preferred it versus traditional approaches. Findings of this phenomenological study illustrate the emergence of five themes based on students' perceptual changes after their semester-long experiences with PBL: autonomy, mastery, purpose, perspective taking, and evaluation. The themes align with the pedagogical principles of engagement identified in PBL and are consistent with skills needed for critical thinking and paradigm shifts in education to prepare individuals for advances in a global society.

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DIFFERENCES, LIMITATIONS AND ADVANTAGES OF EFFECTIVE ONLINE AND FACE-TO-FACE TEACHING METHODS FOR A MEDIA ARTS COURSE

Jung Hyun Moon, Jace Hargis, Hui-Ching Lu

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This study assesses the differences, limitations and advantages of online teaching and learning in interactive media arts (IMA) and design education. This research traces the development of alternative methods and activities for effective online teaching and learning during a sudden migration from face-to-face (F2F) to online caused by the outbreak of the COVID-19. Data and reflections were gathered and qualitatively analyzed from media production and programming courses. The courses were conducted with newly developed and adjusted methods including synchronous online lecture, live-coding, discussion and presentation, asynchronous video tutorial, virtual office hours, responsive communication and online exhibition. In addition, various methods of trouble-shooting students' code issues were explored, which included Slack, Google Drive, Atom Teletype, VS Code LiveShare and Zoom ScreenShare. Findings reveal that the adjusted online methods produced similar outcomes to F2F instruction. The results display positive assessments of students' engagement and adaptation to online teaching and learning.

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DISCOVERING MULTIPLE TRUTHS IN LITERATURE: THE KEY TO INCULCATING STUDENTS’ CRITICAL THINKING SKILLS

Dushko Talevski, Elena Shalevska

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Utilizing the educational potential of literature in teaching English is an effective method of language instruction. While the primary goal of such lessons is improving the students’ language skills, teachers are granted an oppor-tunity to engage students in earnest discussions of the chosen literary composition. The secondary, yet not unim-portant, goal of language lessons thus forms for purposes of preparing young malleable minds for the perils of the World’s pervasive ambiguity. Attaining critical thinking skills is the process of gradually learning how to discern the veracity of various factoids, individual stories, collective events and the deliberations of separate minds. Crit-ical thinking translates to a decision on the shape of individual truth and the consequences that arise as a result. Literature’s nature allows for multiple interpretations of a singular idea, emotion, consideration or action. The notion that reality is formed in individual minds is a central tenet in various schools of thought. Applying to that belief, reality and our perception of it is shaped by the lens through which we view it. Therefore, thorough and honest investigation of the written word may lead to different realizations of the world. Multiple interpretations gestate when thinkers apply their experiences and ideology on the same thread of words found in the pages of a book of poems or stories in prose. When confronted with a literary artwork, students must form judgments about the author’s intent, the overall tone of the story, the characters’ motivations and the values they express.
The journey undertaken toward the truth will vary depending on the truth-seeker. The same story will provoke different opinions in most cases. The students’ individual truths will clash to a minor or major degree depending on the compatibility of their experiences. The miserable Valjean, for instance, steals a loaf of bread and forces exclamations of disgust from certain readers due to the criminality of his ways. The majority, however, consider him a hero whose morality collides with the faceless laws void of humanity. Discovering the truth in words erected for progeny is a deeply individual exercise. The beauty and soundness of the reveled truth will depend on the conviction of the seeker. Well-nurtured truths stand tall in defiance against the ambiguity that surrounds us.

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INTEGRATION OF KEY COMPETENCES IN THE NORMAL LECTURE TURNS OF BASIC ACADEMIC STUDIES

Eckehard MÜLLER, Carolin MAS

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Soft skills or better in Europe called key competences are essential for everyone in the working life and often
stay in the shadow of traditional lectures. Because they are competences and no qualifications, the key
competences must be trained in real situations. Therefore, a special situation in the lectures must be created. This
paper will show without many efforts you can do it and train key competences.
With relation to the subject of the lecture (Physics, Mathematics, Economics….) you look at great persons like
Newton, etc. The work is to write an application for a job of this person. Afterwards you present this application
at one or group of headhunters. The headhunter could be the person, who gives the lectures on this special
subject.
The experience of the model is reported, and all chances and disadvantages connected to the task will be
discussed.

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TOWARDS DIGITAL INCLUSION IN EUROPE: DESIGNING A COURSE ON SMART HOME TECHNOLOGY FOR OLDER ADULTS

Alfredo Salomão Filho, Trudy Corrigan, Tanja Tillmanns

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An ageing population and an increasing life expectancy in the European continent – together with the current
technological turn, favours the exploration of smart home technology and its potential to promote digital
inclusion of older adults. The research draws on a European Union (EU) Erasmus + project conducted by five
partner organisations from Germany, Ireland, Spain, Italy, and Romania. The study is threefold. It starts by
investigating the perspectives of older adults on smart home technology and continues by assessing participants’
learning preferences in relation to smart home technology. Given the Erasmus + project’s overall aim to design a
course on smart home technology for older adults, the study then discusses design elements to be considered
when assembling a course with this purpose. The analytical framework consisted of multiple descriptive case
studies generated by a survey and a focus group held in each one of the partner countries, summing 215
participants. Results indicate openness of participants towards smart home technology, despite their small
familiarity with it. Data security and home security appeared as the main concern and benefit, respectively.
Older adults require tailored, supportive learning experiences that address their needs and provide a space to
experiment with technology.

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