Does the use of a learning platform support approaches to personalised learning in the classroom?

Fanning, James (2012) Does the use of a learning platform support approaches to personalised learning in the classroom? Doctoral thesis (EdD), University of Sussex.

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Much of the research literature relating to the use of virtual learning
environments (VLEs) to support teaching and learning focuses on their use in
higher and further education. This thesis makes a contribution to the study of
such environments in relation to secondary schools in the UK. A number of
common themes were identified from the literature review that was part of my
original critical analytical study and which is updated here. The themes included
assessment, differentiation, collaboration and flexible learning practices. These
were investigated in one school, over the course of one year, during the
introduction of a local authority approved virtual learning environment. I had
assumed that the use of the technology would have a transformational effect on
teacher practice. In reality for most of the time the technology was used to
reaffirm an existing classroom way of doing things.

The conceptual framework that guides the investigation was based on action
research, influenced by social constructionism and critical theory. It employs
aspects of a second-generation model of activity theory to explore the tensions
that may arise in a classroom when technology is introduced. A phased
approach was adopted towards the collection of data, given the complexities of
both classroom practice and the technology employed. This ranged from the
use of questionnaires and technical data from the VLE when it was initially
introduced, to interviews and classroom observations as teachers became more
confident in its use, through to the design of an intervention that enabled a more
in depth exploration of what was happening.

This research revealed that where the use of the technology was most effective
in supporting approaches to personalised learning, a number of key
components were combined. I have proposed that where teachers have the
technical skills to use a VLE, linked to an understanding of the theories and
models associated with online learning and where they structure their teaching
outside the confines of the traditional lesson format, then online technologies
support personalised learning.

Item Type: Thesis (Doctoral)
Schools and Departments: School of Education and Social Work > Education
Subjects: L Education > LB Theory and practice of education > LB1050.9 Educational psychology > LB1060 Learning
L Education > LC Special aspects of education > LC0980 Types of education > LC1001 Humanistic education. Liberal education > LC1022 Computer-assisted education
Depositing User: Library Cataloguing
Date Deposited: 23 May 2012 14:43
Last Modified: 25 Aug 2015 14:19

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