Monday, November 24, 2014

Ascilite day 1 morning sessions

Ascilite day 1 morning

After yesterday's workshop on learning analytics, decided to attend the learning analytics stream through the conference. So apart from chairing one session of 2 or 3 paper presentations, I will try to get to various learning analytics papers.

The conference was opened by the vice chancellor of University of Otago, professor Harlene Hayne and the CE of Otago polytechnic, Phil Ker. Official welcomes from Ascilite president Dr. Caroline Steel and conference organisers, Drs. Bronwyn Hergarty and Jenny McDonald.

The conference keynote is with Professor Sara de Freitas from Murdoch University on educational games: negative rhetoric and the future reality? Some research showing effectiveness of games in helping the learning process but still negative perceptions from media. Need for defining difference between entertainment games and learning games. Covered trends in learning, play and games with generation z coming in, growth in mobile and social interaction. pervasiveness of gaming especially across tablets and mobiles and growth of serious game play including simulations, online learners now in mid 30s, open data, metadata contributions to learning analytics.

Negative perceptions of Gaming despite the research findings on efficacy of game based learning. Presented on importance of social interactive,play and role of learning analytics. Used Triage Trainer' simulation as an example of game set up to test critical skills to prepare doctors, nurses and paramedics for emergency medicine. Comparative evaluations reveal simulation enhanced learning through opportunity to practice skills and apply knowledge and personalised feedback. Neuropsychology approaches possibility for studying why games are engaging. Posit thinking as based on physiological and cognitive functions requiring sensory memory, attention selection cognitive short term and long term memories. Discussed importance of play in brain development. For instance all mammalian infants have a sensitive period where intensity if learning takes place. Play taps in to this sensitive learning period and games may be effective later on through connections to original patterns setup to learn from play. Detailed study In 2011 dunwell, de Freitas Jarvis on four dimensional consideration of feedback in serious gamers, modelling feedback through learning analytics. 

Provided examples of gamification and linking to exploratory learning models, challenge based pedagogy, using games for retention and engagement and using Khan academy as a case study. 5 common mechanics of games are points, badging, levels, leader boards, challenges and main ways to drive engagement as accelerated feedback cycles, clear goals rules, compelling narrative and challenging but not impossible and attainable with effort. 

Example used of mobile game to learn cross cultural dispositions called Maseltov funded by the EU. Then case study of Khan Academy which now as millions of views with 4.4 million visitors a day and uses challenge badges as a core gamification approach. To design content to promote engagement with example of Uniplay. Studying syndicated game content in mine craft, eco challenge, mobile apps, pervasive games and engaging challenges games. Need to map systems more closely against human behaviour. Map learning, theory,interactivity, feedback and adaptivity to learning design and pedagogical modelling, multimodal and experiential learning, adaptive used modelling and educational systems and platforms. Unpacking what is play and what is learning, where are the overlaps, commonalities or differences. 

Shared vision of how new learning is about social interactivity which is immersive, engaging and personalised. New pedagogy socially focused and active. Need to catch up on the concepts presented as there are commonalities with my learning a trade project.

After morning tea, I attend the session with Colin Beer, David Jones and Rolley Tickner from central Queensland university CQU and university of southern Queensland on 'three paths for learning analytics and beyond: moving from rhetoric to theory'. Increase in interest of LA. Again reports on much interest but no many actual implementation. lA has affinity with business intelligence so attractive to educational management. 3 paths do it to, do it for or do it with. Used LA developed system early alert student indicators. Brings information from sms and lms. Creates traffic light based indicator to provide information on students who may require a nudge. Nudges can be created using mail merge, f2f meeting, shared notes etc. signals for nudge can be customised by lecturers. Launched 2012 and evaluations indicate acceptance. Project began 2008 with learning to avoid the do it to or do it for approaches. Adopted the do it with approach by working with teaching staff. Need to drop the language of planning and management but acknowledge  complexity of system.

Then paper from Shane Wohler from eastern Institute of technology and John Jamieson on 'what in me is dark, illumine' developing a semantic URL learning analytics solution for Moodle. Presents on big data and learning analytics, experience with an analytics solution with Moodle and how it is being used and what worked and what did not. Pragmatic solution to setup by leveraging free tools like google analytics, do a macro level trends and behaviours, minimise ethical and security issues, keeping it simple and developed to be shared for benchmarking. So installed Google plugin for Moodle 2.0 and above with ability to manage role specific data. Translate Moodle url to meaningful URLs with moodlesite, school, course, activity etc. linked to google analytics to find out time accessed, where and what accessed with etc. able to map use of tools like turnitin. Due to macro level data, data used to inform strategic governance it strategy and direction, resource allocation. Next steps to work on data governance, policy and procedures, empowering staff to use data to make decisions, focus on actionable intelligence. 

No learning analytics paper in this slot, so stay in the same room and attend the session by dr. Julia Thornton from RMIT on 'deficit theories in the educational technology adoption literature'. Presented on how discourses impact on perceptions through the literature review section of her phD thesis. Approaches to digital literacy include the cookbook/ recipe book approach with deficit as a technical skill, technique or information; information literacy approach with emphasis on competencies and learning to plug a gap; novice expert developmental approach; Digital natives/immigrants approach and diffusion theory approaches.

Lunch follows with opportunity to talk o various people about my poster on the Cpit project surface tablet deployment with findings from the first semester evaluations.

No comments: