• Face-to-face versus online tutoring support in distance education

      Price, Linda; Richardson, John T.E.; Jelfs, Anne; Open University (Routledge, 2007-02-14)
      The experiences of students taking the same course by distance learning were compared when tutorial support was provided conventionally (using limited face-to-face sessions with some contact by telephone and email) or online (using a combination of computer-mediated conferencing and email). Study 1 was a quantitative survey using an adapted version of the Course Experience Questionnaire and the Revised Approaches to Studying Inventory. Study 2 was another quantitative survey using the Academic Engagement Form. Study 3 was an interview-based examination of the students? conceptions of tutoring and tuition. In all three studies, the students receiving online tuition reported poorer experiences than those receiving face-to-face tuition. Study 3 showed that tutoring was seen not only as an academic activity but also as a highly valued pastoral activity. To make online tuition successful both tutors and students need training in how to communicate online in the absence of paralinguistic cues.
    • Identity formation among novice academic teachers–a longitudinal study

      McLean, Neil; Price, Linda (Routledge, 2017-12-03)
      This study reports findings from an in-depth, longitudinal investigation of the formation of 13 novice tutors’ professional identities as academic teachers. The study spanned tutors’ first two years in-service, while they were also participating in a teacher development course. Discourse was analysed across 65 time-series coursework texts, completed as part of the tutors’ reflection on their teaching practice. The analysis captured the use of explicit identity positioning cues by tutors across the texts. Four discreet identity positions were catalogued: academic insider, class teacher, teaching course participant and young academic. The study illustrates how these tutors developed more complex identity narratives with enriched coherence over time as they reported negotiating challenges and dissonance between initial expectations and actual teaching experiences. This finding offers explanatory support for previous research regarding the value of longer term teacher development programmes and illuminates existing theoretical models with practitioner perspectives.
    • Learners and learning in the twenty first century: what do we know about students' attitudes towards and experiences of information and communication technologies that will help us design courses?

      Kirkwood, Adrian; Price, Linda; Open University (Routledge, 2005-01-01)
      This article reports on issues relevant for teachers and instructional designers anticipating using information and communication technologies (ICTs) in higher education, particularly those wishing to adopt a flexible learning approach aimed at improving the quality of the student experience. The data that are reported on span more than five years, and have been gathered from a range of large quantitative postal surveys and smaller qualitative surveys, with total respondents numbering around 80,000. The large-scale surveys cover annual course reviews, computer access, students? use of media, access to media technologies and ICT access and use. The smaller qualitative studies include students? use of CD-ROMs and online tuition. This article describes the students? backgrounds and how this can affect their studies. It discusses students? access to media technologies and what their perceptions of media are in the context of independent learning. The conclusion is that, although ICTs can enable new forms of teaching and learning to take place, they cannot ensure that effective and appropriate learning outcomes are achieved. It is not technologies, but educational purposes and pedagogy, that must provide the lead, with students understanding not only how to work with ICTs, but why it is of benefit for them to do so. Knowing about students? use of media as well as their attitudes and experiences can help teachers and instructional designers develop better courses.
    • A longitudinal study of the impact of reflective coursework writing on teacher development courses: a ‘legacy effect’ of iterative writing tasks

      McLean, Neil; Price, Linda (Springer Netherlands, 2018-09-16)
      Studies into the efficacy of teacher development courses for early career academics point to graduates conceiving of their teaching in increasingly complex and student-focussed ways. These studies have used pre- and post-testing of conceptions of teaching to identify this finding. However, these studies do not identify what aspects of these courses contributed to these changes. This exploratory case study investigates this phenomenon through a longitudinal study of 16 academic teachers’ reflective coursework writing. Discourse analysis was used to contrast causal reasoning statements in assignments completed during participants’ first 2 years in-service, while they were completing a UK-based teacher development course. This analysis identified how reasoning about teaching and learning became more complex over time. A key element was the integration of experiences and earlier learning into more nuanced and multi-factorial later reasoning about teaching choices and effects. This ‘legacy effect’ provides new evidence for the efficacy of academic teacher development courses.
    • Seeing through the eyes of a teacher: differences in perceptions of HE teaching in face-to-face and digital contexts

      Jensen, Lise; Price, Linda; Roxå, Torgny; Lund University; University of Bedfordshire (Taylor and Francis, 2019-11-13)
      Studies of how contextual factors influence teachers’ approaches to teaching have chiefly focused on face-to-face teaching in physical campus contexts. This study advances understanding of how applicable this knowledge is in digital contexts. The study explores how university teachers perceive the differences between teaching in physical campus contexts and the digital teaching contexts found in online courses. Interview data were collected from 15 university teachers and analysed using thematic analysis. The results show that respondents perceived digital teaching contexts to be changeable. Changes were attributed to technology development and influences from students and teachers. The respondents varied in how close or anonymous they perceived their online students to be compared to their campus students. The variation was related to the type of teaching-learning activities prioritised by the respondents. However, no relationships were found between respondents’ perceptions of their student-teacher relationship and class size, time invested, or type of communication.