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About this book

This book constitutes the refereed proceedings of the International Conference on Technology in Education, ICTE 2014, held in Hong Kong, in July 2014. The 18 revised full papers and 4 short papers presented were carefully reviewed and selected from 45 submissions. The papers are organized in topical sections on application of mobile technologies in e-learning; technology advancement in e-learning systems; innovations in e-learning pedagogy; open education and institution e-learning policy.

Table of Contents


Application of Mobile Technologies in e-Learning

Student Engagement in the Use of Instant Messaging Communication in Flexible Education

The use of smartphones to communicate among students using instant messaging is very popular in Hong Kong. Recent research has been done on the use of instant messaging in teaching and learning especially in the tertiary education context. The use of instant messaging communication on undergraduate dissertation supervision in the context of flexible teaching and learning with the emphasis on student engagement was discussed. Some measures of student engagement in such communication are proposed.
Francis Yue

Investigating Acceptance towards Mobile Learning in Higher Education Students

Mobile learning or M-learning brings a new aspect of learning environment. Due to the large amount of available applications in mobile devices, students use their mobile devices for many purposes including entertainment, sharing, communication, video recording, photo shooting and learning. The acceptance toward mobile learning has naturally become a major interest for educators. In this paper, we will present preliminary findings from a small scale study exploring the students’ experiences on using mobile devices versus desktop computers, as well as perceptions towards mobile learning. The data are obtained from the quantitative survey. The preliminary findings indicate that students will use mobile devices rather than desktops to access the Internet. Students are willing to use mobile devices to conduct learning activities.
Kenneth Wong, Fu Lee Wang, Kwan Keung Ng, Reggie Kwan

An Adaptive Mobile Learning Application for Beginners to Learn Fundamental Japanese Language

It is difficult for beginners to learn Japanese by self-learning because there is no teacher can give any guidance and feedback to them for improvement. Besides, most of the beginners may not have any basic knowledge of Japanese language, for example, Japanese alphabets or phonology, they don’t have any idea how to get start with and what should be learnt at the beginning. This paper introduces an Android mobile application for the beginners to acquire fundamental knowledge of Japanese language so as to gain the self-learning proficiency in Japanese. This application provides learning materials, auto-generated exercises, handwriting practice tool, voice recording and recognition tool for beginners to learn Japanese. Besides, this application proposes an adaptive learning system to users, which aims to provide different supplementary exercises or learning approaches to learner based on the current performance of an individual learner.
S. C. Ng, Andrew K. Lui, Y. K. Wong

A Mobile Application for Preparing the Driving Tests in Hong Kong

This paper presents an educational mobile application in Android platform called “HK driving tests All-In-One” to help young private automatic car learners prepare for driving tests in Hong Kong. Car learners who are going to take the driving tests may do revision at anytime and anywhere provided that they have an Android device on hand. They can learn in an interesting way and understand the driving techniques more easily with notes, mock tests, animations and games. It will also help in reducing dangerous driving and promoting proper driving skills. The results indicated that developing a mobile application to prepare driving tests in Hong Kong is useful and helpful.
S. C. Ng, Andrew K. F. Lui, S. W. Ng

A Case Study on the Students’ Attitude and Acceptance of Mobile Learning

Transcending the time and geographical constraints of traditional classroom-based learning, mobile learning allows students to study anywhere and at any time. Learning is facilitated, and students generally welcome this flexible mode of learning. According to a study recently conducted by the Open University of Hong Kong, mobile learning is effective for enhancing language proficiency. This paper reports the results of this case study. In brief, it is found that students generally show a positive attitude towards mobile learning and its effectiveness in learning languages. There is a significant acceptance among students towards mobile learning, especially on the usefulness, efficiency, interactivity and convenience. The results further affirm that mobile learning can be an effective means to delivering language proficiency courses, not only for its accessibility from virtually anywhere and allowing the students to learn at any time, but also for enriching learning experience and arousing learning interest by making good use of multimedia components and features.
Simon K. S. Cheung

Technology Advancement in e-Learning Systems

Wearable Technology in Education: From Handheld to Hands-Free Learning

The use of wearable computers in education can significantly help teachers and students in the near future. Last years we can observe the appearance of new wearable devices such as bracelets, clothing, watches, and glasses. One of the most popular wearable computers is Google Glass. In our article we will try to analyse a number of quantitative and qualitative researches on the use of wearable devices in teaching and learning. We found that Google Glass successfully using in pharmacology and healthcare. The Google Glass allows the teacher to demonstrate the practical skills (such as a doctor performs surgery) for the students in real time from any places. In spite of the fact that Google Glass has some technological limitations, any learner needs only a short adaptation period for comfortable usage. The Google Glass helps to create seamless interaction between educators and learners.
Daniyar Sapargaliyev

A Parse Tree Based Computation Technique for Generating Comprehension Style Questions from Chinese Text

This paper describes our research and development work on a computational method that takes a piece of Chinese unstructured text and generates a set of questions and answers as the output. Our method is largely based on Heilman & Smith’s over-generation approach [1] and is included with techniques specific for handling Chinese text. Using the syntactic and semantic features identified in a sentence, various question types can be generated with answers also available. Automatic question generation is potentially a key component in future intelligent e-learning systems, but it is also a very challenging problem. A major objective of this work is to investigate technical issues and limitations that would provide direction of future research.
Andrew Kwok-Fai Lui, Sin-Chun Ng, Yin-Chun Fung

A Web-Based Computer-Aided Assessment Creation and Invigilation System

Computer-Aided Assessment (CAA) is more than managing course materials and assignment submissions. In recent years, automated assessment has become more popular. Public examinations such as the Internet-Based Test (iBT) of TOEFL and IT Certificate Examinations are computerized assessments with multiple-choice questions (MCQ) and the answers are automatically scored. This is an efficient way of assessing students and especially useful for self-financing degree awarding institutes in Hong Kong that are lacking of resources such as time and manpower. In this paper, we propose a web-based computer-aided assessment creation and invigilation system that promotes a paper-free electronic assessment and it is environmental friendly. The system provides a user interface for the teachers to input questions to the database, and generate a computerized assessment paper by the teacher inputting the desirable topics and difficulty levels. In addition, the system allows the examiners to customize assessment rules and regulations in a in-class examination. It automatically saves the data over time to prevent accidental crashes. Also, cheating is prevented by software measures. We have invited some users from education sector to try out our system and evaluated their satisfaction, and the overall result is positive.
Jeff K. T. Tang, Hei-Chun Yeung, Yat-Fai Man, Kwok-Kwan Li, Tak-Lam Wong, Wai-Man Pang, Wai-Shing Ho

The Development of a Final Year Project Management System for Information Technology Programmes

This project tries to develop an online platform which facilitates the final year projects (FYP) process implemented by our information technology programme. The whole FYP is a year-long process involving groups of students and their supervisors to accomplish a theme based project. It is very necessary to employ the latest technologies in order to allow different parties to contribute and communicate more efficiently. Therefore, we have designed and developed a comprehensive web-based system to better support the three kinds of users; they are the FYP programme organizer (PO), project supervisors and the project group members.
Before the academic year starts, PO will have to assign project topics according to the preferences and academic record of the formed project groups. This is a tedious and error prone task to manually complete the allocation of projects. The system is therefore useful to help PO to arrange project selection and allocation procedure, as well as helping the students to submit their preferences and group member information. During the academic year, the system would provide different functionalities for the PO to collect student’s assessments and markers’ scores via the submission and grading module.
Project supervisors will also be able to employ the system for keep tracking the progress of the projects with the use of the project management tools, and online chat function. Both the students and supervisors will be benefited from these functionalities and allow the project to run more smoothly even face-to-face meetings are not held very frequently.
Project group members themselves are provided with similarly effective communication tools to allow easy of discussion on project issues among members. Moreover, they can share resources about the project including source code and data files using our online repository.
Chun-Hang Leung, Chung-Lun Lai, Tsun-Kit Yuan, Wai-Man Pang, Jeff K. T. Tang, Wai-Shing Ho, Tak-Lam Wong

Design and Implementation of a Teacher-Guided Semi-automatic Assessment Feedback Generator

Detailed feedback to assessments is an integral part of students’ learning experience. Students can learn from their mistakes through the teachers’ feedback. However, with the increasing workload, teachers may not have enough time to write detailed and meaningful comments to every student in every assessment. This paper aims to share our experience in designing and implementing a teacher-guided semi-automatic assessment feedback generator. We observed that students’ mistakes are repeating in nature. Instead of writing repeated comments for individual students, teachers may use our system to manage feedback templates and prepare individualized comments. Our system provides the interface for teachers to record common mistakes and comments in student assessments, and it lets teacher assign different comments to students easily. This approach does not only greatly enhance the consistency in teachers’ marking and comment generation, it also frees the teachers from repeated writing. The challenges faced in the design and implementation in our system are discussed in this paper.
Wai-Shing Ho, Tak-Lam Wong, Wai-Man Pang, Jeff K. T. Tang

PMS – A Simulation Game for Interactive Learning of Software Project Management

Successful management of software projects requires both theoretical project management knowledge as well as practical reality-like management experiences. Simulation Based Training provides a hands-on approach to explore the complexity of managing projects through rapid and inexpensive experimentation. Most of the existing project simulation game focuses only on the management of time, scope, cost, and human resource. There are relatively fewer products which focus on project stakeholder management, communication management and quality management.
In this paper, a project management simulation game, PMS, is introduced to support the interactive learning of software project management. The game design, implementation and how it may support the learning of software project management concepts in different knowledge areas are discussed.
Richard W. C. Lui, Hareton K. N. Leung, Vincent T. Y. Ng, Philip T. Y. Lee

Innovations in e-Learning Pedagogy

A Study on Students’ Attitudes Towards Teacher’s Intervention in Statistical Computing Laboratory

Within an IT environment, the teacher’s role has changed from transmitting knowledge to managing IT resources for learning and facilitating student learning. Thus, the teacher planned for improving classroom teaching practice by playing these two roles, particularly in computing laboratory sessions. Students within each computing laboratory session were divided into small groups so as to enable teacher’s intervention to offer assistance or directives within each group more efficiently. A question which arises here is how the teacher’s intervention promoted learning and statistical thinking of students when using IT in a statistics classroom. A questionnaire based survey was then conducted to study the attitudes of students towards teacher’s intervention within IT environment. The results of the survey indicated that the teacher played facilitating and supporting roles in their learning to foster a learning atmosphere, restructure learning tasks and provide feedback.
Ken W. Li, Merrilyn Goos

Applying “First Principles of Instruction” In a Blended Learning Course

In this paper, we share our experience of using the “First Principles” of instruction [1] to design a blended learning course: (a) Learning is promoted when learner are engaged in solving real-world problems, (b) Learning is promoted when existing knowledge is activated as a foundation for new knowledge, (c) Learning is promoted when new knowledge is demonstrated to the learner, (d) Learning is promoted when new knowledge is applied by learner, and (e) Learning is promoted when new knowledge is integrated into the learner’s world. We describe the five “First Principles” of instruction by Merrill and identify the specific instructional activities that support each principle in either the face-to-face mode or e-learning mode. We conducted a survey study to gather students’ perspectives of the organization of the blended course as well as the ability of the blended learning course to engage student learning. Eighteen students were involved in the study. The results showed that the blended learning course was well organized to provide meaningful activities, and that the blended course provided a positive engaging learning environment for the students.
Wing Sum Cheung, Khe Foon Hew

The Greater the Online Participation, the Better the Learning Achievement? A Study of Integrating Moodle into Learning

This study aimed to explore the relationship between students’ online participation in Moodle and their learning achievement. Participants in the study were 78 undergraduate full-time students who were enrolled in a general education course entitled “Digital Citizenship” at a higher education institute in Hong Kong. They were required to choose from and participate in different types of Moodle activities including information access (e.g., reading online supplementary resources), interactive learning (e.g., running online simulations), networked learning (e.g., discussing in online forums), and materials development (e.g., writing reflective journals). The online participation of a student was measured by the number of completed activities, while the learning achievement of a student was determined by his/her essay grade. This study applied the Partial Least Squares (PLS) method to the collected data in order to identify whether there was a link between online participation and learning achievement. The results indicate that online participation in networked learning or in materials development, but not in information access nor in interactive learning, was positively and significantly related to learning achievement. This finding highlights the importance of social interaction and individual constructivism for effective online learning.
Gary Cheng, Hin Leung Chui

Reconceptualizing a Creative and Specific Learning Environment by Using Web-Based Automated E-Quizzes as a Guiding Tools for Accountable Study Behaviour

Web-based automated e-quizzes provides the better ways to transform a creative learning environment to ensure students can manage learning by reinforcing their practices through e-learning and guiding their study behaviour towards the demand for improving quality education. This paper proposed a specific focus on using Web-based automated e-quizzes exercises system (WE system) as an enabling automated learning environment to monitor and guide students’ self-study and revision, with an approach of ‘Assessment For Learning’ as a learning process, and the design of using this WE system will be in line with the four required aspects under the paradigm of our HK Government’s Qualifications Framework in Education. This pragmatic approach is used to cultivate and reinforce students’ accountable study behaviour. Whether this approach of using WE system as compulsory or supplementary in the practical sense of operation or as a catalyst for cultivating student’s study behaviour in the process of learning are further discussed, together with different integrated conceptual frameworks of learning and study behaviours are being empirically reviewed.
Alice M. L. Li

Reflective Practice with Digital Portfolio for Teacher Readiness and Maturation of Prospective Teacher within the TPACK Framework

This study explores the influence of digital portfolio on reflective practice of prospective teachers (PTs) with the Technological Pedagogical Content Knowledge framework (TPACK). A total of 36 PTs studying in a teacher education course (one-year full-time) at a tertiary education institute in Hong Kong took part in the study. Blended learning approach was adopted to facilitate the completion of digital portfolio with various applications of Web services as a pedagogical tool. At the end of the course, the PTs completed the same questionnaire again as a post-test. Results showed that engaging PTs in digital portfolio integrated with different levels of Web services can increase their degree of readiness and maturation in different dimensions under the TPACK framework. The findings shed light on the development of teacher readiness for their entering of teaching profession in terms of technical, pedagogical and content knowledge individually and holistically, and further cultivated a higher degree of sustainability in reflective practice for the prospective teachers.
Hin Leung Chui, Ho Kong Christopher Au-Yeung, Gary Cheng

If You Comes* to Guangzhou: Pedagogical Implications of Typical Errors Committed by Students with Mainland Chinese Background as Revealed on an e-learning Platform

This article aims at revealing the inadequacy of an e-learning platform by examining a number of language errors found among a batch of freshmen (the participants) studying in a self-financing higher education institute in Hong Kong. The participants were selected since they share a common Mainland Chinese background. Meta-linguistic analysis of the errors compiled indicates that the students have both inter-language and intra-language errors, i.e. having difficulties in shaking off the interference from L1 as well as being unable to acquire a number of grammatical rules pertaining to forming syntactically legitimate sentences in L2. Given the dramatic increase of students with such background over the last few years within the tertiary realm, this article may help shed light on how future pedagogical preparations for more effective teaching can be enhanced with regards to such a platform. This article advocates that, it should better be equipped with the capability to issue automatic responses for students to engage themselves in self-studying.
Sui Chi Kwan, Hoi Man Dorothy Chow, Sin Ying Sharon Wong

Open Education and Institution e-Learning Policy

A Framework for Effectiveness of Institutional Policies on Technology-Enhanced Learning

For institutional policies associated with technology-enhanced learning (TEL) instruments, such as blended learning, mobile learning, massive open online courses, and open educational resources, their policy effectiveness is to a large extent affected by how ‘effectiveness’ is conceptualized. Studies on effectiveness of institutional policies reveal that a diverse conceptualization has been employed.
This paper proposes a framework based on the instrumental perspective summarizing different approaches of assessing institutional policy effectiveness and the variables involved in each approach. A systematic literature survey of institutional policies on TEL is conducted, showing that the framework is highly comprehensive in terms of capturing different dimensions of policy effectiveness. This study will provide a point of reference not only on assessing the effectiveness of relevant polices but also for formulating relevant policies by educational administrators.
Beryl Yuen-Yee Wong, Billy Tak-Ming Wong, Sam Pang

Effectiveness of Technology Enhancement in Blended Learning: An Instrumental Perspective

Studies on institutional policies on the use of technology in blended learning reveal that technology choices and policy implementation are largely governed by three common perceptions: (1) technology per se has its own logic of effectiveness and operation, (2) the choice of technology is based on its utilities across contexts, and (3) the application of technology is pre-determined. However, this commonality overlooks the existence of various factors that shape the effectiveness of technology at different stages of application.
This paper examines, via the perspective of policy instrument, various factors that may hinder or facilitate the effectiveness of technology in blended learning. The use of technology is conceptualized as a policy instrument in the process of formulating and implementing institutional policies on blended learning. Its effectiveness is analyzed using four theories of policy instrument, namely the ‘classical’, ‘contextual’, ‘instrument-context’ and ‘constitutive’ approaches to instrument. Results of the analysis show the dynamic nature of effectiveness which should be considered when formulating institutional policies on technology-enhanced learning.
Kam Cheong Li, Helen Lam, Terry Lee

Social Media Education: Barriers and Critical Issues

As one of the highest smartphone penetration regions in the globe, Hong Kong has more than 12 million mobile users are capable to access mobile data services. People spend time on their mobile devices for information, entertainment as well as communication. With the advancement of information, communication and technology (ICT) especially in mobile technology, various online social media tools, e.g. Facebook, WhatsApp, rapidly developed in the past decade. The use of these tools is so overwhelming which transformed people’s way of communication. Discussions on using social media in education are getting keen. However, regardless of the popularity of social media in Hong Kong, the effectiveness of using existing social media tools to facilitate teaching and learning is not noticeable. This paper illustrates the barriers behind this phenomenon in Hong Kong. Factors from technological perspective, institutional perspective and users’ perspective are critically discussed. It is believed that with optimal monitoring, motivation and planning, social media can be beneficial to both institutions, teachers and students in the long run.
Melani Au, Jeanne Lam, Radar Chan

Computer Literacy and Use of Open Educational Resources: A Study of University Students in Hong Kong

This paper reports a preliminary study on the relationship between computer literacy and use of open educational resources (OER) of university students in Hong Kong. It reviews the technology infrastructure and Government support for enhancement of students’ computer literacy, and development of resources in the city, showing that Hong Kong has laid a foundation for OER to grow and bloom. However, by reporting the results of a survey conducted with university students, it highlights that most students, despite their high computer literacy, have a low level of awareness and limited experience of OER, and have been exposed to only a few popular types of resources. The observations call for further institutional and instructional support to enhance students’ awareness of available resources and understanding of their proper use.
Kam Cheong Li, Billy Tak-Ming Wong

A Thematic Analysis of the Blended Learning Experiences of Undergraduate Students in Hong Kong

The development of blended learning in Hong Kong has been shifted to using pedagogical driven approach and the adoption of learning theories in blended learning course development became significant. In the past years, HKU SPACE adopted cognitive alignment in outcome-based learning theory for designing and developing blended learning course to the students. This research aims at understanding learning experiences of undergraduate students in blended learning. In this study, qualitative approach was adopted for obtaining in-depth understanding of learning experiences of the students in the blended learning environment. Focus group interviews for students were conducted in an accounting course. The interviews were analyzed by thematic analysis while thematic maps were used for coding and themes identification. The themes in learn via learning activities, learn via collaboration, learn for good assessment result, learning activities helps study and enjoyed most, perceived advantages of online learning, need more learning support, need mobile learning, preference in integrated and non-integrated blended learning, and difficulties in blended learning were identified. With the themes identified, issues on learning engagement, importance of aligning assessment with learning activity, online collaboration and enhancing blended learning experiences were discussed. Finally, pedagogy designs to enhance students learning were recommended. The study contributes to fill the research gap in understanding blended learning experiences of undergraduate students in Hong Kong.
Jeanne Lam


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