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Über dieses Buch

This book constitutes the refereed proceedings of the Fourth International Workshop on Learning Technology for Education in Cloud, LTEC 2015, held in Maribor, Slovenia, in August 2015. The 24 revised full papers presented were carefully reviewed and selected from 46 submissions. The papers cover various aspects of technologies for learning, such as MOOC challenges; cooperative learning; learning engineering; learning tools and environments; STEM.



MOOC Challenges


Engagement Measures in Massive Open Online Courses

Massive Open Online Course (MOOC) provision has proliferated over the past four years and millions of learners have participated. However, it is widely acknowledged that the number of completions is disturbingly low and MOOC drop-out rates have been a prominent issue of discussion. Currently, most MOOC analysis focuses on aspects such as patterns of engagement and prediction of dropout using data obtained by applying learning analytics to the large amounts of data gathered. In contrast, the effectiveness of teaching and learning programs in traditional face-to-face Higher Education (HE) settings is increasingly being assessed by measures linked to the promotion of student engagement. Internationally, student engagement surveys are being used to provide profiles of the effectiveness of teaching and learning within and between courses. In this paper we consider MOOC participation and drop-out issues emerging from the literature, and provide an overview of the student engagement surveys now widely used in HE. MOOC pedagogy is examined from the perspective of student engagement and we identify the need for a similar model adapted to MOOCs which could provide both a framework for course development and an instrument to assess aspects of teaching and learning in existing courses.
Jane Sinclair, Sara Kalvala

Two-Dimensional Knowledge Model for Learning Control and Competence Mapping

The paper presents two-dimensional model for knowledge representation with volume as one variable and ability as another one. This makes possible describing current state of learner’s abilities and integration for higher level parameters e.g. grading related to course or other entities. Both values are related to atomized knowledge elements (competences) with volume interpreted as credit units and ability levels are formed during learning with application of forgetting. This model makes possible characterization (grading) of knowledge based on real abilities independently of predeclared courses and for ‘drop-outs’. So, on that bases one can obtain grade for some course if proper knowledge has been obtained in different courses and schools even when courses had not passed. Also this model helps to build connections between courses as using courses in the role of prerequisites becomes less usable. Not wasting knowledge obtained in MOOCs is another example with high drop-out levels where classical passed-failed model does not work.
Vello Kukk, Kadri Umbleja, Martin Jaanus

Learning, Knowledge and Competence in Global Online-Universities: How Terminology Shapes Thinking

A Theoretical Approach to Innovation and Change in Academic Distance Education
Learning, Knowledge and Competence are popular terms in scientific discourses on the conception and evaluation of academic education. With increasing frequency, those take place in online-settings. This leads to an increasing heterogeneity not only in age and educational background, but also in social-cultural aspects and roles. The traditional way of seeing heterogeneity as challenge to be overcome, has to be changed into recognizing its enormous potential for networked learning processes. To foster such a new learning culture, it is necessary to scrutinize the hidden influence and unconscious patterns behind terminology. To enable global learning communities to successful networked learning, we need to define a holistic key-competence, a tool to enable enhancement in heterogeneous contexts, and a change in methods and criteria to conceptualize and evaluate such learning-scenarios. This paper aims to gain epistemological perspectives for practical use in global online-courses through a fusion of the terms learning, knowledge and competence.
Sabine Siemsen

MOOCs and the Integration of Social Media and Curation Tools in e-Learning

MOOCs (Massive Open Online Courses) have gained popularity for e-learning purposes. Effectiveness depends on platform interface design and management, which should create student cohesiveness and optimize collaboration. A MOOC prototype was developed and e-learning applications were pilot-tested for one semester with a total of 160 students from graduate courses in a French business school. Students used a mobile supported e-learning environment and reported their experiences through the writing of a synthesis, the building of a CMS (Content Management System) and the elaboration of a content curation system.
Jean-Eric Pelet, Marlene A. Pratt, Stéphane Fauvy

The Role of Social Connections in Plagiarism Detection

Plagiarism is considered as an unethical act. Over the past few years its rate has increased considerably due to a widespread access to electronic documents on the Web. Existing tools for plagiarism detection are not efficient enough and if we want to successfully prevent these kind of acts we must improve today’s plagiarism detection approaches. The paper proposes a framework for improved detection of plagiarism, where we focus on integration of information from social networks, information from the Web and semantically enriched visualization of information about authors and plagiates. Visualization enables exploring data and seeking of advanced patterns of plagiarism. We also developed a special tool to support the proposed framework. The results of evaluation confirmed our hypothesis that employment of social network analysis and advanced visualization techniques improves plagiarism detection process.
Aljaž Zrnec, Dejan Lavbič

Cooperative Learning


Eight R’s – Case Study

Teaching engineering subjects is not trivial. Construction engineering is complex and involves many different topics and skills. Traditional approaches such as lecturing in a classroom are not effective. Students need practical skills in order to carry tasks that they meet in real life. It is important that we design the learning environment as authentic as possible. This paper describes the 8 R’s that are used to illustrate how construction engineers are taught and what kind of needs are met for learning tools by this kind of learning.
Marja Naaranoja, Lorna Uden

Designing a PBLJii Script in a CSCL Environment for Bolstering Collaboration and Communication Skills

Teachers’ training programs should focus on practical experiences and reflective practices through technology enhanced learning environments in order to foster their collaboration and communication skills. The aim of this research is the design and implementation of a collaboration PBLJii script (Problem-based learning & Jigsaw II Script), which is orchestrated along the principles of a Problem-based Learning model and the Jigsaw II collaborative strategy in a CSCL environment so as to bolster collaboration and communication skills among teachers. An experimental design research (one group only research) was conducted in a number of primary schools in Greece. The participants (in-service teachers) engaged in the training process through the PBLJii Script in History. There was both a quantitative and a qualitative analysis of the chat and forum messages exchanged by the in-service teachers in the CSCL environment and the results showed that they developed collaborative and communication skills to a great degree as a result of their participation in collaborative tasks.
Sofia Gkemisi, Fotini Paraskeva, Aikaterini Alexiou, Hara Bouta

Applying Adult Cooperative Learning Underpinning Principles to Learning with Social Media

An Overview and Implications for Research
Borrowing from Cooperative Learning (CL) elements as well as from principles used in Study Circles (SC) to define Adult Cooperative Learning (ACL), this paper proceeds to examine the applicability of principles to learning with social media. Following the appraisal of the principles in the context of learning with social media, conclusions are drawn on areas worthy of research to provide for conditions favourable to learning cooperatively in the realm of internet technologies and social media networks.
Jonathan Kaplan

Social Tagging for e-Learning: An Approach Based on the Triplet of Learners, Learning Objects and Tags

The emerging of the Web 2.0 has allowed users more interactivity with Web applications. Social tagging has been recognized as an important solution to the description of resources available on the Web. In the context of e-learning it may be used as an auxiliary mechanism to the composition of learning object metadata. This paper presents an approach based on the triplet of learners, learning objects and tags for providing the social tagging for e-learning. We performed an experiment with 336 technician students that marked 218 electronic learning objects for about 4,985 times. Although our results have shown that social tagging is a promising practice for e-learning some challenges on how to implement it has to be overcome.
Luciana A. M. Zaina, José F. Rodrigues Júnior, Anderson R. do Amaral

Learning Engineering


Learning Analytic and Evaluation in Malleable Learning Environments

Education has evolved from the traditional classroom of blackboard and chalk to multimedia software teaching, online teaching, hybrid education and so on. Learning objects and scenario are growing in scale and functionality. Because of this increase in complexity, the likelihood of subtle errors is much greater. One-way to achieving this proposed goal is by pre-evaluation of these environments. Many companies and departments have their own evaluation criteria and requirements, but the relative and subjective are too much, so they can not meet the general evaluation. For this reason, we propose a framework able to analyse the learning scenario functionalities and aspects and gives an early evaluation of the designed scenario. The evaluation framework is based on contextual elements: Times, Actors, network, user location and correlation between activities. Then we propose to evaluate learning scenario through formal methods which are mathematically based languages, techniques and tools for specifying and verifying. Use the formal methods does not a priori guarantee correctness and successful. However, they can greatly increase our understanding of the learner’s behaviour with the existing scenario by revealing inconsistencies, ambiguities and incompleteness that might otherwise go undetected.
Manel BenSassi, Mona Laroussi, Henda BenGhezala

Knowledge-Management by »Social Writing« 

The Launch and Establishment of an Online-Writing Lab Using the Example of Citavi-Online-Tutorials at the Faculty of Cultural and Social Sciences of the Distance-University in Hagen Germany
This paper presents the conception and first evaluations of an Online-Writing Lab at the Faculty of Cultural and Social Sciences of the Distance-University in Hagen. Academic Writing includes being able to find resources, to do research on the state of art and to critically reflect on recent discourses. Research tools that make this part of academic work easier exist, but require additional (media) competences. These competencies are more or less taken as granted; enabling students to gain them is not really an integral part of study-modules. At the same time the student’s heterogeneity not only in regard to previous knowledge and prerequisites rises, and collaborative and cooperative learning and the necessity to communicate on it becomes an important factor for success and motivation in learning-processes. The conception of the Writing-Lab is an approach to provide students with tools for collaborative learning processes that enable them to gain those competencies.
Sabine Siemsen

The Design of Personal Learning Environments (PLE) with Scope on Information Literacy in High School

Information literacy is considered a key competence for the networked 21st century. Despite of its importance it has not been anchored in educational technology research and practice in sufficient manner yet. The paper at hand contributes to this research gap by providing a concept for design of personal learning environments with scope on information literacy. Personal learning environments (PLE) can be defined as conceptual and technological frameworks that help learners take control of and manage their own learning. This includes providing support for learners to: set their own learning goals and manage their learning in terms of both learning outcomes (content) and process. By applying the design science approach, a framework for PLE is proposed that combines subject-oriented learning objectives with goals to build and foster information literacy. The focus of the research lies in the initial theoretical phase of the design cycle. Based on a systematic literature review first a model for measuring information literacy is developed. The developed model is than embedded in a generic PLE framework that supports building and measuring information literacy in addition to other subject-specific learning goals. Therefore, the paper outlines a framework to conceptualize PLE focusing on information literacy by pursuing the design-based research paradigm.
Sabine Seufert, Katarina Stanoevska-Slabeva, Severina Müller, Nina Scheffler

Effectiveness of Blended Learning Approaches in Engaging Non-law Students to Study Law

This paper focuses on the blended learning measures used in engaging non-law students to study law. The challenge of teaching law to non-law students is that they come with a preconceived notion that law is difficult. It is therefore important for educators to have a more realistic expectation on non-law students compared with law students. The aim of this study is therefore to ensure that lessons are appropriately targeted for the non-law students along with increasing their level of participation in class. The paper employs a method involving THREE (3) broad stages of experiments, observations and surveys stretching over 14 weeks. This paper concludes with the finding that the activities built in during the lesson clearly exhibited a lot of student engagement and interest as shown from the results of the surveys conducted. The study also found that the participants were ready to embrace new methods in teaching and learning with the use of online tools thus enabling student-centered learning.
Kanchana Chandran, Sanath Sukumaran, Kalpana Chandran

Learning Tools and Environments


The Information Society, a Challenge for Business Students?

We welcome digital natives to our university assuming they are competent computer and internet users. However, testing their computer skills at the beginning of the course revealed that they are not as highly skilled as was initially expected. The majority of students had surprisingly never heard of the massive open online courses that have been challenging higher education in recent years. Moreover, a lot of students do not use freely accessible learning resources on the web. Collecting data from Eurostat statistics raises an interesting issue – more and more EU households are getting broadband internet access and internet penetration is not only following users that have accessed the internet once in the last 3 months, but users that access the internet daily. It would be expected that individuals, especially those aged under 30, are highly computer and internet literate, but the data analysis revealed otherwise. Not only students included in the research presented in the empirical part of this paper, but also an average young internet user of one of the 28 EU countries. Using Facebook and the first Google search result is not enough anymore.
Viktorija Florjančič

System Support for Social Learning in Computer Science at a Distance University – The University of Hagen

Students working collaboratively are more successful than students working alone, these fact was shown by research on technology-supported learning and teaching have clearly confirmed the general understanding that. Therefore, it should be a logical consequence to integrate communication and collaboration as a key factor into a distance study environment. However, this is not a trivial task from various points of view. For instance, for public universities in Germany studies have to be free of charge – which then raises the question, how to finance highly interactive small classes? Another problem is the professional restrictions of working distance students: their time budget is very limited. The consequence is that students typically have very limited contact to their peers and their tutors until the final examinations. The drop-out rates are extremely high. E-learning improved the situation substantially (even though poorly used by the teachers in many environments), but by far not enough. Former research showed, that students’ want more social learning application. This paper shows how social learning could be integrated in an existing technical and organizational infrastructure and so open up new possibilities to approach these challenges, and how it can be used to improve the situation substantially.
Birgit Feldmann

Using WCAG 2.0 and Heuristic Evaluation to Evaluate Accessibility in Educational Web Based Pages

In this paper, we presented an innovative way for a quick and comprehensive evaluation of different online educational websites by following and combining the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines 2.0, the standard ISO/IEC 24751 and heuristic evaluation approach. Five presentative web pages of the Learning Management System eCampus were evaluated by 14 participants classified into two groups with one usability expert in each group. Questionnaires containing twenty-five accessibility questions (=success criteria) were distributed among participants. Each participant was asked to evaluate only up to four success criteria. When completed, usability experts reviewed results and transformed them into final recommendations for improvements. Results revealed that none of five reviewed web pages reached level A for accessibility by the standard Web Content Accessibility Guidelines 2.0. On average, all five web pages reached the score 14 out of 25 in “pass” success criteria. In “fail” success criteria the average score was 4.80. The way of evaluation used in this study suggests possible implications in practice due to its simplicity and quickness.
Matjaž Debevc, Ines Kožuh, Simon Hauptman, Andrej Klembas, Julija Bele Lapuh, Andreas Holzinger

An Implementation of Online Learning and Course Management System Based on Facebook

In recent years, social networking websites play a very important role as the interactive platform between users as well as lecturers and learners. Thus, it would be a good idea if a learning management system can be built based on those social networking websites, such as Facebook. In this paper, we therefore proposed to construct an online learning and course management system, which can transform traditional learning management system functions to enable better interactions between lecturers and learners. Furthermore, the system has been implemented and the functions will be shown in the paper. We also concluded this paper with some future directions and suggestions about e-learning, learning management systems and social networking website.
I-Hsien Ting, Wei-Jie Wu, Hao-Ting Kao, David Wang

Using Cloud-Based Applications for Education, a Technical Interoperability Exploration for Online Document Editors

Innovation in technology-enhanced learning (TEL) is constantly evolving, and social media, MOOCs and big data are some of the technologies improving education through cloud environments. A cloud education environment (CEE) uses external cloud-based applications for learning activities. This paper will explore on technical interoperability using a semantic web solution for cloud-based tools (CBT) in an educational setting. It will focus on the use case of online document editors for learning activities and present a proposed generic ontology for interoperability of online document editor tools. This work describes a proposal using Web APIs for integration and interoperability. The focus of this paper is to provide a description of the common characteristics of online document editor tools, such as their resources, operations, and properties, which will create a definition of a generic vocabulary for further interoperability.
Rocael Hernández Rizzardini, Christian Gütl, Hector R. Amado-Salvatierra

Interconnection of Information Systems in Academic Environment

Case of University of Žilina in Žilina, Slovakia
Information systems play a crucial role in coordination of daily activities of academics. To maximize the effect of all information systems it is very important to interconnect them regarding their content. Moreover, it is very crucial to adapt them to new era which is continuously requiring implementing new information systems, e.g. filing hosting services, applications or social media into day-to-day life of academics. Since universities want to adapt to new technologies they implement various information systems which are becoming more complicated for understanding and subsequent use by academics. Therefore we focus our attention on analysing all the information systems at the Faculty of Management Science and Informatics and attempt of individuals to interconnect them. In our previous paper [22] we identified and analysed currently used KM tools at Faculty of Management Science and Informatics and proposed how these tools could be used more effectively or which ones could be introduced. In this paper we focus on information systems and investigate how they can be utilized even better than they are now.
Katarína Púčková, Lenka Tarábková, Anna Závodská



An Implementation of a Classroom Lighting System for the Improvement of Learning Efficiency

Existing LED-based classroom lighting systems too were designed to adjust color temperature and intensity of illumination, etc. for visual pleasantness and concentration of the teacher and students, but most of them are controlled manually, which causes inconvenience to users. To address this problem, it is necessary to develop an intelligent lighting control system that recognizes the locations and behaviors of the teacher and students automatically by means of sensors; grasps the current class context; and creates appropriate lighting environments accordingly. Thus, this study suggests a classroom lighting system to grasp the current class context to create appropriate lighting environments in recognition of the locations and behaviors of the teacher and students by means of sensors. Based on existing research findings, a standard index for lighting illumination effective for concentration depending on the subjects is designed. LED lighting whose color temperature, intensity of illumination, and on/off switch are adjustable in addition to hybrid sensors for context-awareness is produced. In addition, such elements as learning schedule, current class context, and lighting illumination are monitored real time on a user interface screen, or the lighting combination that the teacher desires is recreated with the learning schedule modifiable accordingly.
Hwa-Soo Lee, Sook-Youn Kwon, Kil Hee Kim, Kee-Sun Lee, Jae-Hyun Lim

E-learning Intervention for Stem Education: Developing Country Case Study

This paper reports an innovative and systemic approach to implementing ICT intervention to support enhancement of teaching and learning of STEM subjects in developing countries. The need for adopting ICT was 2 fold: a lack of availability of qualified STEM secondary teachers and a lack of quality teaching and learning resources to assist teachers and students. ICT was seen as being able to impact on both issues. The intervention involved developing sustainable network design including equipment choices, providing high quality e-learning resources and human resource development including teacher training. The intervention has gradually been accepted by teachers, students, and parents and institutionalized as a key feature of the secondary STEM education in the case study country.
Hitendra Pillay, Werner Kappus

Engineering Active Learning in 3D Virtual Worlds

To advance education in the 21st century, experts in neuroscience argue for more ‘active learning’ through experience. A practical implementation for such active, experiential and, we propose, multi-disciplinary learning is for students to consider, analyze, solve and make personal meaning from engaging problems. Collaborative problem-solving promotes communication involving creative and interpretive meaning-making, analysis and reflective judgement. Due to advances in computer technologies, educators can now consider a wider range of collaborative problems and extensive solutions which can be implemented in both real and virtual worlds. This paper will summarise five scenarios of virtual worlds from our research project: Second Life, OpenSim, OpenQwaq, Unity 3D and Unity 3D with Oculus Rift. In each virtual world participants from Japan, UK and USA have been engaged in remote collaborations to solve problem-based tasks requiring the programming and manouvering of virtual robots and real-world LEGO Mindstorms robots. Robot Mediated Interactions are analyzed to determine robot task complexity, student learning and task immersion. We have determined that for effective active learning involving 3D virtual worlds specifically focusing upon the development of beginner programming knowledge, the challenge is for educators to design tasks of zero (or close to zero) Task Fidelity and for students to become fully immersed within the tasks. The paper explains how this has been achieved, summarizes the benefits, obstacles, limitations and challenges of 3D virtual world implementations, and suggests future directions in educational research to engineer active learning in 3D virtual worlds.
Michael Vallance, Kenta Ibayashi, Yuta Goto

Integrating Synthetic and Analytical Aspects of Geometry Through Solving Problems Using a DGS

In this paper we document and analyze the extent to which the systematic use of a Dynamic Geometry System (DGS) in problem solving activities can become a means to integrating the synthetic and analytical aspects of geometry. We analyze some solution paths for a task of geometric construction, implemented by three participants at a problem-solving seminar. We identify limitations of purely analytical approaches as well as the usefulness of integrating analytical and synthetic techniques to construct or justify a solution path. We observed that solving problems of geometric construction without the support offered by digital technology reduces the opportunities that a solver has to interpret algebraic procedures from a geometric perspective and to construct meaning for mathematical ideas and concepts.
Carolina Guerrero-Ortiz, Aaron Reyes-Rodriguez, Hugo Espinosa-Perez

The Use of Digital Technology in Extending Mathematical Problem Solving Reasoning

The incorporation of digital technologies (both multiple purpose and mathematics action technologies) in mathematical learning environments can foster and extend discussions among learners and teachers even beyond class time. That is, learners not only keep reflecting on mathematical ideas or problems; but also they can review or consult related online resources. Similarly, the use of dynamic geometry systems provides affordances to construct dynamic models of tasks where learners can analyse how objects move within the configuration and formulate mathematical relations. In this report, we discuss three exemplars to characterize ways in which the use of technology extends mathematical reasoning in problem solving approaches. This information becomes important for teachers to value and frame the incorporation of technology in learning environments. At the end, some limitations of this approach are discussed.
Manuel Santos-Trigo, Isaid Reyes-Martínez, Daniel Aguilar-Magallón


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