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Title: Personalising the learning of young children with the use of ICT : an action research case in a Greek primary school
Author: Benetou, Evdokia
Awarding Body: University of Warwick
Current Institution: University of Warwick
Date of Award: 2013
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Abstract:
This thesis is an account of an action research project undertaken in a Greek primary private school. The project aimed at personalising the students’ learning with the use of ICT. The project ran for three consecutive school years and involved students (twenty-six in year 1, sixteen in year 2, and fifty-one in year 3) and, their parents (in years 1 and 2). The students were eight-years old when the project started. The focus of the innovation concerned the teaching and learning of English as a Foreign Language. The project was an attempt to create a partnership with students and to offer opportunities for students to make choices in their learning. In year 1 teaching methods, including argumentative processes, learning task design and assessment processes, were re-designed and students were encouraged to engage in collaborative learning. All these changes were sustained in year 2 and the use of ICT, including online discussion, was introduced to enhance and extend collaboration and learning. The use of on line ‘chat’ was extended to parents as a way of communication with school. All these innovations were sustained in year 3 and further exploration of students’ and parents’ perceptions of learning with technology carried out. Action research is employed as a methodological approach in this study. In particular, the study reports on cycles of implementation and reflection carried out over three years. A variety of methods were used. Diaries were selected to record situations, questionnaires to access the perceptions of the children and parents, and chat logs and interviews used to explore these perceptions in greater depth. The mix of methods enabled comparison and contrast not just between data derived by different methods but by different sources as well, i.e. parents and children. The main theoretical concepts explored in this thesis are Personalised Learning, ICT use, and Collaboration. This research project sees Personalised Learning as the ‘focal innovation’ and ICT use as embedded within personalisation. Collaboration is considered a fundamental construct in both personalisation and the embedded use of ICT. This thesis asks whether personalisation is a coherent concept and whether it can be sustained with the use of ICT. It finds that personalised learning can offer a coherent organising principle for pedagogic reform, and can be defined by its concern for collective co-production of knowledge, student voice, assessment for learning, learning-to-learn strategies, and student centeredness. Personalised learning and ICT are recognised as a good match and personalised learning is seen to need ICT in order to be sustained. However, innovation requires time and evaluation of outcomes is value laden. The thesis finds action research to be an appropriate methodology for curriculum reform.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID: uk.bl.ethos.582460  DOI: Not available
Keywords: LB1501 Primary Education
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