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Title: Using participative design of educational technology to investigate students' beliefs about learning English as a foreign language
Author: Paizan, Delfina Cristina
ISNI:       0000 0004 5359 3292
Awarding Body: UCL Institute of Education
Current Institution: UCL Institute of Education (IOE)
Date of Award: 2014
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This study investigates students’ construction of the English for Specific Purposes (ESP) classroom, that is, ESP teaching and learning, and uses the Participatory Design (PD) approach to the design of educational technology as a means to improve and refine our understanding of their construction of the classroom. The study was carried out with Brazilian university students on a Computer Science course. Following general guidelines of the PD approach, the researcher invited an ESP teacher, a number of students, and a Software Engineer to collaboratively design a Web Portal to support ESP teaching and learning. The research questions were: (i) how do students construct the ESP classroom? and (ii) to what extent does students´ involvement in the process of designing educational technology for ESP bring to light different elements of this construction? Data were collected in two phases. Firstly, an initial interview was carried out and then records of students´ participation in the workshops, their entries in an online diary and a final interview were collected. A bottom up approach was adopted to categorisation of the beliefs constituting the students’ construction of the classroom, and the analytical framework outlined by Benson and Lor (1999) was used to help to interpret and group these classifications. The final model of the students’ construction identified four groups of beliefs, clustered around the ideas of accumulation, communication, autonomy and unease with what the ESP course offered. The use of Participative Design as a method to facilitate the collection of data about the students’ construction of the classroom was found to be effective in enabling the research to move from an description based on students’ de-contextualised descriptions of the classroom in the initial interviews, to a more articulated and detailed level of description that emerged from involvement with the design task.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available
Keywords: London Knowledge Lab