Year

2005

Degree Name

Doctor of Education

Department

Faculty of Education

Abstract

There is an expectation that lecturers should be equipped with the skills needed to apply technology to support and enhance learning in their subjects. For many lecturers, the increasing emphasis on the use of ICT for research and teaching can be threatening, but these fears can be eased if professional development is supportive and ongoing, and provided in flexible, appropriate and adaptable ways. This study focused on collaboration strategies employed by four lecturers and two instructional designers (IDs) as they worked together to develop online learning environments as well as other types of learning resources. It focuses on two case studies and describes the roles that the two IDs played in facilitating the professional development of lecturers that were constructing e-Learning environments. The findings suggest that the lecturers needed ongoing support, advice and technical assistance for an extended period of time. Lecturers who are novices in using ICT for learning, should be encouraged to attend basic ICT training programs before working with IDs and ICT experts to design e-Learning resources for their subjects. Providing technical training by ICT experts enables lecturers to see the benefits and potential of ICT in learning and gives them the confidence to plan effective e-Learning environments. The results are consistent with previous research findings, stressing the need for professional (IDs, ICT experts and lecturers) to collaborate and share their ideas, knowledge, expertise and skills in order to plan and design effective and meaningful learning environments. It is also important for IDs to explain their role clearly and outline the type of support and assistance they would provide during the design process. Lecturers who collaborated closely with the ID/ICT experts gained more skills and were prepared to use ICT in learning while those who spent less time with them were less confident and had to attend ICT training courses during the session. This study demonstrated that having regular group meetings during the design process, receiving individual ICT support, having a good rapport between members of the design team helped to decrease lecturers' concerns and ICT problems. This study has enabled the researcher to develop a team collaboration model for planning and designing e-Learning resources that would be piloted in tertiary institutions in Papua New Guinea. The findings, also contributes to the research literature about the design processes needed to improve the quality of learning resources. As team members share and learn from each other's experiences and expertise, they create authentic and student centred learning environments.

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