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Canadian Initiative for Distance Education Research - CIDER

Canadian Initiative for Distance Education Research - CIDER

Owner: Terry Anderson

Group members: 41


The Canadian Initiative for Distance Education Research (CIDER) is a research initiative of the International Review of Research in Open and Distributed Learning (IRRODL) and Centre for Distance Education (CDE), Canada's largest graduate and professional distance education programming provider, at Athabasca University, Canada's Open University.

CIDER sponsors a variety of professional development activities designed to increase the quantity and quality of distance education research. CIDER's professional development scope is broad, ranging from learning and teaching application, issues of finance and access, the strategic use of technology in distance education settings, and other factors that influence distance education in Canada.

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CIDER receives support from Athabasca University and UNESCO.


Many research studies have highlighted the low completion rate and slow progress in PhD education. Universities strive to improve throughput and quality in their PhD education programs. In this study, the perceived problems of PhD education are investigated from PhD students’ points of view, and how an Information and Communication Technology Support System (ICTSS) may alleviate these problems. Data were collected through an online open questionnaire sent to the PhD students at the Department of (the institution’s name has been removed during the double-blind review) with a 59% response rate. The results revealed a number of problems in the PhD education and highlighted how online technology can support PhD education and facilitate interaction and communication, affect the PhD students’ satisfaction, and have positive impacts on PhD students’ stress. A system was prototyped, in order to facilitate different types of online interaction through accessing a set of online and structured resources and specific communication channels. Although the number of informants was not large, the result of the study provided some rudimentary ideas that refer to interaction problems and how an online ICTSS may facilitate PhD education by providing distance and collaborative learning, and PhD students’ self-managed communication.

Mon, 16 May 2016

This paper aims to analyse the trends and contents of flipped classroom research based on 20 articles that report on flipped learning classroom initiatives from 2013–2015. The content analysis was used as a methodology to investigate methodologies, area of studies, technology tools or online platforms, the most frequently keywords used and works cited references, impacts for students’ learning, and flipped classroom challenges. The results of the analysis were interpreted using descriptive analysis, percentages, and frequencies. This analysis found that various fields were practiced in the flipped classroom approach, and some technology tools were used as the online platform for its practice. Analysis of the impacts showed that flipped classroom brought positive impacts toward students’ learning activities such as achievement, motivation, engagement, and interaction. Several issues in this discussion become implications that can be taken into consideration for future research. Some challenges found in applying flipped classroom are needed to be addressed by future researchers, such as suitability of the flipped classroom for poor quality of video lectures and untrained instructor. This study also becomes an implication for government or policymakers to determine the flipped classroom as a contemporary model to be implemented in teaching-learning activities for higher education, even K-12 students.

Mon, 16 May 2016

The purpose of this study was to assess the status of e-learning in public universities in Kenya. Data were collected using questionnaires administered to both students and lecturers randomly sampled from seven public universities. Questionnaire responses were triangulated with interviews from key informants and focus group discussions (FGDs). Data were analyzed qualitatively and through use of descriptive statistics. Findings revealed that e-learning is at its infant stage in universities in Kenya. Majority of universities lacked senate approved e-learning policies to guide structured implementation. A few lecturers (32%) and students (35%) used e-learning and few courses (10%) were offered online. Majority of online uploaded modules (87%) were simply lecture notes and not interactive. Again, universities in Kenya lacked requisite ICT infrastructure and skills. The study recommends that universities partner with the private sector to improve ICT infrastructure, build capacity, and standardize e-learning programs in the country.

Mon, 16 May 2016

There is a substantial increase in the use of learning management systems (LMSs) to support teaching and learning activities in higher education institutions. Despite their benefits, students use them to a limited extend due to a number of factors influencing behaviors. This study executed a three-tier use model to examine the predictors of students’ behavioral intention to use LMSs at a two-year post-secondary military school in Turkey, and the participants consisted of 155 students. The data were collected through an online questionnaire and analyzed through Pearson correlation coefficients and linear regression analyses. Results showed that multimedia instruction had a direct influence on perceived usefulness and perceived ease of use, while interactivity had a direct influence only on perceived satisfaction. Perceived satisfaction was also affected by perceived usefulness and perceived ease of use. Perceived ease of use exerted a direct influence on perceived usefulness, as well. Moreover, perceived usefulness had a great influence on behavioral intention to use LMSs. As a final point, self-efficacy did not take a position in the model due to its insignificant relationships with the other constructs. It is suggested that an increase in the multimedia features and interactivity of the system could lead to higher perceived usefulness and ease of use among learners, and both factors add to learners’ perceived satisfaction which in turn increases their engagement.

Mon, 16 May 2016

Major study of adaptive learning finds inconclusive results about its ability to improve outcomes and lower costs, but use at two-year colleges and in remedial courses shows potential. Inside Higher Ed
2 days ago
New initiatives at university systems show the maturation of efforts to increase the use of open educational resources. Inside Higher Ed
June 22, 2016 - 10:30am
This paper revisits and builds upon a prominent theme in First Monday’s 2008 “Critical perspectives on Web 2.0” special issue: exploration and critique of the claim that Web 2.0 “… provides novel opportunities for the articulation of individual and collective social power by enhancing participation in media production and cultural expression” (Zimmer, 2008). This article refreshes the […]
June 19, 2016 - 9:31pm
It has been more than 10 years since the publication of “What is Web 2.0?”, Tim O’Reilly’s influential declaration of Web 2.0’s practical and conceptual underpinnings (O’Reilly, 2005). In 2008, First Monday published a special issue on “Critical perspectives on Web 2.0” (Zimmer, 2008) bringing together a diverse group of scholars to “expose, explore and explain the […]
June 19, 2016 - 9:04pm

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