Constructivism in Synchronous and Asynchronous Virtual Learning Environments for a Research Methods Course

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Journal Article
International Journal of Virtual and Personal Learning Environments, 2011, 2 (3), pp. 50 - 63
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Virtuallearningisapopularteachingmodality,andithasbeenreportedinresearchthatthereisnosignificant difference in academic outcome as compared with face-to-face courses. Not allresearchers agree with this assertion and some claim it is more difficult to teach math-oriented subjects online. Given that educational psychology theories are effective for teaching quantitative topics in the face-to-face modality, this study proposes and tests methodsfor virtual learning.Constructivism learning theory is applied using knowledge managementprinciplestoteachanonlinemasters-levelresearchmethods courseatanAustralianuniversity. Asynchronous and synchronoustools are used in the VLE, and contrasted in a controlled experiment. The hypothesisisstudent grades will be significantly higher when the constructivist instructional method is applied to the synchronous VLE.
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