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Gender perceptions of a WebCT course

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conference contribution
posted on 2017-12-06, 00:00 authored by Beth Tennent
With an increasing emphasis being placed on using technology to enhance students learning, many universities are using web-based approaches to teaching and learning. It has been argued (Anderson, 1996) that online learning potentially provides meaningful learning activities. O’Malley (1999) argues that often new educational technologies, such as web-based learning, are implemented without any assessment of its impact on students. In many universities, the use of face-to-face lectures combined with tutorials or workshops is regarded as the preferred, if not only, delivery medium for materials. However, some Australian universities, designated as centres for distance education, have delivered courses and programs to students who cannot, or choose not to attend face to face lectures, through correspondence programs for over fifty years. Using web-based technologies is of great interest to these institutions as it not only has the potential to improve the delivery and enhance students’ learning - it can potentially and substantially reduce the cost of distance delivery. What remains unclear is whether this type of interaction via web based tools such as WebCT is perceived by both male and female students to be beneficial. It may be the case that factors other than gender play a more significant role in determining students’ perception of web-based learning. This research examines factors such as enrolment status, age and gender. This work reports the finding of a study conducted with first year students in an accounting program in a regional Australian university that has extensive experience in distance education. Our initial findings support the proposition that gender does significantly affect students’ perceptions in all cases. In some instances, for example, whether or not they access a discussion list, age appears to be more important than gender and nature of enrolment – external versus internal – appears to be more important than gender. When examining enrolment patterns and gender, externally enrolled females are twice as likely to access discussion lists as either internally enrolled males or females.

Funding

Category 1 - Australian Competitive Grants (this includes ARC, NHMRC)

History

Start Page

1

End Page

12

Number of Pages

12

Start Date

2003-01-01

ISBN-10

1876674660

Location

Rockhampton, Qld.

Publisher

Women in Research, CQU

Place of Publication

Rockhampton, Qld.

Peer Reviewed

  • Yes

Open Access

  • No

External Author Affiliations

Faculty of Business and Informatics;

Era Eligible

  • Yes

Name of Conference

Central Queensland University. Women in Research. Conference

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