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Personalized Blended Learning via New Media and Formative Assessment

Peter Clutterbuck and Daniel Lewis
University of Queensland, Business School, Brisbane, Australia

Abstract—In this paper we describe an ongoing multi-year project to improve the learning outcomes in relation to advanced Excel competence for first year undergraduate business students within an Information Systems (IS) course with very large enrolment. The students study within a blended learning environment that combines face-to-face and online content delivery. The first stage of the project defined the learning outcomes and pedagogical framework for teaching end-user Excel programming to the students. The theory utilized for this stage was the Four Resources Literacy Education model. The second stage involved the development and delivery of additional scaffolding of pedagogical content via audio/visual (MP4) streaming/download. The most recent stage comprises a trial in which formative assessment of each student’s construction of sophisticated Excel formulas is comprehensively facilitated via a purpose-built Excel workbook that records a student’s attempts in relation to the production of a specific formula. This record is then analyzed by teaching staff who can then more accurately assess how a student is building knowledge and experience in the professional use of Excel. This in turn provides more relevant and accurate feedback to each student and also better informs ongoing teaching messages delivered to the total student cohort. In overall terms, the results indicate that students positively respond to the approaches primarily because of the increased personal autonomy of the audio/visual instructional content, and because of the increased level of dialogue created by the digitally facilitated formative assessment feedback. 
Index Terms—formative assessment, blended learning, end-user programming, Four Resources model, classroom video pedagogy

Cite: Peter Clutterbuck and Daniel Lewis, "Personalized Blended Learning via New Media and Formative Assessment," International Journal of Learning and Teaching, Vol. 5, No. 1, pp. 12-18, March 2019. doi: 10.18178/ijlt.5.1.12-18