NotesFAQContact Us
Collection
Advanced
Search Tips
Back to results
Peer reviewed Peer reviewed
Direct linkDirect link
ERIC Number: EJ1028702
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2014
Pages: 14
Abstractor: As Provided
ISBN: N/A
ISSN: ISSN-0263-5143
Engineering Students' Experiences from Physics Group Work in Learning Labs
Mellingsaeter, Magnus Strøm
Research in Science & Technological Education, v32 n1 p21-34 2014
Background: This paper presents a case study from a physics course at a Norwegian university college, investigating key aspects of a group-work project, so-called learning labs, from the participating students' perspective. Purpose: In order to develop these learning labs further, the students' perspective is important. Which aspects are essential for how the students experience the learning labs, and how do these aspects relate to the emergence of occurrences termed joint workspace, i.e. the maintenance of content-related dialogues within the group? Programme description: First year mechanical engineering students attended the learning labs as a compulsory part of the physics course. The student groups were instructed to solve physics problems using the interactive whiteboard and then submit their work as whiteboard files. Sample: One group of five male students was followed during their work in these learning labs through one term. Design and methods: Data were collected as video recordings and fieldwork observation. In this paper, a focus group interview with the students was the main source of analysis. The interpretations of the interview data were compared with the video material and the fieldwork observations. Results: The results show that the students' overall experience with the learning labs was positive. They did, however, point to internal aspects of conflicting common and personal goals, which led to a group-work dynamics that seemed to inhibit elaborate discussions and collaboration. The students also pointed to external aspects, such as a close temporal proximity between lectures and exercises, which also seemed to inhibit occurrences termed joint workspace. Conclusions: In order to increase the likelihood of a joint workspace throughout the term in the learning labs, careful considerations have to be made with regard to timing between lectures and exercises, but also with regard to raising the students' awareness about shared and personal goals.
Routledge. Available from: Taylor & Francis, Ltd. 325 Chestnut Street Suite 800, Philadelphia, PA 19106. Tel: 800-354-1420; Fax: 215-625-2940; Web site: http://www.tandf.co.uk/journals
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: Higher Education; Postsecondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Norway