Employability is a key policy imperative in higher education and within this agenda, the purpose of this tool is to improve students’ confidence for interviews, through an authentic learning experience within a virtual environment. This is based on sound pedagogical principles of experiential and experimenal learning, which allows the student to practise their interview skills in a safe digital space. Developmental feedback is embedded throughout the learning tool in order to facilitate individualized learning and learner empowerment through self-directed study (Hase and Kenyon, 2015).
Herringtom et al (2010) developed a typology of authentic learning, which is widely used for analyzing authentic online learning using emerging technologies (Bozalek et al, 2015). They argue that the authentic context of learning is not simply about providing real world examples for the learner to engage with, but is an all-embracing context, which provides both the purpose for learning and the motivation for participation. As such, this immersive learning tool puts the learner in the position of the interviewee, where they are required to record answers to questions, emulating an authentic interview situation. Professional actors were employed to film vignettes so that the learner is able to observe other candidates. Learning activities are constructed around the learner recordings and vignettes to help the learner to analyze performance. Aditional resources are embedded throughout to facilitate action planning and self-directed learning.
ALFIE combines pedagogical knowledge, subject matter and technological expertise to create a unique learning experience, which facilitates a range of learning styles to engage students from diverse backgrounds and learning preferences. A wide selection of interactive learning activities were carefully constructed to maximize and motivate student engagement and encourage students to engage in active learning. Throughout the learning course, the learner is guided to complete formative assessments and is offered opportunities for remeditation and reflection. Although the learning course is designed as a stand-alone resource, it can also be embedded within a curriculum and there are opportunities to use the learning activities for collaborative learning.
The innovation of this tool lies in the technical design, effectively using existing platforms and combining them in new ways to create a distinct, bespoke learning environment, with embedded in-depth learner analytics for evaluation of learning gain. The tool also records student responses and completion rates which can be retrieved for reflective learning. This presentation will provide insights into the technological approaches and the instructional design strategy in designing and developing this authentic learning course.
Bozalek, V. Ng’ambi, D., Wood, D., Herrington, J., Hardman, J and Amory, A. (eds) (2015) Activity Theory, Authentic Learning and Emerging Technologies: Towards a Transformative Higher Education Pedagogy. Oxon, Routledge.
Hase, S and Kenyon, C. (2015) Self-Determined Learning: Heutagogy in Practice. London, Bloomsbury.
Herrigton, J., Reeves, T.C. and Oliver, R. (2010) A Guide to Authentic e-Learning. New York, Routledge.