3-4 mins Introduction: Introduction to study and the use of the Flipboard app
15 min Discussion: Discussion to focus on the key findings of the project and their applicability and transfer-ability to other disciples and teaching contexts. This will include a demonstration of the app itself and can be fully interactive.
2 mins. Summary and close.
This session relates directly to Participation through Learning Technology in that it demonstrates and discusses how a content curation app can be used in a specific learning and teaching context in partnership with learners with the explicit aim of creating active engagement and helping develop critical digital literacy skills.
Session content: evaluation and reflection
The project focused on the use of a digital content curation app, Flipboard, in a range of modules at different levels across the four campuses of the Ulster University Business School. Students were encouraged to use the new resource and engage with it on a regular basis to enhance and broaden their knowledge of the subject specific area. Directed guidance was given on a weekly basis where some highlighted articles were showcased towards the end of each class. Students were then encouraged to access the app and read further between lectures and in preparation for active learning seminars.
The overall aim was to ascertain the perceived effectiveness of using digital content curation apps in active learning environments, on student learning and engagement. Structured active learning seminars were designed around subject specific content in the digital magazines housed within the Flipboard app (see attached exemplar seminar schedule outline). The effectiveness of this learning innovation was examined through a range of techniques including student focus groups and staff reflective logs. Four student focus groups were conducted to gather in-depth qualitative data from those students who had had the technology incorporated into their modules. These were analysed in Nvivo, with three emergent themes and 12 sub themes. Staff also recorded their reflections of the active learning sessions using a reflective record pro-forma, consistent with an action research approach. These were analysed with a manual content analysis, where key themes were identified as being common to all tutors and divergent themes identified. On the whole the staff found the app to support active learning, but identified a few issues in relation to students with either no device, allowing class time to read the articles and at first it was slow to get students engaged in the discussion.
According to the findings, students considered the Flipboard sessions to be beneficial in adding value to their learning by bridging the gap between personal experience, industry/employment/the real world and theory. They unanimously agreed that learning was enhanced through group discussion and collaboration. They further suggested that they would like to have had the opportunity to research their own material on wider topics, believing this would help develop research skills required for final year. Ultimately the research revealed that the use of the app certainly encouraged a more active approach to student learning, but that there were some practical recommendations that might be implemented to maximise the impact on student learning and engagement. This session will share the main findings with participants, indicating transfer-ability across other disciplines.
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Resources for participants
It would be useful to have access to the Flipboard app during this session. session. The Flipboard app usually comes pre-loaded on apple and android devices, but if not you can download it freely from the apple store or Google Play Store. There is also a website service for PC/laptops but the mobile app has a more user friendly feel. Once you have registered if you can follow either one or all off the following magazines:
“My Marketing Ideas” by Clare Carruthers
“Event Management” by Nikki McQuillan
“Global Marketing” by Christine Wightman
You can find them by searching for the “curator” by name or the “magazine” title by name.