Accessing the Student Experience concerning blended learning activities in English and Creative Writing: LESSONS LEARNT
The first lesson learnt was the value of taking the approach of ‘students as co-creators’ – recruiting participants to be active agents, rather than just eliciting feedback. This resulted in full and frank criticisms to enable redesign of the module omitting mistakes in the pilot.
The second lesson was a reminder of the value of the interpretivist framework: to remind ourselves that the research was not to find out what actually happened, but rather to find out what different students perceived to be happening.
Thirdly, there is an enormous difference between creating on-line materials for distance learning (intended to be more stand-alone) and blended learning. Complexity of activities must be avoided: an aspect of the new digital literacy is that instructions should be unnecessary, ‘what-should-be-done’ should be intuitive, tasks should be self-evident.
Finally, it is necessary to be cautious of asking students to do online group work, we should not make students dependent on other students: even formative tasks asking students to comment/collaborate in order to produce a Wiki. In this pod the activities were all deliberately not summative, but this still did not remove the unease of having to work with others who have different agendas and needs.