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The impact of using wiki technology in learning biology among Al-Baha University students: perceptions, knowledge, e-learning skills and attitudes

The impact of using wiki technology in learning biology among Al-Baha University students: perceptions, knowledge, e-learning skills and attitudes
The impact of using wiki technology in learning biology among Al-Baha University students: perceptions, knowledge, e-learning skills and attitudes
The use of e-learning in teaching and learning is seen as an alternative to traditional learning and produces knowledge through a variety of academic activities in many Higher Education institutions. The importance of this research arises from the need to provide a blueprint for future strategic developments in e-learning in Saudi universities, and thus improve policy and practice for the betterment of student learning. The present study aims to determine the impact of wiki technology on learning in the subject of biology among Al-Baha University (ABU) students through their interactions with each other.
The study was divided into three stages: before, during and after the use of the wiki. Collaborative learning and constructivist theory was applied in this study in relation to the learning environment for the participants and used the wiki platform as a learning tool (http://wikibaha.wikispaces.com). The strategy of the current study was based on the application of the case study as a research approach. The study focused on individuals and teams at ABU and sought to investigate the students‘ outcomes: their perceptions and knowledge about wiki, the extent of acquiring e-learning skills, achieving biological knowledge, and their attitudes towards the wiki. These five elements were measured through five different instruments. Mixed methods approaches were used to triangulate the results of the study and collect both quantitative and qualitative data from students. The qualitative and quantitative data were collected by using two types of questionnaire and weekly tests for the quantitative data, and by using interviews and e-comments to collect the qualitative data. The data in its entirety was analysed ?en masse‘ using a thematic framework. In order to integrate two different types of data in one analytical approach, the researcher qualitised the quantitative data. This process of ?qualitising‘ followed the technique of Tashakorri and Teddlie (1998). Hesse-Biber and Leavy (2010), state that the term qualitising refers to the process of converting quantitative data that can be analysed qualitatively. Therefore, quantitative data in research questions 2, 3 and 4 were firstly analysed using the SPSS programme, before being subjected to qualitative analysis. The finding of the study showed that students had positive attitudes and perceptions toward the wiki; these perceptions and attitudes varied from one student to another because of the different experiences using the wiki. The findings also revealed that the use of the wiki helped students to acquire e-learning skills through the use of the Internet and other electronic sources. With respect to students‘ achievement of biological knowledge, the results revealed that the majority of students believed that the written and readable information on wiki pages had a major impact on improving their knowledge of biology. This reflects that students tended to learn biology using wiki pages more than by using the traditional learning method of a ?lecture‘. Finally, the study aims to provide evidence that can help to implement change to improve conditions and learning opportunities in Saudi Arabian universities
University of Southampton
Alzahrani, Ibraheem
4e3750ae-4145-4ec0-8ca2-c2ce9c80071c
Alzahrani, Ibraheem
4e3750ae-4145-4ec0-8ca2-c2ce9c80071c
Woollard, William
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Grace, Marcus
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(2013) The impact of using wiki technology in learning biology among Al-Baha University students: perceptions, knowledge, e-learning skills and attitudes. University of Southampton, Southampton Education School, Doctoral Thesis, 315pp.

Record type: Thesis (Doctoral)

Abstract

The use of e-learning in teaching and learning is seen as an alternative to traditional learning and produces knowledge through a variety of academic activities in many Higher Education institutions. The importance of this research arises from the need to provide a blueprint for future strategic developments in e-learning in Saudi universities, and thus improve policy and practice for the betterment of student learning. The present study aims to determine the impact of wiki technology on learning in the subject of biology among Al-Baha University (ABU) students through their interactions with each other.
The study was divided into three stages: before, during and after the use of the wiki. Collaborative learning and constructivist theory was applied in this study in relation to the learning environment for the participants and used the wiki platform as a learning tool (http://wikibaha.wikispaces.com). The strategy of the current study was based on the application of the case study as a research approach. The study focused on individuals and teams at ABU and sought to investigate the students‘ outcomes: their perceptions and knowledge about wiki, the extent of acquiring e-learning skills, achieving biological knowledge, and their attitudes towards the wiki. These five elements were measured through five different instruments. Mixed methods approaches were used to triangulate the results of the study and collect both quantitative and qualitative data from students. The qualitative and quantitative data were collected by using two types of questionnaire and weekly tests for the quantitative data, and by using interviews and e-comments to collect the qualitative data. The data in its entirety was analysed ?en masse‘ using a thematic framework. In order to integrate two different types of data in one analytical approach, the researcher qualitised the quantitative data. This process of ?qualitising‘ followed the technique of Tashakorri and Teddlie (1998). Hesse-Biber and Leavy (2010), state that the term qualitising refers to the process of converting quantitative data that can be analysed qualitatively. Therefore, quantitative data in research questions 2, 3 and 4 were firstly analysed using the SPSS programme, before being subjected to qualitative analysis. The finding of the study showed that students had positive attitudes and perceptions toward the wiki; these perceptions and attitudes varied from one student to another because of the different experiences using the wiki. The findings also revealed that the use of the wiki helped students to acquire e-learning skills through the use of the Internet and other electronic sources. With respect to students‘ achievement of biological knowledge, the results revealed that the majority of students believed that the written and readable information on wiki pages had a major impact on improving their knowledge of biology. This reflects that students tended to learn biology using wiki pages more than by using the traditional learning method of a ?lecture‘. Finally, the study aims to provide evidence that can help to implement change to improve conditions and learning opportunities in Saudi Arabian universities

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More information

Published date: December 2013
Organisations: University of Southampton, Southampton Education School

Identifiers

Local EPrints ID: 363132
URI: http://eprints.soton.ac.uk/id/eprint/363132
PURE UUID: 7bde29df-6815-4195-8bbc-04d011e52284
ORCID for Marcus Grace: ORCID iD orcid.org/0000-0002-1949-1765

Catalogue record

Date deposited: 31 Mar 2014 09:38
Last modified: 20 Nov 2019 01:39

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Contributors

Author: Ibraheem Alzahrani
Thesis advisor: William Woollard
Thesis advisor: Marcus Grace ORCID iD

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