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5.3 EDUCATIONAL SCIENCES, *training
Lecturing on the Irish Standards Based Apprenticeship Programme which is a prescribed vocational course with a set time limit brought various concerns regarding the course. These concerns included the restrictive time limit, the delivery modes and the level of student learning. Having to present course theory notes in a very limited time period left little exam preparation time with the possibility of the students engaging in a surface approach to learning. Being cognizant of these issues an action research cycle was commenced in an effort to improve the situation and provide time for the learners’ engagement with the material. This involved writing a complete set of new lecture notes, presenting the students with booklets and changing the mode of delivery. This enabled a reduction of the delivery time for the theory modules. There were unexpected developments such as apparent student disengagement and absenteeism from lectures. A process of reflection was engaged upon and in a second action research cycle adjustments were made to the booklets and the corresponding PowerPoint presentations in an effort to encourage more student participation. Initial results indicate a positive impact on grades. Further work needs to be done in terms of engaging the students learning beyond a surface approach and moving towards a deep approach to learning. This is the hope for the future as there is now more time to develop such teaching practices.
Bates,E. Engaging in an action research cycle on the Irish Standards Based apprenticeship to provide time for learners’ engagement. Proceedings of the EDULEARN 11 Conference, Gran Hotel Princess Sofia Hotel, Barcelona, July 4 – 6, 2011.