As higher education pivots towards a digital provision, there is growing recognition of the potential for technology to enhance learning, teaching and assessment, particularly so in engineering education where technologies manifest as physical artefacts of learning, embedded in its epistemological underpinnings. Yet, the literature on mature learners suggests a technological gap associated with age can impede learning. We examine this anomaly with a specific subset of mature learners. We explore, through lenses of andragogy and constructivism, the experiences of mature, part-time engineering students in using technology to enhance learning. A cohort with limited computing skills or familiarity with digital learning were provided with co-created digital learning objects to assist in learning complex engineering software. A thematic analysis of student feedback implied that they perceived their experiences of using these supports with an authentic assessment to be positive. The students reported that co-creation of these supports with an authentic assessment to be positive. The students reported that co-creation of these supports with faculty encouraged engagement. Furthermore, they felt that the approach taken enhanced achievement of learning outcomes, digital literacy, professional confidence, self-direction and likelihood of engaging further in their education.
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McCann, Audrey and MacMahon, Cormac
"Practical Lessons in Andragogy and Constructivism: an Exploratory Study of Mature, Part-time Undergraduate Engineering Learner Experiences of Digital Learning Objects,"
Irish Journal of Academic Practice:
1, Article 5.
Available at: https://arrow.tudublin.ie/ijap/vol9/iss1/5