This paper is a qualitative case study analysis of the development of a fully online learning community of graduate students through arts-based community building activities. With increasing numbers and types of online learning spaces, it is incumbent upon educators to continue to push the edge of what best practices look like in digital learning environments. In digital learning spaces, instructors can no longer be seen as purveyors of content knowledge to be examined at the end of a set course by a final test or exam. The rapid and fluid dissemination of information via Web 3.0 demands that we reshape our approach to teaching and learning, from one that is content-focused to one that is process-driven. Rather than having instructors as formal leaders, today’s digital learning environments require us to share expertise, as it is the collective experiences and knowledge of all students together with the instructors that help to create a very different kind of learning community. This paper focuses on innovations pursued in a 36 hour 12 week graduate course in higher education entitled “Critical and Reflective Practice”. The authors chronicle their journey to developing a fully online learning community (FOLC) by emphasizing the elements of social, cognitive, emotional and digital spaces that form a moving interplay through the community. In this way, students embrace anywhere anytime learning and often take the learning, as well as the relationships they build and skills they acquire, beyond the digital class into real world situations. We argue that in order to increase student online engagement, pedagogical approaches need to stem from two primary elements, both creativity and critical reflection, that are essential pillars upon which instructors can co-design learning environments with students. The theoretical framework for the paper is based on the interaction and interdependence of Creativity, Intuition, Critical Reflection, Social Constructivism and FOLCs. By leveraging students’ embedded familiarity with a wide variety of technologies, this case study of a graduate level course on critical reflection in education, examines how relationships, quality of work produced, and student engagement can improve by using creative and imaginative pedagogical strategies. The authors examine their professional pedagogical strategies through the lens that the teacher acts as facilitator, guide and co-designer. In a world where students can easily search for and organize information as self-directed processes, creativity and connection can at times be lost in the digitized course environment. The paper concludes by posing further questions as to how institutions of higher education may be challenged to restructure their credit granting courses into more flexible modules, and how students need to be considered an important part of assessment and evaluation strategies. By introducing creativity and critical reflection as central features of the digital learning spaces, notions of best practices in digital teaching and learning emerge.
The underlying principle behind the harmonization in international education does not solely aim for the comparability but also the compatibility of outputs produced. The international standard in the different professions particularly in engineering defines the required graduate attributes to attain suitable qualifications and recognitions. This study described the language practices of the Electronics Engineering students of Bulacan State University, Philippines who will be deployed for their internship program. The purpose of the study was achieved by determining the language proficiency of the students in terms of speaking, listening, reading, and writing, and checking the adherence of the University to the commitment of intensifying community building for the Association of Southeast Asian Nation Vision 2020. The analysis of variance of the variables defined the significance between the causal variables and dependent variables. Thus, this study identified the mechanism that would regulate language practices in the Electronics Engineering program.
The concept of community building started in 1994 in Taiwan. After years of development, it fostered the notion of active local resident participation in community issues as co-operators, instead of minions. Participatory design gives participants more control in the decision-making process, helps to reduce the friction caused by arguments and assists in bringing different parties to consensus. This results in an increase in the efficiency of projects run in the community. Therefore, the participation of local residents is key to the success of community building. This study applied participatory design to develop plans for the reuse of deserted spaces in the community from the first stage of brainstorming for design ideas, making creative models to be employed later, through to the final stage of construction. After conducting a series of participatory designed activities, it aimed to integrate the different opinions of residents, develop a sense of belonging and reach a consensus. Besides this, it also aimed at building the residents’ awareness of their responsibilities for the environment and related issues of sustainable development. By reviewing relevant literature and understanding the history of related studies, the study formulated a theory. It took the “2012-2014 Changhua County Community Planner Counseling Program” as a case study to investigate the implementation process of participatory design. Research data are collected by document analysis, participants’ observation and in-depth interviews. After examining the three elements of “Design Participation”, “Construction Participation”, and” Follow–up Maintenance Participation” in the case, the study emerged with a promising conclusion: Maintenance works were carried out better compared to common public works. Besides this, maintenance costs were lower. Moreover, the works that residents were involved in were more creative. Most importantly, the community characteristics could be easy be recognized.