Evaluating the development of virtual learning environments in higher and further education

Christine Urquhart, Siân Spink, Rhian Thomas, Alison Yeoman, Jane Durbin, Janet Turner, Roger Fenton, Chris Armstrong

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Abstract

Discusses some of the reasons why use of Virtual Learning Environments (VLEs) sometimes sticks at an initial stage of implementation. The paper is based on the findings from the JISC-funded JUSTEIS project on the monitoring of user behaviour with electronic information services in further and higher education in the UK. Qualitative analysis of interview data from over 550 students and over 50 academic staff (2001-2003) showed that individualization of learning was important to students. Many staff were unclear about the learning benefits of VLEs, and functions such as peer-peer group support and group learning were rarely used. Concludes that institutional strategies for VLE development need to be focused far more on disciplinary learning needs and priorities.
Original languageEnglish
Pages157-169
Number of pages13
Publication statusPublished - 2004

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