Authentic Learning – Does It Improve Pass Rates and Student Satisfaction?
Keywords:Authentic learning, higher education, student satisfaction, pass rates, real world
Learning by doing is thought to be one of the most effective ways to learn (Lombardi, 2007). This article explores the findings of a small scale study on one module about whether pass rates and student satisfaction can be improved by introducing authentic learning methods into the classroom by changing the teaching and assessment methods used on a Masters in Business Administration (MBA) module (Accounting and Finance for Decision Making). The pass rates pre and post the changes were monitored and also the student satisfaction scores. Comparisons were made between the results three semesters prior and three semesters post the changes, reviewing quantitative and qualitative data from 180 students.
Leeds Beckett University has undertaken reviews of its undergraduate and postgraduate curricula and one of the key messages underlying university education at the Business School is that it needs to enhance employability. Therefore the consideration of using ‘authentic learning’ methods wherever appropriate would appear to fit in well with this strategy.
The findings suggest that the introduction of authentic learning techniques make student learning from this sample more effective in terms of better pass rates and also that the students enjoy the learning experience more.
The findings therefore bode well for the further use of authentic learning techniques in future teaching and learning activities and also support current literature in this area. The module continues to use the changes introduced and has experienced much higher pass rates and student satisfaction as a result.
Aristotle, Thomson, J.A.K., Barnes, J. (2004), The Nicomachean Ethics, Penguin Classics, ISBN 0140449493
Barab, S.A., Squire, K.D., & Dueber, W. (2000). A co-evolutionary model for supporting the emergence of authenticity. Educational Technology Research and Development, 48(2), 37-62.
Bottge, B.A., & Hasselbring, T.S. (1993). Taking word problems off the page. Educational Leadership, 50(7), 36-38.
Bransford, J.D., Sherwood, R.D., Hasselbring, T.S., Kinzer, C.K., & Williams, S.M. (1990). Anchored instruction: Why we need it and how technology can help. In D. Nix & R. Spiro (Eds.), Cognition, education and multimedia: Exploring ideas in high technology (pp. 115-141). Hillsdale, NJ: Lawrence Erlbaum.
Bransford, J.D., Vye, N., Kinzer, C., & Risko, V. (1990). Teaching thinking and content knowledge: Toward an integrated approach. In B.F. Jones & L. Idol (Eds.), Dimensions of thinking and cognitive instruction (pp. 381-413). Hillsdale, NJ: Lawrence Erlbaum Associates.
Brown, J. S., Collins, A., & Duguid, P. (1989). Situated cognition and the culture of learning, Educational Researcher, 18(1), 32-42.
Chambers, D. P., & Stacey, K. (1999). Authentic tasks for authentic learning: Modes of interactivity in multimedia for undergraduate teacher education.In J. D. Price, J. Willis, D. A. Willis, M. Jost & S. Boger-Mehall (Eds.), Society for Information Technology and Teacher Education International Conference 1999 (pp. 12-17). Chesapeake, VA: AACE.
Cognition and Technology Group at Vanderbilt. (1990a). Anchored instruction and its relationship to situated cognition. Educational Researcher, 19(6), 2-10.
Cognition and Technology Group at Vanderbilt. (1990b). Technology and the design of generative learning environments. Educational Technology, 31(5), 34-40.
Collins, A., Brown, J. S., & Newman, S. E. (1989).Cognitive apprenticeship: Teaching the crafts of reading, writing, and mathematics. In L. B. Resnick (Ed.), Knowing, learning and instruction: Essays in honour of Robert Glaser (pp. 453-494). Hillsdale, N
Cronin, J. C. (1993). Four misconceptions about authentic learning. Educational Leadership, 50(7), 78-80.
Duchastel, P.C. (1997). A Web-based model for for university instruction. Journal of educational technology systems, 25(3), 221-228.
Gordon, R. (1998). Balancing real-world problems with real-world results. Phi Delta Kappan, 79, 390-393.
Fleming, N. D., (2001), Teaching and learning styles: VARK strategies, Christchurch, New Zealand. Retrieved from http://vark-learn.com
Herrington, J., (2006), Authentic e-learning in higher education: Design principles for authentic learning environments and tasks, Faculty of education, University of Wollogong.
Herrington, J., & Herrington, A. (1998). Authentic assessment and multimedia: How university students respond to a model of authentic assessment. Higher Education Research and Development, 17(3), 305-322.
Honebein, P. C., Duffy, T. M., & Fishman, B. J. (1993). Constructivism and the design of learning environments: Context and authentic activities for learning. In T. M. Duffy, J. Lowyck & D. H. Jonassen (Eds.), Designing environments for constructive learning (pp. 87-108). Heidelberg: Springer-Verlag.
Jonassen, D. (1991). Evaluating constructivistic learning. Educational Technology, 31(9), 28-33.
Kantor, R.J., Waddington, T., & Osgood, R.E. (2000). Fostering the suspension of disbelief: The role of authenticity in goal-based scenarios. Interactive Learning Environments, 8(3), 211-227.
Lebow, D. (1993). Constructivist values for instructional systems design: Five principles toward a new mindset. Educational Technology Research and Development, 41(3), 4-16.
Lebow, D., & Wager, W. W. (1994), Authentic activity as a model for appropriate learning activity: Implications for emerging instructional technologies, Canadian Journal of Educational Communication, 23(3), 231-144.
Leite, W., L., Svinicki, M.,, & Shi, Y. (2009). Attempted Validation of the Scores of the VARK: Learning Styles Inventory With Multitrait –Multimethod Confirmatory Factor Analysis Models, SAGE Publications.
Lombardi, M. M., (2007), Authentic Learning for the 21st Century: An Overview, ELI Paper 1 May 2007.
Myers, S. (1993). A trial for Dmitri Karamazov. Educational Leadership, 50(7), 71-72.
Oliver, R., & Omari, A. (1999). Using online technologies to support problem based learning: Learners responses and perceptions. Australian Journal of Educational Technology, 15(158-79).
Reeves, T.C., & Okey, J.R. (1996). Alternative assessment for constructivist learning environments. In B.G. Wilson (Ed.), Constructivist learning environments: Case studies in instructional design (pp. 191- 202). Englewood Cliffs, NJ: Educational Technology Publications.
Reeves, T. C., & Reeves, P. M. (1997),Effective dimensions of interactive learning on the World Wide Web. In B. H. Khan (Ed.), Web-based instruction (pp. 59-66). Englewood Cliffs, New Jersey: Educational Technology Publications.
Resnick, L. (1987). Learning in school and out. Educational Researcher, 16(9), 13-20.
Spiro, R.J., Vispoel, W.P., Schmitz, J.G., Samarapungavan, A., & Boeger, A.E. (1987). Knowledge acquisition for application: Cognitive flexibility and transfer in complex content domains. In B.K. Britton & S.M. Glynn (Eds.), Executive control processes in reading (Vol. 31, pp. 177-199). Hillsdale, NJ: Lawrence Erlbaum Associates.
Winn, W. (1993). Instructional design and situated learning: Paradox or partnership. Educational Technology, 33(3), 16-21.
Young, M.F. (1993). Instructional design for situated learning. Educational Technology Research and Development, 41(1), 43-58.
Young, M.F. (1995). Assessment of situated learning using computer environments. Journal of Science Education and Technology, 4(1), 89-96.
Young, M.F., & McNeese, M. (1993). A situated cognition approach to problem solving with implications for computer-based learning and assessment. In G. Salvendy & M.J. Smith (Eds.), Human-computer interaction: Software and hardware interfaces (pp. 825-830). New York: Elsevier Science Publishers.
Authors who publish with this journal agree to the following terms:
- Authors retain copyright and grant the journal right of first publication with the work simultaneously licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License that allows others to share the work with an acknowledgement of the work's authorship and initial publication in this journal.
- Authors are able to enter into separate, additional contractual arrangements for the non-exclusive distribution of the journal's published version of the work (e.g., post it to an institutional repository or publish it in a book), with an acknowledgement of its initial publication in this journal.
- Authors are permitted and encouraged to post their work online (e.g., in institutional repositories or on their website) prior to and during the submission process, as it can lead to productive exchanges, as well as earlier and greater citation of published work (See The Effect of Open Access).
Journal of Perspectives in Applied Academic Practice has made best effort to ensure accuracy of the contents of this journal, however makes no claims to the authenticity and completeness of the articles published. Authors are responsible for ensuring copyright clearance for any images, tables etc which are supplied from an outside source.
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License.