The Use of Course Management Systems in Pre-Service Teacher Education

The Use of Course Management Systems in Pre-Service Teacher Education

Damian Maher (University of Technology Sydney, Australia)
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-5225-5557-5.ch011
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Course management systems (CMSs) have now become firmly embedded into pre-service teacher education courses in many universities around the world to support teaching and learning. This chapter investigates some of the features of CMSs and how they are being used. In investigating the use of CMSs, some of the theories/models that underpin online and blended learning including social presence, community of practice (CoP), and constructivism are investigated. Some of the key themes that are discussed in this chapter include blended and flipped learning and the use of analytics. Contemporary spaces such as Facebook and Google Classroom are also investigated.
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Course Management Systems

A course management system is defined as: a software system that is specifically designed and marketed for faculty and students to use in teaching and learning (Morgan, 2003). These systems have become a critical component of education at all levels, including primary and secondary education, higher education, continuing education, and professional industry training (Wang, 2014). Management Systems have evolved to deliver, manage, track and assess learning activities in a structured environment. Additionally, the development of the online learning landscape has seen the introduction of new forms of communication, including social networking and content sharing (Rekhari, 2015) as components of contemporary management systems.

Management systems have been designed to support teachers and learners with varying learning philosophies, communication modes (which are supported in part by audio, video, photos, text and interactive simulations), and to facilitate access to content (Black, Beck, Dawson, Jinks & DiPietro, 2007). Some of these learning philosophies are examined in this chapter in relation to the different uses of management systems.

Examples of management systems include WebCT, Blackboard, Learning Space, Moodle and eCollege. Such integrated systems provide a shared space to students and lecturers with tools such as file sharing, social media, discussion forums, wikis as well as group and individual blogs (Howell & O’Donnell, 2017).

While these systems are designed to include the resources needed to support student learning, other systems including Facebook, Google Classroom, Twitter etc. are also widely used to support learning. This chapter uses the term course management system (CMS) as an umbrella term to refer to both CMSs and LMSs and to shared learning spaces which can be linked to form a hybrid CMS.

Key Terms in this Chapter

Asynchronous Learning: Are forms of learning that do not occur in the same place or at the same time (e.g., email, posting a comment on a blog, watching a recording of a video, etc.).

Synchronous Learning: Forms of learning that occur at the same time, but not in the same place (e.g., a video conference, Adobe connect session, or a live tweet up via Twitter).

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