Web-Based Collateral Support for Traditional Learning: A Field Experiment

Web-Based Collateral Support for Traditional Learning: A Field Experiment

Tim Hill, Laku Chidambaram
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-878289-60-5.ch018
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The emergence of the Web and the growth of multimedia technologies offer new mechanisms to support and enhance traditional classroom instruction. This chapter reports on a field study in the use of a Web-based distance learning tool. Students enrolled in traditional classroom courses were provided with asynchronous distance learning support consisting of anytime/anyplace access to classroom lectures via the World Wide Web. The traditional classroom lectures were audio-recorded and the audio transcripts digitized, compressed and stored, along with the synchronized lecture slides, for accessing and viewing via the Web. Usage patterns were unobtrusively monitored and correlated with performance. Additionally, participants’ perceptions were collected, compiled and analyzed. The results showed that repeated use of the Web-based supplement was correlated with better overall performance in the class. They also provided some clues to the motivations of users who seek out and explore collateral Web-based support for their own individual learning. This study provides a foundation for further research and application by: 1) helping to assess the utility of collateral support for traditional instruction using Web-based media, 2) shedding light on user adoption behaviors and attitudes, and 3) identifying practical considerations in the implementation of Web-based support for distance learning.

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