Learning and Teaching Investment Fund 2009

Summary of Projects

Project Title

Student Engagement Through e-Learning: Using Online Simulation for Small, Medium and Large Classes

Project Leaders

Kathy Douglas

Project Summary

Engaging students through online role-plays has been demonstrated as a beneficial learning process. There are many potential benefits to the use of online role-plays providing the opportunity for students to demonstrate negotiation skills and collaborative problem solving in an asynchronous environment.

This project sought to foster a community of practice in the teaching of negotiation online at RMIT University by trialling the design and use of online role-plays with students. Online role-plays of this kind can contribute to the development of employability skills. The project provided a professional development web page on the RMIT University website that offers guidance in using online role-plays in teaching negotiation and other curriculum areas. The materials online encourage RMIT University teachers to experiment with online role-plays in teaching small, medium and large classes. The community of practice also experimented with and reported upon the use of Web 2.0 tools to debrief online role-plays including e-journals, wikis, blogs and e-portfolios. An experiment was conducted to test the pedagogical benefits of designing role-plays online as opposed to playing out role-plays online.

Outcomes

  • Development of a community of practice of academics in online negotiation learning through the use of online role-play that can be applied to small, medium and large classes.
  • A professional development web page on the RMIT University website that gives guidance in using online role-plays in teaching negotiation and other curriculum areas.
  • A learning and teaching approach and resource that is engaging for students and can contribute directly to their employability skills (communication, teamwork, problem-solving, initiative and enterprise, planning and organisation, self-management, learning and technology).
  • Presentations and refereed publications resulting from the project including two refereed conference papers for the ATN Assessment Conference (2009) held at RMIT University.

Download Full Report [PDF, 80.7KB]