A design-based study - University of the Western Cape

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Juliana Joan Willemse
Introduction
Mobile learning (M-learning) is fundamentally
defined as “learning with mobile devices” and
has the ability to offer something innovative
and distinctive to extend the philosophies of
learning. Bridging the gap in the continuation
of learning while on-campus (formal learning)
or off-campus or private time (informal
learning) can be made possible with the
application of mobile devices in teaching and
learning.
Importance of the topic
Mobile learning could also be applicable in the examination of the
head and neck within the health assessment module offered in a
nursing programme at a university in the Western Cape Province.
With 5.3 million individuals living with HIV and Aids, South Africa
has the highest incidence of HIV and AIDS infections globally.
The complexity in the prevalence of HIV in South Africa has
influenced the clinical manifestation of conditions of the head and
neck that includes:
(i) oral manifestations; (ii) sinonasal infections; (iii) neuro-otological
presentations; (iv) neck and salivary gland pathology; and (v) HIVassociated neoplasms.
The use of mobile devices may enhance the learning of students by
using a medium that they are able to access and use, that is of
interest to them as individuals or during a collaborative process.
Purpose of the study
The aim of this research project is to describe
and explore the affordances of mobile
learning to integrate theory and practice of the
examination of the head and neck within the
health
assessment
module
in
an
undergraduate nursing program at a higher
education institution in the Western Cape.
Research objectives
– Phase 1
1. What knowledge do students, lecturers and clinical
facilitators have about mobile devices?
2. What are the viewpoints of students, lecturers and
clinical facilitators on the affordances of mobile
learning with the integration of theory and practice of
the examination of the head and neck within the
primary health care module in an undergraduate
nursing program at a higher education institution in
the Western Cape?
3. How can a plan be developed to integrate theory
and practice of the examination of the head and neck
within the primary health care module through mobile
learning in an undergraduate nursing program at a
higher education institution in the Western Cape?
Research objectives
– Phase 2
4. Implement the plan (intervention) to
integrate theory and practice of the
examination of the head and neck within the
primary health care module through mobile
learning in an undergraduate nursing program
at a higher education institution in the Western
Cape.
Research objectives
– Phase 3
5. Reflect on the implementation of the plan
(intervention) of the integration of theory and
practice of the examination of the head and neck
within the primary health care module through
mobile learning in an undergraduate nursing
program at a higher education institution in the
Western Cape.
6. Describe guidelines for lecturers on how to
integrate theory and practice of the examination
of the head and neck within the primary health
care module through mobile learning in an
undergraduate nursing program at a higher
education institution in the Western Cape.
Design
The methodological design for this research project
is design-based research. It integrates the three
phases of the Integrative Learning Design
Framework of Dabbagh and Bannan Ritland (2005)
with the design-based research approach of Reeves
(2006) to systematically develop an online learning
support for students while doing the examination of
the head and neck within the primary health care
module within the third year of an undergraduate
nursing program.
Assumptions of this approach
- The elements of quantitative and qualitative research approaches
will assist the researcher to ascertain the extent and complexity of
the understanding and validation of the integration of mobile
devices in undergraduate nursing to enhance teaching and learning
(Creswell & Plano Clark, 2010:297).
- Students, lecturers and clinical facilitators will participate in or
contribute to the design and development of guidelines on how to
integrate the theory and practice of the health assessment of the
Head and Neck within the Primary Health Care Module through Mlearning in an undergraduate nursing program at a HEI in the
Western Cape, even though they are not specialists in instructional
design (Dabbagh & Bannan-Ritland, 2005:115).
- The knowledge gained by the researcher in the exploration of
perspectives on learning, enacting specific instructional strategies,
and learning from the results, can promote the development of
effective instruction in undergraduate nursing programs (Dabbagh
& Bannan-Ritland, 2005:115).
Phase 1
The exploration phase (Situational
analysis)
The situational analysis is the exploratory phase and
will consist of quantitative and qualitative subphases. A quantitative, exploratory, descriptive
research design method (electronic survey) will be
followed to investigate the knowledge of and use of
mobile devices by participants (Objective 1). An
accessible sample will consist of all third year
undergraduate nursing students (n=100) registered
for “The Health Assessment” semester module. The
survey will take 30 minutes to complete. Descriptive
statistics will be conducted and the results will
inform objective 2.
Phase 1
The exploration phase (Situational
analysis)
The qualitative design will explore and describe the
perceptions of students, lecturers and clinical facilitators
on the integration of theory and practice in teaching and
learning of the examination of the head and neck within
the primary health care module of the third year of an
undergraduate nursing programme (Objective 2). The
non-probability purposive and accessible sample will
consist of all third year undergraduate nursing students
(n=100) registered for “The Health Assessment” semester
module, the lecturer (n=1) and clinical facilitators (n=4)
involved in facilitating this module. Qualitative data will
be collected through focus groups and in-depth
interviews.
Phase 1
The exploration phase (Situational
analysis)
From the results of objective 2 a plan
(intervention) will be developed (Objective 3)
Phase 2
The enactment phase
Phase 2 will explore an intervention solution to
integrate theory with practice from the data collected
in Phase 1. The enactment phase (objective 4) will
guide the researcher in an attempt to generate
strategies that will be congruent with theories of
learning. During the intervention solutions to
integrate theory with practice will be explored. The
activity theory of Engeström will be used to
implement the intervention.
The activity theory of Engeström
Phase 3
Reflection
Participants will be requested to reflect (objective 5)
electronically on their experiences with the
implementation of the plan (intervention) to integrate
the theory and practice of the examination of the head
and neck within the primary health care module
through mobile learning in an undergraduate nursing
program at a higher education institution in the
Western Cape. The following question will be asked to
start the conversation: “How was the intervention for
you?”
Guidelines for lecturers will be described (objective
6) on how to integrate theory and practice of the
examination of the head and neck within the primary
health care module through mobile learning in an
undergraduate nursing program at a higher education
institution in the Western Cape.
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