International Science Index

281
10008803
Discrepant Views of Social Competence and Links with Social Phobia
Abstract:

Adolescents’ biased perceptions about their social competence (SC), whether negatively or positively, serve to influence their socioemotional adjustment such as early feelings of social phobia (nowadays referred to as Social Anxiety Disorder-SAD). Despite the importance of biased self-perceptions in adolescents’ psychosocial adjustment, the extent to which discrepancies between self- and others’ evaluations of one’s SC are linked to social phobic symptoms remains unclear in the literature. This study examined the perceptual discrepancy profiles between self- and peers’ as well as between self- and teachers’ evaluations of adolescents’ SC and the interrelations of these profiles with self-reported social phobic symptoms. The participants were 390 3rd graders (15 years old) of Finnish lower secondary school (50.8% boys, 49.2% girls). In contrast with variable-centered approaches that have mainly been used by previous studies when focusing on this subject, this study used latent profile analysis (LPA), a person-centered approach which can provide information regarding risk profiles by capturing the heterogeneity within a population and classifying individuals into groups. LPA revealed the following five classes of discrepancy profiles: i) extremely negatively biased perceptions of SC, ii) negatively biased perceptions of SC, iii) quite realistic perceptions of SC, iv) positively biased perceptions of SC, and v) extremely positively biased perceptions of SC. Adolescents with extremely negatively biased perceptions and negatively biased perceptions of their own SC reported the highest number of social phobic symptoms. Adolescents with quite realistic, positively biased and extremely positively biased perceptions reported the lowest number of socio-phobic symptoms. The results point out the negatively and the extremely negatively biased perceptions as possible contributors to social phobic symptoms. Moreover, the association of quite realistic perceptions with low number of social phobic symptoms indicates its potential protective power against social phobia. Finally, positively and extremely positively biased perceptions of SC are negatively associated with social phobic symptoms in this study. However, the profile of extremely positively biased perceptions might be linked as well with the existence of externalizing problems such as antisocial behavior (e.g. disruptive impulsivity). The current findings highlight the importance of considering discrepancies between self- and others’ perceptions of one’s SC in clinical and research efforts. Interventions designed to prevent or moderate social phobic symptoms need to take into account individual needs rather than aiming for uniform treatment. Implications and future directions are discussed.

Paper Detail
96
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280
10008691
Using Music in the Classroom to Help Syrian Refugees Deal with Post-War Trauma
Abstract:

Millions of Syrian families have been displaced since the beginning of the Syrian war, and the negative effects of post-war trauma have shown detrimental effects on the mental health of refugee children. While educational strategies have focused on vocational training and academic achievement, little has been done to include music in the school curriculum to help these children improve their mental health. The literature of music education and psychology, on the other hand, shows the positive effects of music on traumatized children, especially when it comes to dealing with stress. This paper presents a brief literature review of trauma, music therapy, and music in the classroom, after having introduced the Syrian war and refugee situation. Furthermore, the paper highlights the benefits of using music with traumatized children from the literature and offers strategies for teachers (such as singing, playing an instrument, songwriting, and others) to include music in their classrooms to help Syrian refugee children deal with post-war trauma.

Paper Detail
168
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279
10008756
Urban and Rural Children’s Knowledge on Biodiversity in Bizkaia: Tree Identification Skills and Animal and Plant Listing
Abstract:
Biodiversity provides humans with a great range of ecosystemic services; it is therefore an indispensable resource and a legacy to coming generations. However, in the last decades, the increasing exploitation of the Planet has caused a great loss of biodiversity and its acquaintance has decreased remarkably; especially in urbanized areas, due to the decreasing attachment of humans to nature. Yet, the Primary Education curriculum primes the identification of flora and fauna to guarantee the knowledge of children on their surroundings, so that they care for the environment as well as for themselves. In order to produce effective didactic material that meets the needs of both teachers and pupils, it is fundamental to diagnose the current situation. In the present work, the knowledge on biodiversity of 3rd cycle Primary Education students in Biscay (n=98) and its relation to the size of the town/city of their school is discussed. Two tests have been used with such aim: one for tree identification and the other one so that the students enumerated the species of trees and animals they knew. Results reveal that knowledge of students on tree identification is scarce regardless the size of the city/town and of their school. On the other hand, animal species are better known than tree species.
Paper Detail
139
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278
10008589
Determination of the Content of Teachers’ Presentism through a Web-Based Delphi Method
Authors:
Abstract:

Presentism is one of the orientations of teachers’ teaching culture. However, there are few researchers to explore it in Taiwan. The objective of this study is to establish an expert-based determination of the content of teachers’ presentism in Taiwan. The author reviewed the works of Jackson, Lortie, and Hargreaves and employed Hargreaves’ three forms of teachers’ presentism as a framework to design the questionnaire of this study. The questionnaire of teachers’ presentism comprised of 42 statements. A three-round web-based Delphi survey was proposed to 14 participants (two teacher educators, two educational administrators, three school principals, and seven schoolteachers), 13 participants (92.86%) completed the three-rounds of the study. The participants were invited to indicate the importance of each statement. The Delphi study used means and standard deviation to present information concerning the collective judgments of respondents. Finally, the author obtained consensual results for 67% (28/42). However, the outcome of this study could be the result of identifying a series of general statements rather than an in-depth exposition of the topic.

Paper Detail
120
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277
10008597
Investigating Medical Students’ Perspectives toward University Teachers’ Talking Features in an English as a Foreign Language Context in Urmia, Iran
Abstract:

This study aimed to investigate medical students’ attitudes toward some teachers’ talking features regarding their gender in the Iranian context. To do so, 60 male and 60 female medical students of Urmia University of Medical Sciences (UMSU) participated in the research. A researcher made Likert-type questionnaire which was initially piloted and was used to gather the data. Comparing the four different factors regarding the features of teacher talk, it was revealed that visual and extra-linguistic information factor, Lexical and syntactic familiarity, Speed of speech, and the use of Persian language had the highest to the lowest mean score, respectively. It was also indicated that female students rather than male students were significantly more in favor of speed of speech and lexical and syntactic familiarity.

Paper Detail
94
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276
10008328
Teachers Leadership Dimension in History Learning
Abstract:
The Ministry of Education Malaysia dynamically and drastically made the subject of History mandatory to be in force in 2013. This is in recognition of the nation's heritage and treasures in maintaining true facts and information for future generations of the State. History reveals the civilization of a nation and the fact of national cultural heritage. Civilization needs to be preserved as a legacy of sovereign heritage. Today's generation is the catalyst for future heirs who will support the principle and direction of the country. In line with the National Education Philosophy that aims to shape the potential development of individuals holistically and uniquely in order to produce a balanced and harmonious student in terms of intellectual, spiritual, emotional and physical. Hence, understanding the importance of studying the history subject as a pillar of identity and the history of nationhood is to be a priority in the pursuit of knowledge and empowering the spirit of statehood that is nurtured through continuous learning at school. Judging from the aspect of teacher leadership role in integrating history in a combined way based on Teacher Education Philosophy. It empowers the teaching profession towards the teacher to support noble character. It also supports progressive and scientific views. Teachers are willing to uphold the State's aspirations and celebrate the country's cultural heritage. They guarantee individual development and maintain a united, democratic, progressive and disciplined society. Teacher's role as a change and leadership agent in education begins in the classroom through formal or informal educational processes. This situation is expanded in schools, communities and countries. The focus of this paper is on the role of teacher leadership influencing the effectiveness of teaching and learning history in the classroom environment. Leadership guides to teachers' perceptions on the role of teacher leadership, teaching leadership, and the teacher leadership role and effective teacher leadership role. Discussions give emphasis on aspects of factors affecting the classroom environment, forming the classroom agenda, effective classroom implementation methods, suitable climate for historical learning and teacher challenges in implicating the effectiveness of teaching and learning processes.
Paper Detail
230
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275
10008349
The Effect of Cross-Curriculum of L1 and L2 on Elementary School Students’ Linguistic Proficiency: To Sympathize with Others
Abstract:
This paper reports on a project to integrate Japanese (as a first language) and English (as a second language) education. This study focuses on the mutual effects of the two languages on the linguistic proficiency of elementary school students. The research team consisted of elementary school teachers and researchers at a university. The participants of the experiment were students between 3rd and 6th grades at an elementary school. The research process consisted of seven steps: 1) specifying linguistic proficiency; 2) developing the cross-curriculum of L1 and L2; 3) forming can-do statements; 4) creating a self-evaluation questionnaire; 5) executing the self-evaluation questionnaire at the beginning of the school year; 6) instructing L1 and L2 based on the curriculum; and 7) executing the self-evaluation questionnaire at the beginning of the next school year. In Step 1, the members of the research team brainstormed ways to specify elementary school students’ linguistic proficiency that can be observed in various scenes. It was revealed that the teachers evaluate their students’ linguistic proficiency on the basis of the students’ utterances, but also informed by their non-verbal communication abilities. This led to the idea that competency for understanding others’ minds through the use of physical movement or bodily senses in communication in L1 – to sympathize with others – can be transferred to that same competency in communication in L2. Based on the specification of linguistic proficiency that L1 and L2 have in common, a cross-curriculum of L1 and L2 was developed in Step 2. In Step 3, can-do statements based on the curriculum were also formed, building off of the action-oriented approach from the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages (CEFR) used in Europe. A self-evaluation questionnaire consisting of the main can-do statements was given to the students between 3rd grade and 6th grade at the beginning of the school year (Step 4 and Step 5), and all teachers gave L1 and L2 instruction based on the curriculum to the students for one year (Step 6). The same questionnaire was given to the students at the beginning of the next school year (Step 7). The results of statistical analysis proved the enhancement of the students’ linguistic proficiency. This verified the validity of developing the cross-curriculum of L1 and L2 and adapting it in elementary school. It was concluded that elementary school students do not distinguish between L1 and L2, and that they just try to understand others’ minds through physical movement or senses in any language.
Paper Detail
293
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274
10008751
The Effect of Information vs. Reasoning Gap Tasks on the Frequency of Conversational Strategies and Accuracy in Speaking among Iranian Intermediate EFL Learners
Abstract:

Speaking skills merit meticulous attention both on the side of the learners and the teachers. In particular, accuracy is a critical component to guarantee the messages to be conveyed through conversation because a wrongful change may adversely alter the content and purpose of the talk. Different types of tasks have served teachers to meet numerous educational objectives. Besides, negotiation of meaning and the use of different strategies have been areas of concern in socio-cultural theories of SLA. Negotiation of meaning is among the conversational processes which have a crucial role in facilitating the understanding and expression of meaning in a given second language. Conversational strategies are used during interaction when there is a breakdown in communication that leads to the interlocutor attempting to remedy the gap through talk. Therefore, this study was an attempt to investigate if there was any significant difference between the effect of reasoning gap tasks and information gap tasks on the frequency of conversational strategies used in negotiation of meaning in classrooms on one hand, and on the accuracy in speaking of Iranian intermediate EFL learners on the other. After a pilot study to check the practicality of the treatments, at the outset of the main study, the Preliminary English Test was administered to ensure the homogeneity of 87 out of 107 participants who attended the intact classes of a 15 session term in one control and two experimental groups. Also, speaking sections of PET were used as pretest and posttest to examine their speaking accuracy. The tests were recorded and transcribed to estimate the percentage of the number of the clauses with no grammatical errors in the total produced clauses to measure the speaking accuracy. In all groups, the grammatical points of accuracy were instructed and the use of conversational strategies was practiced. Then, different kinds of reasoning gap tasks (matchmaking, deciding on the course of action, and working out a time table) and information gap tasks (restoring an incomplete chart, spot the differences, arranging sentences into stories, and guessing game) were manipulated in experimental groups during treatment sessions, and the students were required to practice conversational strategies when doing speaking tasks. The conversations throughout the terms were recorded and transcribed to count the frequency of the conversational strategies used in all groups. The results of statistical analysis demonstrated that applying both the reasoning gap tasks and information gap tasks significantly affected the frequency of conversational strategies through negotiation. In the face of the improvements, the reasoning gap tasks had a more significant impact on encouraging the negotiation of meaning and increasing the number of conversational frequencies every session. The findings also indicated both task types could help learners significantly improve their speaking accuracy. Here, applying the reasoning gap tasks was more effective than the information gap tasks in improving the level of learners’ speaking accuracy.

Paper Detail
77
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273
10008344
The Impact of Leadership Style and Sense of Competence on the Performance of Post-Primary School Teachers in Oyo State, Nigeria
Abstract:

The not so pleasing state of the nation's quality of education has been a major area of research. Many researchers have looked into various aspects of the educational system and organizational structure in relation to the quality of service delivery of the staff members. However, there is paucity of research in areas relating to the sense of competence and commitment in relation to leadership styles. Against this backdrop, this study investigated the impact of leadership style and sense of competence on the performance of post-primary school teachers in Oyo state Nigeria. Data were generated across public secondary schools in the city using survey design method. Ibadan as a metropolis has eleven local government areas contained in it. A systematic random sampling technique of the eleven local government areas in Ibadan was done and five local government areas were selected. The selected local government areas are Akinyele, Ibadan North, Ibadan North-East, Ibadan South and Ibadan South-West. Data were obtained from a range of two – three public secondary schools selected in each of the local government areas mentioned above. Also, these secondary schools are a representation of the variations in the constructs under consideration across the Ibadan metropolis. Categorically, all secondary school teachers in Ibadan were clustered into selected schools in those found across the five local government areas. In all, a total of 272 questionnaires were administered to public secondary school teachers, while 241 were returned. Findings revealed that transformational leadership style makes room for job commitment when compared with transactional and laissez-faire leadership styles. Teachers with a high sense of competence are more likely to demonstrate more commitment to their job than others with low sense of competence. We recommend that, it is important an assessment is made of the leadership styles employed by principals and school administrators. This guides administrators and principals in to having a clear, comprehensive knowledge of the style they currently adopt in the management of the staff and the school as a whole; and know where to begin the adjustment process from. Also to make an impact on student achievement, being attentive to teachers’ levels of commitment may be an important aspect of leadership for school principals.

Paper Detail
167
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272
10008242
Enhancing Children’s English Vocabulary Acquisition through Digital Storytelling at Happy Kids Kindergarten, Palembang, Indonesia
Abstract:
Enhanching English vocabulary in early childhood is the main problem often faced by teachers. Thus, the purpose of this study was to determine the enhancement of children’s English vocabulary acquisition by using digital storytelling. This type of research was an action research. It consisted of a series of four activities done in repeated cycles: planning, implementation, observation, and reflection. The subject of the study consisted of 30 students of B group (5-6 years old) attending Happy Kids Kindergarten Palembang, Indonesia. This research was conducted in three cycles. The methods used for data collection were observation and documentation. Descriptive qualitative and quantitative methods were also used to analyse the data. The research showed that the digital storytelling learning activities could enhance the children’s English vocabulary acquisition. It is based on the data in which the enhancement in pre-cycle was 37% and 51% in Cycle I. In Cycle II it was 71% and in Cycle III it was 89.3%. The results showed an enhancement of about 14% from the pre-cycle to Cycle I, 20% from Cycle I to Cycle II, and enhancement of about 18.3% from Cycle II to Cycle III. The conclusion of this study suggests that digital storytelling learning method could enhance the English vocabulary acquisition of B group children at the Happy Kids Kindergarten Palembang. Therefore, digital storytelling can be considered as an alternative to improve English language learning in the classroom.
Paper Detail
221
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271
10008027
Student and Group Activity Level Assessment in the ELARS Recommender System
Abstract:

This paper presents an original approach to student and group activity level assessment that relies on certainty factors theory. Activity level is used to represent quantity and continuity of student’s contributions in individual and collaborative e‑learning activities (e‑tivities) and is calculated to assist teachers in assessing quantitative aspects of student's achievements. Calculated activity levels are also used to raise awareness and provide recommendations during the learning process. The proposed approach was implemented within the educational recommender system ELARS and validated using data obtained from e‑tivity realized during a blended learning course. The results showed that the proposed approach can be used to estimate activity level in the context of e-tivities realized using Web 2.0 tools as well as to facilitate the assessment of quantitative aspect of students’ participation in e‑tivities.

Paper Detail
229
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270
10007772
Massive Open Online Course about Content Language Integrated Learning: A Methodological Approach for Content Language Integrated Learning Teachers
Authors:
Abstract:

This paper focuses on the design of a Massive Open Online Course (MOOC) about Content Language Integrated Learning (CLIL) and more specifically about how teachers can use CLIL as an educational approach incorporating technology in their teaching as well. All the four weeks of the MOOC will be presented and a step-by-step analysis of each lesson will be offered. Additionally, the paper includes detailed lesson plans about CLIL lessons with proposed CLIL activities and games in which technology plays a central part. The MOOC is structured based on certain criteria, in order to ensure success, as well as a positive experience that the learners need to have after completing this MOOC. It addresses to all language teachers who would like to implement CLIL into their teaching. In other words, it presents the methodology that needs to be followed so as to successfully carry out a CLIL lesson and achieve the learning objectives set at the beginning of the course. Firstly, in this paper, it is very important to give the definitions of MOOCs and LMOOCs, as well as to explore the difference between a structure-based MOOC (xMOOC) and a connectivist MOOC (cMOOC) and present the criteria of a successful MOOC. Moreover, the notion of CLIL will be explored, as it is necessary to fully understand this concept before moving on to the design of the MOOC. Onwards, the four weeks of the MOOC will be introduced as well as lesson plans will be presented: The type of the activities, the aims of each activity and the methodology that teachers have to follow. Emphasis will be placed on the role of technology in foreign language learning and on the ways in which we can involve technology in teaching a foreign language. Final remarks will be made and a summary of the main points will be offered at the end.

Paper Detail
240
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269
10007592
An Electronic and Performance Test for the Applicants to Faculty of Education for Early Childhood in Egypt for Measuring the Skills of Teacher Students
Abstract:
The current study presents an electronic test to measure teaching skills. This test is a part of the admission system of the Faculty of Education for Early Childhood, Cairo University. The test has been prepared to evaluate university students who apply for admission the Faculty. It measures some social and physiological skills which are important for successful teachers, such as emotional adjustment and problem solving; moreover, the extent of their love for children and their capability to interact with them. The test has been approved by 13 experts. Finally, it has been introduced to 1,100 students during the admission system of the academic year 2016/2017. The results showed that most of the applicants have an auditory learning style. In addition, 97% of them have the minimum requirement skills for teaching children.
Paper Detail
179
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268
10007937
Robot Technology Impact on Dyslexic Students’ English Learning
Abstract:

Involving students in English language learning process and achieving an adequate English language proficiency in the target language can be a great challenge for both teachers and students. This can prove even a far greater challenge to engage students with special needs (Dyslexia) if they have physical impairment and inadequate mastery of basic communicative language competence/proficiency in the target language. From this perspective, technology like robots can probably be used to enhance learning process for the special needs students who have extensive communication needs, who face continuous struggle to interact with their peers and teachers and meet academic requirements. Robots, precisely NAO, can probably provide them with the perfect opportunity to practice social and communication skills, and meet their English academic requirements. This research paper aims to identify to what extent robots can be used to improve students’ social interaction and communication skills and to understand the potential for robotics-based education in motivating and engaging UAEU dyslexic students to meet university requirements. To reach this end, the paper will explore several factors that come into play – Motion Level-involving cognitive activities, Interaction Level-involving language processing, Behavior Level -establishing a close relationship with the robot and Appraisal Level- focusing on dyslexia students’ achievement in the target language.

Paper Detail
186
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267
10007197
Investigating Transformative Practices in the Bangladeshi Classroom
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This paper examines the theoretical construct of transformative practices, and reports some evidence of transformative practices from a couple of Bangladeshi English teachers. The idea of transformative practices calls for teachers’ capabilities to invest their intellectual labor in teaching with an assumption that along with the academic advancement of the learners, it aims for the personal transformation for both the learners as well for themselves. Following an ethnographic research approach, data for this study were collected through in-depth interviews, informal talks and classroom observations for a period of one year. In relevance to the English classroom of the Bangladeshi context, from this study, references of transformative practices have been underlined from the participant teachers’ views on English language teaching as well as from their actual practices. According to data of this research, some evidence of transformative practices in the form of critical language awareness and personal theories of practices emerge from the participants’ articulation of the beliefs on teaching; and from the participant teachers’ classroom practices evidence of self-directed acts of teaching, self-directed acts of professional development, and liberatory autonomy have been highlighted as the reflections of transformative practices. The implication of this paper refers to the significance of practicing teachers’ articulation of beliefs and views on teaching along with their orientation to critical pedagogical relations.

Paper Detail
217
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266
10007286
Unpacking Chilean Preservice Teachers’ Beliefs on Practicum Experiences through Digital Stories
Abstract:
An EFL teacher education programme in Chile takes five years to train a future teacher of English. Preservice teachers are prepared to learn an advanced level of English and teach the language from 5th to 12th grade in the Chilean educational system. In the context of their first EFL Methodology course in year four, preservice teachers have to create a five-minute digital story that starts from a critical incident they have experienced as teachers-to-be during their observations or interventions in the schools. A critical incident can be defined as a happening, a specific incident or event either observed by them or involving them. The happening sparks their thinking and may make them subsequently think differently about the particular event. When they create their digital stories, preservice teachers put technology, teaching practice and theory together to narrate a story that is complemented by still images, moving images, text, sound effects and music. The story should be told as a personal narrative, which explains the critical incident. This presentation will focus on the creation process of 50 Chilean preservice teachers’ digital stories highlighting the critical incidents they started their stories. It will also unpack preservice teachers’ beliefs and reflections when approaching their teaching practices in schools. These beliefs will be coded and categorized through content analysis to evidence preservice teachers’ most rooted conceptions about English teaching and learning in Chilean schools. The findings seem to indicate that preservice teachers’ beliefs are strongly mediated by contextual and affective factors.
Paper Detail
227
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265
10007364
Teaching Linguistic Humour Research Theories: Egyptian Higher Education EFL Literature Classes
Abstract:

“Humour studies” is an interdisciplinary research area that is relatively recent. It interests researchers from the disciplines of psychology, sociology, medicine, nursing, in the work place, gender studies, among others, and certainly teaching, language learning, linguistics, and literature. Linguistic theories of humour research are numerous; some of which are of interest to the present study. In spite of the fact that humour courses are now taught in universities around the world in the Egyptian context it is not included. The purpose of the present study is two-fold: to review the state of arts and to show how linguistic theories of humour can be possibly used as an art and craft of teaching and of learning in EFL literature classes. In the present study linguistic theories of humour were applied to selected literary texts to interpret humour as an intrinsic artistic communicative competence challenge. Humour in the area of linguistics was seen as a fifth component of communicative competence of the second language leaner. In literature it was studied as satire, irony, wit, or comedy. Linguistic theories of humour now describe its linguistic structure, mechanism, function, and linguistic deviance. Semantic Script Theory of Verbal Humor (SSTH), General Theory of Verbal Humor (GTVH), Audience Based Theory of Humor (ABTH), and their extensions and subcategories as well as the pragmatic perspective were employed in the analyses. This research analysed the linguistic semantic structure of humour, its mechanism, and how the audience reader (teacher or learner) becomes an interactive interpreter of the humour. This promotes humour competence together with the linguistic, social, cultural, and discourse communicative competence. Studying humour as part of the literary texts and the perception of its function in the work also brings its positive association in class for educational purposes. Humour is by default a provoking/laughter-generated device. Incongruity recognition, perception and resolving it, is a cognitive mastery. This cognitive process involves a humour experience that lightens up the classroom and the mind. It establishes connections necessary for the learning process. In this context the study examined selected narratives to exemplify the application of the theories. It is, therefore, recommended that the theories would be taught and applied to literary texts for a better understanding of the language. Students will then develop their language competence. Teachers in EFL/ESL classes will teach the theories, assist students apply them and interpret text and in the process will also use humour. This is thus easing students' acquisition of the second language, making the classroom an enjoyable, cheerful, self-assuring, and self-illuminating experience for both themselves and their students. It is further recommended that courses of humour research studies should become an integral part of higher education curricula in Egypt.

Paper Detail
360
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264
10007471
Towards Bridging the Gap between the ESP Classroom and the Workplace: Content and Language Needs Analysis in English for an Administrative Studies Course
Authors:
Abstract:
Croatia has made large steps forward in the development of higher education over the past 10 years. Purposes and objectives of the tertiary education system are focused on the personal development of young people so that they obtain competences for employment on a flexible labour market. The most frequent tensions between the tertiary institutions and employers are complaints that the current tertiary education system still supplies students with an abundance of theoretical knowledge and not enough practical skills. Polytechnics and schools of professional higher education should deliver professional education and training that will satisfy the needs of their local communities. The 21st century sets demand on undergraduates as well as their lecturers to strive for the highest standards. The skills students acquire during their studies should serve the needs of their future professional careers. In this context, teaching English for Specific Purposes (ESP) presents an enormous challenge for teachers. They have to cope with teaching the language in classes with a large number of students, limitations of time, inadequate equipment and teaching material; most frequently, this leads to focusing on specialist vocabulary neglecting the development of skills and competences required for future employment. Globalization has transformed the labour market and set new standards a perspective employee should meet. When knowledge of languages is considered, new generic skills and competences are required. Not only skillful written and oral communication is needed, but also information, media, and technology literacy, learning skills which include critical and creative thinking, collaborating and communicating, as well as social skills. The aim of this paper is to evaluate the needs of two groups of ESP first year Undergraduate Professional Administrative Study students taking ESP as a mandatory course: 47 first-year Undergraduate Professional Administrative Study students, 21 first-year employed part-time Undergraduate Professional Administrative Study students and 30 graduates with a degree in Undergraduate Professional Administrative Study with various amounts of work experience. The survey adopted a quantitative approach with the aim to determine the differences between the groups in their perception of the four language skills and different areas of law, as well as getting the insight into students' satisfaction with the current course and their motivation for studying ESP. Their perceptions will be compared to the results of the questionnaire conducted among sector professionals in order to examine how they perceive the same elements of the ESP course content and to what extent it fits into their working environment. The results of the survey indicated that there is a strong correlation between acquiring work experience and the level of importance given to particular areas of law studied in an ESP course which is in line with our initial hypothesis. In conclusion, the results of the survey should help lecturers in re-evaluating and updating their ESP course syllabi.
Paper Detail
198
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263
10007472
Pre-Service EFL Teachers' Perceptions of Written Corrective Feedback in a Wiki-Based Environment
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This paper explores Chilean pre-service teachers' perceptions about the provision of corrective feedback in a wiki environment during the collaborative writing of an argumentative essay. After conducting a semi-structured interview on 22 participants, the data were processed through the content analysis technique. The results show that students have positive perceptions about corrective feedback, provided through a wiki virtual environment, which in turn facilitates feedback provision and impacts language learning effectively. Some of the positive perceptions about virtual feedback refer to permanent access, efficiency, simultaneous revision and immediacy. It would then be advisable to integrate wiki-based feedback as a methodology for the language classroom and collaborative writing tasks.

Paper Detail
198
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262
10007631
Inner and Outer School Contextual Factors Associated with Poor Performance of Grade 12 Students: A Case Study of an Underperforming High School in Mpumalanga, South Africa
Abstract:

Often a Grade 12 certificate is perceived as a passport to tertiary education and the minimum requirement to enter the world of work. In spite of its importance, many students do not make this milestone in South Africa. It is important to find out why so many students still fail in spite of transformation in the education system in the post-apartheid era. Given the complexity of education and its context, this study adopted a case study design to examine one historically underperforming high school in Bushbuckridge, Mpumalanga Province, South Africa in 2013. The aim was to gain a understanding of the inner and outer school contextual factors associated with the high failure rate among Grade 12 students.  Government documents and reports were consulted to identify factors in the district and the village surrounding the school and a student survey was conducted to identify school, home and student factors. The randomly-sampled half of the population of Grade 12 students (53) participated in the survey and quantitative data are analyzed using descriptive statistical methods. The findings showed that a host of factors is at play. The school is located in a village within a municipality which has been one of the poorest three municipalities in South Africa and the lowest Grade 12 pass rate in the Mpumalanga province.   Moreover, over half of the families of the students are single parents, 43% are unemployed and the majority has a low level of education. In addition, most families (83%) do not have basic study materials such as a dictionary, books, tables, and chairs. A significant number of students (70%) are over-aged (+19 years old); close to half of them (49%) are grade repeaters. The school itself lacks essential resources, namely computers, science laboratories, library, and enough furniture and textbooks. Moreover, teaching and learning are negatively affected by the teachers’ occasional absenteeism, inadequate lesson preparation, and poor communication skills. Overall, the continuous low performance of students in this school mirrors the vicious circle of multiple negative conditions present within and outside of the school. The complexity of factors associated with the underperformance of Grade 12 students in this school calls for a multi-dimensional intervention from government and stakeholders. One important intervention should be the placement of over-aged students and grade-repeaters in suitable educational institutions for the benefit of other students.

Paper Detail
198
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261
10007378
Implementation of Student-Centered Learning Approach in Building Surveying Course
Abstract:

The curriculum of architecture department in Prince Sultan University includes ‘Building Surveying’ course which is usually a part of civil engineering courses. As a fundamental requirement of the course, it requires a strong background in mathematics and physics, which are not usually preferred subjects to the architecture students and many of them are not giving the required and necessary attention to these courses during their preparation year before commencing their architectural study. This paper introduces the concept and the methodology of the student-centered learning approach in the course of building surveying for architects. One of the major outcomes is the improvement in the students’ involvement in the course and how this will cover and strength their analytical weak points and improve their mathematical skills. The study is conducted through three semesters with a total number of 99 students. The effectiveness of the student-centered learning approach is studied using the student survey at the end of each semester and teacher observations. This survey showed great acceptance of the students for these methods. Also, the teachers observed a great improvement in the students’ mathematical abilities and how keener they became in attending the classes which were clearly reflected on the low absence record.

Paper Detail
222
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260
10006961
Conceptual Model for Massive Open Online Blended Courses Based on Disciplines’ Concepts Capitalization and Obstacles’ Detection
Abstract:

Since its appearance, the MOOC (massive open online course) is gaining more and more intention of the educational communities over the world. Apart from the current MOOCs design and purposes, the creators of MOOC focused on the importance of the connection and knowledge exchange between individuals in learning. In this paper, we present a conceptual model for massive open online blended courses where teachers over the world can collaborate and exchange their experience to get a common efficient content designed as a MOOC opened to their students to live a better learning experience. This model is based on disciplines’ concepts capitalization and the detection of the obstacles met by their students when faced with problem situations (exercises, projects, case studies, etc.). This detection is possible by analyzing the frequently of semantic errors committed by the students. The participation of teachers in the design of the course and the attendance by their students can guarantee an efficient and extensive participation (an important number of participants) in the course, the learners’ motivation and the evaluation issues, in the way that the teachers designing the course assess their students. Thus, the teachers review, together with their knowledge, offer a better assessment and efficient connections to their students.

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10006990
Lab Activities for Introducing Nanoscience to Teachers and Students
Abstract:

Nanoscience has become one of the main science fields in the world; its importance is reflected in both society and industry; therefore, it is very important to intensify educational programs among teachers and students that aim to introduce "Nano Concepts" to them. Two different lab activities were developed for demonstrating the importance of nanoscale materials using unique points of view. In the first, electrical conductive films made of silver nanoparticles were fabricated. The silver nanoparticles were protected against aggregation using electrical conductive polypyrrole, which acts also as conductive bridge between them. The experiments show a simpler way for fabricating conductive thin film than the much more complicated and costly conventional method. In the second part, the participants could produce emulsions of liposome structures using Phosphatidylcholine as a surfactant, and following by minimizing the size of it from micro-scale to nanometer scale (400 nm), using simple apparatus called Mini-Extruder, in that way the participants could realize the change in solution transparency, and the effect of Tyndall when the size of the liposomes is reduced. Freshmen students from the Academic Arab College for Education in Haifa, Israel, who are studying to become science teachers, participated in this lab activity as part of the course "Chemistry in the Lab". These experiments are appropriate for teachers, high school and college students.

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184
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10007043
Open Innovation Laboratory for Rapid Realization of Sensing, Smart and Sustainable Products (S3 Products) for Higher Education
Abstract:
Higher education methods need to evolve because the new generations of students are learning in different ways. One way is by adopting emergent technologies, new learning methods and promoting the maker movement. As a result, Tecnologico de Monterrey is developing Open Innovation Laboratories as an immediate response to educational challenges of the world. This paper presents an Open Innovation Laboratory for Rapid Realization of Sensing, Smart and Sustainable Products (S3 Products). The Open Innovation Laboratory is composed of a set of specific resources where students and teachers use them to provide solutions to current problems of priority sectors through the development of a new generation of products. This new generation of products considers the concepts Sensing, Smart, and Sustainable. The Open Innovation Laboratory has been implemented in different courses in the context of New Product Development (NPD) and Integrated Manufacturing Systems (IMS) at Tecnologico de Monterrey. The implementation consists of adapting this Open Innovation Laboratory within the course’s syllabus in combination with the implementation of specific methodologies for product development, learning methods (Active Learning and Blended Learning using Massive Open Online Courses MOOCs) and rapid product realization platforms. Using the concepts proposed it is possible to demonstrate that students can propose innovative and sustainable products, and demonstrate how the learning process could be improved using technological resources applied in the higher educational sector. Finally, examples of innovative S3 products developed at Tecnologico de Monterrey are presented.
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298
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10007652
Indigenous Knowledge and Nature of Science Interface: Content Considerations for Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics Education
Abstract:

Many African countries, such as Zimbabwe and South Africa, have curricula reform agendas that include incorporation of Indigenous Knowledge and Nature of Science (NOS) into school Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) education. It is argued that at high school level, STEM learning, which incorporates understandings of indigenization science and NOS, has the potential to provide a strong foundation for a culturally embedded scientific knowledge essential for their advancement in Science and Technology. Globally, investment in STEM education is recognized as essential for economic development. For this reason, developing countries such as Zimbabwe and South Africa have been investing into training specialized teachers in natural sciences and technology. However, in many cases this training has been detached from the cultural realities and contexts of indigenous learners. For this reason, the STEM curricula reform has provided implementation challenges to teachers. An issue of major concern is the teachers’ pedagogical content knowledge (PCK), which is essential for effective implementation of these STEM curricula. Well-developed Teacher PCK include an understanding of both the nature of indigenous knowledge (NOIK) and of NOS. This paper reports the results of a study that investigated the development of 3 South African and 3 Zimbabwean in-service teachers’ abilities to integrate NOS and NOIK as part of their PCK. A participatory action research design was utilized. The main focus was on capturing, determining and developing teachers STEM knowledge for integrating NOIK and NOS in science classrooms. Their use of indigenous games was used to determine how their subject knowledge for STEM and pedagogical abilities could be developed. Qualitative data were gathered through the use dialogues between the researchers and the in-service teachers, as well as interviewing the participating teachers. Analysis of the data provides a methodological window through which in-service teachers’ PCK can be STEMITIZED and their abilities to integrate NOS and NOIK developed. Implications are raised for developing teachers’ STEM education in universities and teacher training colleges.

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186
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10006632
Myths and Strategies for Teaching Calculus in English for Taiwanese Students: A Report Based on Three-Years of Practice
Authors:
Abstract:
This paper reviews the crucial situation in higher education in Taiwan due to the rapid decline of the birth rate in the past three decades, and how the government and local colleges/universities work to face the challenge. Recruiting international students is one of the possible ways to resolve the problem, but offering enough courses in English is one of the main obstacles when the majority of learners are still Taiwanese students. In the academic year of 2012, Chung Yuan Christian University determined to make its campus international and began to enforce two required courses for freshmen taught in English. It failed in the beginning, but succeeded in the following academic year of 2013. Using the teaching evaluations accumulated in the past three years, this paper aims to clarify the myths which had been bothering most faculties. It also offers some suggestions for college/university teachers interested in giving lectures in English to English as Second Language (ESL) learners. A conclusion is presented at the end of the paper, in which the author explained why Taiwanese students could learn their profession in English.
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239
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10007507
Research on the Transformation of Bottom Space in the Teaching Area of Zijingang Campus, Zhejiang University
Authors:
Abstract:

There is a lot of bottom space in the teaching area of Zijingang Campus of Zhejiang University, which benefits to the ventilation, heat dissipation, circulation, partition of quiet and noisy areas and diversification of spaces. Hangzhou is hot in summer but cold in winter, so teachers and students spend much less time in the bottom space of buildings in winter than in summer. Recently, depending on the teachers and students’ proposals, the school transformed the bottom space in the teaching area to provide space for relaxing, chatting and staying in winter. Surveying and analyzing the existing ways to transform, the paper researches deeply on the transformation projects of bottom space in the teaching buildings. It is believed that this paper can be a salutary lesson to make the bottom space in the teaching areas of universities richer and bring more diverse activities for teachers and students.

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120
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10007850
A SWOT Analysis on Institutional Environments of University of the Punjab
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The major purpose of the study was to identify the institutional environments’ strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats of University of the Punjab, Lahore. The target population of the study was teachers of University of the Punjab Lahore. The sample of 235 teachers (155 males, 80 females) were selected through multistage stratified sampling technique. A questionnaire regarding the institutional environments of University SWOT Analysis “Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities, and Threats” was used to collect the required data for this study. The questionnaire consisted of two parts. The first part comprised of the demographic information (faculty, department, gender, teacher rank), while the second part included the statements regarding SWOT analysis (strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats). Reliability index (Cronbach’s Alpha) of the questionnaire was 0.87, which is statistically acceptable. Analysis of the data indicated that there was significant difference in the opinion of respondents. Teachers of Islamic studies and Laws had difference in their opinions regarding the institutional environment strengths, and opportunities and it was supported by the findings of the study. There was significant difference in opinions of male and female teachers regarding strengths and opportunities of university. And there was no significant difference in opinions of male and female teachers regarding weaknesses and threats of university.

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232
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10006470
Designing and Evaluating Pedagogic Conversational Agents to Teach Children
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In this paper, the possibility of children studying by using an interactive learning technology called Pedagogic Conversational Agent is presented. The main benefit is that the agent is able to adapt the dialogue to each student and to provide automatic feedback. Moreover, according to Math teachers, in many cases students are unable to solve the problems even knowing the procedure to solve them, because they do not understand what they have to do. The hypothesis is that if students are helped to understand what they have to solve, they will be able to do it. Taken that into account, we have started the development of Dr. Roland, an agent to help students understand Math problems following a User-Centered Design methodology. The use of this methodology is proposed, for the first time, to design pedagogic agents to teach any subject from Secondary down to Pre-Primary education. The reason behind proposing a methodology is that while working on this project, we noticed the lack of literature to design and evaluate agents. To cover this gap, we describe how User-Centered Design can be applied, and which usability techniques can be applied to evaluate the agent.
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445
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10006506
A Model for Reverse-Mentoring in Education
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As the term indicates, reverse-mentoring flips the classical roles of mentoring: In school, students take over the role of mentors for adults, i.e. teachers or parents. Originally reverse-mentoring stems from US enterprises, which implemented this innovative method in order to benefit from the resources of skilled younger employees for the enhancement of IT competences of senior colleagues. However, reverse-mentoring in schools worldwide is rare. Based on empirical studies and theoretical approaches, in this article an implementation model for reverse-mentoring is developed in order to bring the significant potential reverse-mentoring has for education into practice.

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715
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