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Creating Authentic Learning Environments: A Strategy for Student Engagement and Deeper Learning in Introductory Statistics

Fitzsimmons, Jason R., Williams, Jeremy B., & Ma, Shan (2005) Creating Authentic Learning Environments: A Strategy for Student Engagement and Deeper Learning in Introductory Statistics. In OLT Conference, September, QUT, Brisbane. (Unpublished)

Abstract

For many university students (particularly the ‘numerically-challenged’!), the introductory statistics course is viewed with great trepidation. Branded ‘sadistics’ by some because they find it so torturous, one of the biggest challenges facing statistics educators is to convince learners of the subject’s worth. Even in a Masters of Business Administration (MBA) program – the context of this study – students often fail to see the relevance of statistical thinking to their day-to-day management roles. To resolve this problem, the authors of this paper proffer an alternative approach that makes use of authentic learning environments. The key principle underpinning this approach is that, regardless of how clearly statistical concepts are explained in the classroom, students tend not to fully understand until these concepts have been validated by prior knowledge. Constructivist pedagogy is therefore of critical importance to student learning which, harnessing the power of the various information and communication technologies (ICTs), has the capacity to engage learners even in a subject traditionally regarded as dull and boring.

Impact and interest:

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ID Code: 6491
Item Type: Conference Paper
Keywords: Introductory Statistics, Jason Fitzsimmons, Shan Ma, MBA students, Authentic Learning Environments, HERN
Subjects: Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > EDUCATION (130000) > CURRICULUM AND PEDAGOGY (130200)
Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > EDUCATION (130000) > SPECIALIST STUDIES IN EDUCATION (130300) > Educational Administration Management and Leadership (130304)
Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > EDUCATION (130000)
Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > EDUCATION (130000) > CURRICULUM AND PEDAGOGY (130200) > Vocational Education and Training Curriculum and Pedagogy (130213)
Divisions: Current > QUT Faculties and Divisions > QUT Business School
Copyright Owner: Copyright 2005 (The authors)
Deposited On: 13 Mar 2007
Last Modified: 05 Jan 2011 23:30

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