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College of Science, Engineering and Technology

CSET Research Flagship 1: ODL Research

Flagship Project Leader: Dr Eeva Rapoo

Background:

While other higher education institutions all over the world have been struggling to implement ODL teaching in Science, Engineering and Technology, CSET at UNISA has been doing it for many years. Thus ODL practice forms a natural area of research focus for CSET, and indeed several individuals or small groups within the college are already doing research in various aspects of ODL.

This flagship project builds on:

  • The day-to-day need within the CSET for practical and innovative solutions to the problems of teaching science, engineering, technology and mathematics subjects at a distance.
  • The already existing innovative and pioneering high-level ODL practice and research in the CSET, and our capacity to innovate and implement solution involving ICT and other technologies in teaching

Research aim:

To contribute to scientific knowledge on the ‘what’ and how’ of SET teaching and learning in ODL contexts through substantive, ongoing research. The general topic of research will be technology as an enabler in ODL, with technology seen in its widest meaning. Initially, we are envisaging the following two broad research areas:

  • Research into the impact/effectiveness of existing technology (e.g.. myUnisa, CAI, video/satellite technology)
  • Innovation: Research and development beyond what exists, but rather what should exist (e.g. automated assessment, etc

Development/Capacity building aims:

  • Improve lecturers’ knowledge bases in ODL
  • Improve CSET lecturers’ competence in teaching SET in ODL contexts
  • Provide exemplars of excellence in ODL SET teaching.