From file repository to narrative journey: a trilayered framework for enhancing students' online learning experiences
Eager, BE and Lehman, KF and Scollard, JM, From file repository to narrative journey: a trilayered framework for enhancing students' online learning experiences, Tasmanian Institute of Learning and Teaching (TILT), 26 November, University of Tasmania (2019) [Conference Edited]
PDF (From file repository to narrative journey: a tri-layered framework for enhancing students' online learning experiences) Pending copyright assessment - Request a copy 2Mb
Online platforms, such as MyLO, have a vital role to play in delivering quality learning outcomes (Czerkawski
& Lyman, 2016). Yet, despite calls for academics to transcend the mindset of online learning environments as
file repositories (Conole & Fill, 2005), the practice somewhat persists. Research finds, as does our anecdotal
experiences, that students evaluate online materials based on what they find interesting, and what materials
represent value-add investments (Biggs & Tang, 2011). When presented with materials, students likely
question, ‘Why should I bother reading this article?’, ‘Will watching this video help me complete upcoming
assessments?’ To be successful in delivering online learning offerings it is necessary for universities to
provide students with value-driven offerings, and academics (who may have limited instructional design
experience) with templates to guide online unit creation.
The tri-layered framework described in this paper places user experience (UX) at the forefront of MyLO unit
design and is aimed at providing a logic to the structure of online learning materials; thereby enhancing
students’ online experiences and providing a template for academic staff when creating course materials.
The three levels of narrative we propose are: (1) unit, (2) module and (3) assessment. The (1) unit-level
narrative focuses on signposting/guiding students through the unit, including: an introduction to the module
and explanation of how completing the weekly materials will assist in achieving the unit’s intended learning
outcomes. Students are provided with a self-monitoring checklist of weekly materials and assessment
deadlines and a weekly summary. The (2) module-level narrative prescribes the accompaniment of
prompting questions with any materials in order to direct the students’ engagement with content. Lastly,
embedding the (3) assessment-level narrative alongside all materials provides students with justification as
to how the provided material(s) helps them complete study tasks and assessments.
The framework was implemented in a third-year undergraduate Bachelor of Business unit – student
satisfaction increased (from 2018 to 2019) by ~30% to 99.2% for face-to-face students (flipped learning
environment) and ~40% to 90.9% for the online cohort. Further investigation is required to assess the
potential of the tri-layered narrative framework in enhancing student experience.
online learning, pedagogy, higher education, learning management system