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‘I’m worried about the correctness’: undergraduate students as producers of screencasts of mathematical explanations for their peers ‒ lecturer and student perceptions. (English)
Int. J. Math. Educ. Sci. Technol. 44, No. 7, 1045-1055 (2013).
Summary: Undergraduate mathematics is traditionally designed and taught by content experts with little contribution from students. Indeed, there are signs that there is resistance from mathematics lecturers to involve students in the creation of material to support their peers ‒ notwithstanding the fact that students have been successfully engaged as co-creators of material in other disciplines. There appears to be little research into what issues may lead to reservations to using student-created content in mathematics learning. This paper takes a case study approach to investigate the reasons for lecturers’ resistance to undergraduate student contributions to learning material, in particular with a view to the production of screencasts of mathematical explanations. It also investigates the views of students producing mathematical screencasts. This study is part of a larger research project investigating undergraduate involvement in mathematics module design. Four second-year students, who were producing mathematics screencasts as part of an internship, and five academics, were interviewed to gain an understanding of their views of the value of student screencasts. The interviews focused on the particular contributions students make to screencasts, outcomes for the students and level of lecturer acceptance of these resources. We argue that students benefit from creating screencasts for their peers by gaining deeper mathematical understanding, improved technological skills and developing other generic skills required of today’s graduates. In contrast, we confirm lecturer resistance to using student-generated screencasts in their teaching materials. Lecturer reservations pertain to students’ lack of mathematical maturity and concerns over the mathematical integrity of the content that students produce. We conclude that close collaboration between students and lecturers during the design and production phases of screencasts may help lecturers overcome reservations, whilst preserving the benefits for students. In addition, we provide evidence that the process is a valuable professional development opportunity for the lecturers themselves.
Classification: C25 C35
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