The Extended Project Qualification can act as a bridge between sixth form education and the rigours of investigative learning in Higher Education. We know the vast majority of students struggle to be independent learners and the EPQ gives them experience of this process in a highly personalised context – a topic of their choosing.
However that internal struggle for independent thought and action leads, in my experience, to many teachers spending time mentoring students through the process.
E-authoring software, like nimble® provides support that offers interactivity, and because it’s cloud-based, at a time and place which is convenient to students. These courses can offer support in research methodologies for instance – content is provided with quizzes to test understanding that gives the student greater confidence. The course can demonstrate different types of methodologies, with videos from YouTube and Vimeo to help.
Assessments can then direct the student to other courses which address issues flagged by the assessment process.
If the courses are placed on the college’s Moodle teaching staff can see if/when the student accessed this support and what impact it had subsequently, something OFSTED will like to see I’m sure!
It means students don’t depend on teachers but can use eLearning as a learning tool, something they’ll become increasingly familiar with once they reach university.
Phil Parker, education consultant at eLearning247