Opportunities for learning provided by a "flexible delivery" environment

Year: 2000


Type of paper: Abstract refereed

The study described here was part of a larger study evaluating activities at the University of Queensland's "state of the art" purpose-built campus for "flexible delivery" at Ipswich, Queensland. We describe the various learning opportunities identified by three university teachers, each from a different faculty, as they planned for, and implemented, subjects based at the Ipswich campus. Data were gathered through interviews and discussions with the teachers and their students, classroom observations, and collection of artefacts, such as teacher diaries of activities and planning materials. Teachers noted that the widely held and publicized expectation that the new campus would provide different and better opportunities for learning and teaching was borne out for the most part in their experiences during the semester. Students' and teachers' perspectives on the quality of learning taking place were enhanced; opportunities were created for teachers to experiment with ideas to enhance learning using a variety of strategies and technologies. Some awareness was shown by teaching staff of issues related to the interactions amongst beliefs about teaching and learning, teaching practices and students' developing perceptions of learning. However, there are clear implications for the continuing professional development of teachers in higher education "flexible delivery" situations.