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Student use of a self paced, interactive, computer based learning resource in human biology

David Coall
The University of Western Australia
In response to the diverse student backgrounds (intellectual ability, level of maturity, physical needs, culture, etc) and the advantages of interactive instruction for learning outcomes, the Department of Anatomy and Human Biology developed a self paced, interactive, computer based learning resource titled Primate Biology (referred to as the Primate Biology CD here after). In 2001 this computer assisted learning (CAL) program has been fully implemented into the first year unit, Human Biology 100. Now that the program is operational it is necessary to assess student usage of the Primate Biology CD and its impact on student learning.

The first stage of this research, a qualitative and quantitative analysis of student use, will be detailed in this paper. 345 (72%) Human Biology 100 students completed a questionnaire; of these 162 (47%) used the Primate Biology CD during the lab times and 144 (42%) used it outside of their lab times. In total 218 (63%) students surveyed used the Primate Biology CD at least once, either in or out of their lab times. Of the 144 students who accessed the Primate Biology CD outside of their lab times 111 (77%) used it once or twice and on average they spent 65 minutes using the Primate Biology CD. The most commonly used aspects of the Primate Biology CD and the students' affective rating of the CD will also be discussed. This research will be expanded in the future to establish the impact of these patterns of use on student learning via direct comparisons with student marks.

Author: David Coall, PhD Student, Department of Anatomy and Human Biology, TheUniversity of Western Australia. dcoall@anhb.uwa.edu.au

Presentation format: Roundtable

Please cite as: Coall, D. (2002). Student use of a self paced, interactive, computer based learning resource in human biology. In Focusing on the Student. Proceedings of the 11th Annual Teaching Learning Forum, 5-6 February 2002. Perth: Edith Cowan University. http://lsn.curtin.edu.au/tlf/tlf2002/abstracts/coall-abs.html


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