Academic journal article International Journal of Cyber Society and Education

Applying Pbl and Zuvio to Enhance English Learning Motivation

Academic journal article International Journal of Cyber Society and Education

Applying Pbl and Zuvio to Enhance English Learning Motivation

Article excerpt

INTRODUCTION

With the development of modern technologies, multimedia has been widely used in the teaching field, exerting a great influence on classroom teaching (Ding & Li, 2011; Neo & Neo, 2004). The learning styles have become more diverse to enhance both self-study and collaborative learning environment (Palloff & Pratt, 2005). Nowadays, learners become more active when they use digital devices in the classroom, and the classroom also becomes more interactive because of the online instructions (Gilakjani, Ismail & Ahmadi, 2011). However, students should not learn from the Internet. Instead, students should investigate and solve the problems with their peers as a team. Moreover, the "student-centered" approach, PBL, not only inspires students' active learning, but also enhances learner autonomy (Keengwe, Onchwari & Onchwari, 2009). Moreover, PBL can be used to integrate and construct knowledge and to allow students to explore the problems in the real world. Therefore, this study aimed to explore the use of PBL and an online peer assessment system in ZUVIO to enhance students' English learning motivation. It was proposed that the two approaches would strengthen students' problem-solving ability, professional knowledge and teamwork abilities.

The study lasting for 1 year was conducted in Feng-Chia University located in central Taiwan. Two Freshman English classes were chosen as the sample. The students in both classes were at the same English level (CEF A2 level). One class (N = 39), assigned to the experimental condition, was given the instructions with PBL and ZUVIO. On the other hand, the other class (N = 43), which was the control group, was given the traditional teaching instructions.

Research Questions

To understand the effectiveness of PBL and ZUVIO in the Freshman English classroom, the following research questions were proposed:

(1) Can combining PBL and ZUVIO improve students' learning motivation?

(2) Can peer assessment inspire students' classroom engagement and teamwork spirit?

LITERATURE REVIEW

The following sections review the features of PBL, learning motivation, ZUVIO and peer assessment method.

Features of Project-Based Learning

The main purpose of PBL is to support students' intrinsic motivation, inspire active learning and guide students to do self-study in a meaningful situation (Polman, 2000; Roessingh & Chambers, 2011; Thomas, Mergendoller & Michaelson, 1999). Polman (2000) mentioned that PBL could increase students' learning motivation and provide an authentic learning environment, that is, PBL is a "student-centered" approach. The teacher acts as a facilitator who guides questions in the classroom (Bell, 2010). Moreover, PBL curriculum design follows 6 criteria listed as follows (Thomas, 2000):

(1) PBL encourages students to carry out more discussions and in-depth investigation.

(2) In PBL, there is no correct answer. Instead, the assigned task guides students to achieve high-level thinking.

(3) PBL can cut into the field and the core of the topic to let students understand the questions.

(4) PBL tasks are challenging, challenging students' willingness to face the tasks, try new things and solve unfamiliar questions.

(5) PBL trains students to gain critical thinking ability.

(6) PBL enhances students' problem-solving ability.

In addition, with the new technology, students can use the Internet on various electronic devices to investigate, inquire about, and look for answers through PBL process (ChanLin, 2008). In short, to develop a perfect PBL curriculum, teachers need to set teaching goals and choose appropriate assessment methods. Next, teachers need to check the resources they can use in the classroom and consider students' prior knowledge. Subsequently, the students can work on the projects and create group presentations in class (Wang, Teng & Lin, 2015).

Compared to the traditional assessment methods, the assessment methods of PBL are quite diverse, including portfolios, presentations, reports, and so on (Bell, 2010; Wang, Teng & Lin, 2015). …

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