The Effect of Web-Based Collaborative Learning Methods to the Accounting Courses in Technical Education
Cheng, K. W. Kevin, College Student Journal
The research findings and proposed suggestions would serve as a reference for the development of accounting-related curricula and teaching strategies. To achieve the above objective, students of two classes in a technical College were selected as research subjects. Students in the first-year class of the 4-year hotel management program were assigned to the experimental group 1, which were treated with "web-based collaborative method", and students in the first-year class of the 4-year leisure recreation tourism program were assigned to the comparison group, with "the traditional lecturing method" adopted. The result showed that the difference between the two classes reached the significance level, and the problem-solving attitudes of the experimental 1 was significantly better than that of the comparison group.
With the advent of knowledge economy in the 21st century, every nation is making every effort to develop itself toward technological advancement and globalization. To meet global demands and maintain leading competitiveness, enhancing the quality of nationals is a prerequisite and a key to development of knowledge economy. And the essential solution to the improvement of civil quality lies in comprehensive education that can equip students with professional knowledge, technology, creativity, and problem-solving abilities. Providing appropriate courses and learning environments through school education is the only way to maintain national competitiveness. According to the Guideline of Grade 1-9 Integrated Curriculum in Taiwan also highlights on independent thinking and problem-solving abilities (Ministry of Education in Taiwan, 2006). From the above, it can be inferred that education is to cultivate students and equip them with good learning abilities, creativity, and problem-solving abilities. Simply put, the current education focuses are placed on "practical abilities" instead of traditional "dogmatic education". Huang and Lin (2000) pointed out that education can be delivered through 3 methods, including collaborative learning, competitive learning, and individual learning. Collaborative learning refers to joint construction of knowledge by a group of people with a shared commitment to a common goal (Sharan, 1980; Bouton & Garth, 1983). Many studies have empirically proved that collaborative learning can enhance the learning effectiveness (Johnson, Johnson, & Smith, 1995).
Moreover, in recent years, due to the advancement of computers and Internet technologies, the virtual environment constructed on the Internet has allowed the implementation of collaborative learning to be no longer confined to traditional classrooms, making the application of technology-integrated instructions an inevitable tendency. With the abundance, flexibility, interactivity, and boundlessness of the Internet, the conventional linear and progressive learning methods can be subverted. Students can not only learn at individual pace but also cross the boundaries of time and space to take part in group discussions. Therefore, many scholars have promoted the Internet as an ideal medium for collaborative learning, and Computer-Supported Collaborative Learning (CSCL) was originated in such background. So far, many empirical studies have indicated that CSCL can effectively enhance students' learning effectiveness (Wilson, 1996; Dillenbourg, 1999).
Realizing the benefits of CSCL for learners, this study aims to apply the concepts of CSCL to the study of accounting and explore the effects of this instruction "web-based collaborative method" on students' problem solving attitudes.
Piaget (1959) indicated that human's cognitive development is determined by environmental manipulation and active participation and strongly supported that group work can provide more cognitive benefits than individual work (Golbeck & Sinagra, 2000; Druyan, 2001). …