E-learning in an Undergraduate Course in Research Methods for the Social Sciences: Reflections on Teaching

Abstract

Starting with an overview of the opportunities provided by e-learning in the educational environment, this paper discusses a blended course in social science methodology offered to around 160 students taking the undergraduate Sociology degree at the University of Salerno (Italy). In particular, it provides a reflection on ten challenges of the discipline (e.g. relationship theory and practice, quantitative vs qualitative methods) which emerged during our teaching experience and discusses how they might be addressed by adopting e-learning. To evaluate the impact of the blended course upon the experience of learner, a web survey involving 114 students is carried out. Principally, the survey focuses on the study method and the relationship between information and communication technologies (ICT) and learning. The process that we followed (reflection on the characteristics of the discipline and the needs of students, implementation of the blended course, evaluation) aims to design a valuable teaching path requiring a renewed commitment on the part of university lecturers. In this paper we argue that a blended course improved the educational process in terms of knowledge construction and reflexivity.

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Diana P., Catone M. C. (2016) "E-learning in an Undergraduate Course in Research Methods for the Social Sciences: Reflections on Teaching " Italian Journal of Sociology of Education, 8(2), 110-142. DOI: 10.14658/PUPJ-IJSE-2016-2-6  
Year of Publication
2016
Journal
Italian Journal of Sociology of Education
Volume
8
Issue Number
2
Start Page
110
Last Page
142
Date Published
06/2016
ISSN Number
2035-4983
Serial Article Number
6
DOI
10.14658/PUPJ-IJSE-2016-2-6
Issue
Section
SpecialSection