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The use of emerging technologies for authentic learning – Presentation at the CISCO African Networking Academy Safari 2012

These are the presentations we did at yesterday’s CISCO African Networking Academy Safari 2012.


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Digital storytelling and student engagement: A case of pre-service student teachers and their lecturers’ at a University of Technology

This is the paper Eunice Ivala is going to present at the ICEL 2012 conference.


One of the challenges facing higher education institutions in South Africa is low throughput of students. Although there is empirical evidence to support the view that enhancing students’ engagement increases student’s academic performance, little is known about effective approaches to create students’ sustained engagement with learning resources. This paper argues that use of digital stories has potential to foster students’ engagement with their studies which could impact on student’s success. Student engagement (the amount of physical and psychological energy that students devote to educationally purposeful activities) is one of the factors shown empirically to enhance student success at higher education institutions. In response to the above challenge, this study investigated  the potential of digital storytelling in enhancing student levels of engagement with their studies amongst 29 final year pre-service student teachers and their lecturers’ at the Cape Peninsula University of Technology (CPUT), South Africa, as part of their final year professional development course. Using Andersons (2003) model of learning interactions, the researchers were able to analyse, understand and describe the potential of digital storytelling in enhancing student engagement with their studies. The study employed qualitative methods of collecting data. Focus group interviews were conducted with the students and the facilitators of the project to elicit whether the production of digital stories led to student engagement. Focus group interviews were recorded on tape, transcribed and analysed focusing on the identification of conceptual themes and issues emerged.  The data analysis techniques, in particular clustering, making contrast and comparisons were used.  Findings of the study showed that the production of digital stories enhanced student levels of engagement with their studies, which led to a deep understanding of the subject matter.

Keywords: student engagement, model of learning interactions, digital storytelling, digital stories, digital literacy skills


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Fundani to host ICEL 2013!

Fundani will be hosting the 2013 International Conference on eLearning (ICEL 2013) at our beautiful conference venue in Granger Bay. Dr Eunice Ivala is currently on her way to Hong Kong, this year’s conference venue, to invite participants to next year’s event.

Watch this space!

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Wikis in education – tools for development of subject knowledge and key academic skills

Topic: Wikis in Education
Faciliator: Roisin Kelly-Laubscher, UCT
Date:   Thursday, 7th of June 2012, 14.00-16.00
Venue: Room B108, Computer Room, First floor (left wing), Old Science Building, Bellville

Workshop description

In general terms a wiki is a website to which users can add, edit and delete content. However in education a Wiki can be a space for your students to practice skills in academic literacy, collaboration and using computers, build-up a resource for themselves and others and learn while writing, reading, viewing and linking. There are many sites where people can create Wikis for their class but this workshop will focus on a site called “Wikispaces” which provides an easy to use interface with tools that enhance its use in education.

During the workshop you will create your own Wikipage on which you will learn how to write, edit, format, add pictures and links and publish. You will also engage with possible uses of a Wiki in education including a specific example of an educational “Anatomy Wiki” developed by first year Medical students at the University of Cape Town.

About the facilitator: Dr Roisin Kelly-Laubscher lectures Anatomy & Physiology at the Department of Human Biology, University of Cape Town. She is one of a team of lecturers involved in a foundation programme for students who failed subjects of mainstream programmes within the Department of Health and Rehabilitation Sciences. Topics covered in first semester Anatomy in mainstream are revisited. To avoid re-lecturing the same material an anatomy course was developed in an online environment which would encourage them to practice key skills such as academic literacy, computer literacy and time management.

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Rapid eLearning workshop – a lecturer’s best friend

Topic: Rapid eLearning workshop
Faciliators: Linda Mkhize, Fundani and Lulama Siyotywa , Centre for eLearning
Date:   Thursday, 17 May 2012, 14.00-16.00
Venue:  B109 in Science Building, Bellville

Workshop description:

Working with MS PowerPoint as the integrative tool, this workshop aims to empower lecturers to design and develop more engaging learning materials without any programming, graphical design or other multi‑media authoring skills.

We will combine text, graphics, audio and video by using the following Rapid e‑Learning tools:

  • PowerPoint audio and video functionalities
  • iSpring
  • Audacity
  • Format Factory
  • Publishing tools (LMS and Web)


By the end of the workshop participant will:

  1. Understand the basics of audio and video and how it can be incorporated into a presentation or course content.
  2. Have seen rapid e‑Learning in action
  3. Have had hands-on interaction with the freely available Rapid e‑Learning tools
  4. Have learnt how to publish PowerPoint presentations on the web and as well as on the LMS.

To book your place please email gachagod@cput.ac.za


Workshop resources

The following tools are free and readily available to download and use:

iSpring            http://www.ispringsolutions.com
Audacity         http://audacity.sourceforge.net
Format Factory         http://www.formatoz.com



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WS: The use of technologies for the identification of Students at Risk

Facilitator: Izak Smit, Director Centre for E-Learning
Venue: Training lab, Centre for e-Learning, E-Learning building, Cape Town campus
Date: Thursday 19 April 2012
Time: 14:00 to 16:00
If you are teaching a subject that has been identified as an At Risk Subject, then this workshop will shed light on the technologies available to you to identify students who have problems that may put them at risk of failure and allow you, the lecturer, to start immediate remedial activities to assist struggling students.
Workshop resources
Recording of session: Sakkie Smit presentation
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