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Fons Vernooij



INnovation IN Computer Assisted Study At home

New media and their role in education

New media and their role in education (paper-presentation)
Fons Vernooij, Thomas Thijssen en Remco Schermerhorn. (2001). Paper at the 8th EDINEB International Conference in Nice. The theme of the Conference was: Technology, Pedagogy and Innovation.

To investigate the relationships between learning outcomes and new media a tool was developed to describe the functionalities and disfunctionalities of media. In the attached paper the relationships are described. The presentation in PowerPoint of this paper is here downloadable.


Digital learning as a learning facilitator has been an object of study in many research projects in the past decade. However, in these studies traditional views on learning are often transferred in a one-to-one relationship from the classroom model to the digital environment. This view does not sufficiently account for the new potentials or restrictions of the media through which instruction takes place. Neither does it account for the mutual influence of media.

Essential to distance learning is the way digital media support the learner. It is important to know what expectations users have from computer assisted studying. More and more knowledge workers develop the ability to formulate their own individual learning aims to acquire the skills necessary for corporate leadership. They try to optimize their study program with a mix of media and are incorporating the computer as a facilitator.

Knowledge workers also generate expectations towards the media and these expectations will change or grow incrementally in time as they become more experienced. If a medium has the potential to assist learning processes, learners automatically expect the software to exploit this potential.

High expectations are set for the application of digital media to instruction. Enthusiastic studies are interchanged with critical ones. In this paper we present a conceptual framework to guide decision making, regarding the development of effective learning environments that entail the functionalities of new media.

We focus on the functionalities, both activated and potential, and the disfunctionalities of media in relationship to the pedagogical assumptions that underlie a course. Based on this we are in pursuit of an optimal mix of media, old and new. Our central research question is: 'What combination of media offers an optimal mix of learning functions to support the activities necessary to reach the desired learning outcomes?'

New media and the role of teachers

New media and the role of teachers (paper-presentation)
A report on new practices at the Johan Cruyff University
Fons Vernooij and Thomas Thijssen. (2001). Paper at the 8th Edineb International Conference in Nice. The theme of the Conference was: Technology, Pedagogy and Innovation.

At the EDINEB conference in Nice a second paper was presented to describe the role of teachers at the Johan Cruyff University as influenced by the application of competency based learning and the introduction of new media. The presentation in PowerPoint of this paper is here downloadable.


A report on new practices at the Johan Cruyff University in Amsterdam

The Johan Cruyff University is founded at Johan Cruyff's instigation to offer top-class players an opportunity to combine a career in sport with an education in commercial economics. Once these players finish their career, they are able to accept leading jobs either in marketing departments of companies involved in sponsoring, or in sport organizations involved in organizing large sport-events.

The students live all over Holland and participate in training and sport events all over the world. In order to support the study of those students, new media are introduced to overcome the problems of time and space. But not only the opportunities of the world wide web are explored to create new learning and testing arrangements, the role of the teachers is adapted to the new reality as well.

The first characteristic of the curriculum is the formulation of learning outcomes in terms of competencies. These are understood as a combination of knowledge, skills and behavior. A set of competencies is defined by the staff, but the students must formulate their desired learning outcomes every block.

At the end of every term of 10 weeks, students demonstrate their competencies in different ways. They participate in assessments and they develop their own web site to present their assignments and their reports. This web site contains a portfolio, accessible for teachers and (partly) for their fellow students.

The second characteristic is the splitting up of the function of the teacher in different roles performed by different persons. Well stated roles are the navigator, the trainer, the instructor, the consultant and the assessor. They focus respectively on coaching, skill training, knowledge transfer, consulting and judging the students development.

The navigator and the assessor have a permanent relation to the student, in order to support a continuing growth in competencies. Every ten weeks the assessor discusses the development of the students competencies referring to the students list of personal learning outcomes.

The third characteristic is the use of internet to contact fellow students and consultants. To activate the students while they are busy with their sports, special projects are started, like playing a management game, such as Trade Company. Students operate as a team and take decisions, whilst they overcome the problems of time and space using the communication facilities of Internet.

Problems they cannot solve themselves, they can present to a consultant with e-mail. The consultant reacts not only to the students but builds up a list of frequently asked questions in order to help other students who run in the same problem. This way e-mail and internet are complementary to each other.

At the conference all these characteristics and more will be presented. Behind the new practices are ideas about the innovation in pedagogy, explained by the presentation of an innovation matrix, relating learning outcomes and media used in education.

Fons Vernooij and Thomas Thijssen (2001).

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