"Using Web 2.0 Teaching Tools for Motivating Students and Engaging Them in Creative Thinking"
International Tutorial

at The 20th International Conference on Computers in Education (ICCE 2012)

November 26, 2012 (Monday) to November 30, 2012 (Friday), Singapore


“Web 2.0” creates a platform for users to interact and collaborate in a social setting as the owner of the content unlike the websites where users are just passive receivers. “Web 2.0” allows students to have an active role in their learning experience by letting them share information and collaborate on the internet.

There are numerous “Web 2.0” tools available, but many of them are not designed specifically for education. However, they can be implemented in a learning scenario. There are many websites and blogs that provide lists for “Web 2.0” tools for education. It is often the case that thorough descriptions of learning scenarios and pedagogical use of these tools are lacking, though. For a more effective education, it is important to put effort not only to the use of “Web 2.0 “ tools, but also to build on pedagogy and educational guidelines for well designed learning scenarios. Thus, rather than listing and showing how to use “Web 2.0” tools for education, we will focus on the pedagogical aspects of the “Web 2.0” tools design. We will demonstrate the use of selected “Web 2.0” tools and their connection to contemporary motivation and learning theories such as “Self Determination Theory” of  “Socratic Questioning”.

Description of the tutorial event

Equipment needs: Participants may bring their own laptop. Internet connection is a must.

Part 1 - Introduction (5 min.):

This tutorial will start with a brief introduction to Web 2.0 tools and their potentials for teaching and learning. The introduction will include the following items:

- Introduction to Web 2.0, benefits of Web 2.0 tools and differences compared to Web 1.0

- Emerging trends in educational technologies and the importance of Web 2.0 tools as collaborative and dynamic knowledge – meaning building tools.

Part 2 - Specific pedagogical use of Web 2.0 tools (7 min.):

After the introduction, the tutorial pictures the specific pedagogical use of Web 2.0 tools related to contemporary motivation and learning theories including “Self Determination Theory” and “Unified Learning Model” (7 min.). This part will include the following items:

- Introduction to Self Determination Theory and the potential use of Web 2.0 tools to satisfy motivational factors defined therein.

- The Socratic Method’s potential for improving motivation using Web 2.0 tools for Socratic Questioning.

- Introduction to “Unified Learning Model” and its connections to Web 2.0.

Part 3 – Pedagogical Use of Selected Example Web 2.0 Tools (45 min.):

After picturing the specific pedagogical use of Web 2.0 tools, the tutorial will show how to use selected Web 2.0 tools by examples illustrating how these tools are connected to motivation and learning theories as well as other pedagogical potentials. This part will contain three different example scenarios with hands-on training with the participants under the supervision of tutors. For each example sessions, one of the three tutors will guide the exercise. The other two tutors will be assist. The selected example tools are as follows:

1- Using Socratic Method for Motivation with Voice Thread.

by Dr. Sebastian Feller

In order to increase student motivation, teaching practices should ideally focus on didactical methods that promote intrinsic motivation, i.e. motivation that is inherent to an activity as such.  Socratic Questioning helps increase intrinsic motivation by creating an environment for self-regulated learning. This method can also be used to teach expert mental models through conceptual change, facilitating  high-level thinking in the learner.

In this part of the tutorial, we will first of all describe how and why Socratic Questioning motivates learners by giving examples from the pertinent literature with special reference to Self Determination Theory. Then we will give an example of language teaching with the help of Voice Thread web 2.0 tool. This session will include hands-on training . We will practice the use of Socratic Questioning within the Voice Thread tool together with the participants.

2- Cognitive Mapping with BubblUs and Connection to Unified Learning Model

by Dr. Ilker Yengin

         Cognitive mapping is a technique used for structuring and managing messy or complex data for understanding and easy access (C Eden & Ackermann, 1998; Colin Eden, 2004; Colin Eden & Ackermann, 2004). Shum et al. (Shum, Li, Domingue, & Motta, 2003) suggest that cognitive maps are the most intuitive way for argumentation visualizations and they are easy to manage with less cognitive load. Cognitive mapping can be a strategic tool that shows someone’s conceptualization of a domain (Colin Eden, 1992). The technique is build on Kelly’s theory of personal construct (Kelly, 1992). According to Kelly, individuals have constructs that represent meaning and help to make sense of the world. However, this theory also suggests that each individual has their own conceptualization and that the structure may vary across individuals.

One of the main advantages is that due to their two-dimensional representation cognitive maps are well suited for visualization. Even though conceptualization my initially differ from person to person, cognitive maps are well suited to communicate one’s own concepts and their relation (Johnson & Johnson, 2002).

In this part of the tutorial, we will discuss and demonstrate how to use Bubbl.Us to create cognitive maps to illustrate group discussions for creative idea generation. We will first examine the pedagogic design for group discussions, and then focus on how to use the Bubble US tool. In the pedagogic design part, we will present the essentials of argumentations for idea generation and visualization of these argumentations. Then we will present how to use Bubble.US for visualizing these argumentations. This session will include hands-on training. We will practice an idea generation session together with participants using relevant Web 2.0 tools.

Click Here to Learn More About Cognitive Mapping Techniques

3- Collaborative Writing with TypeWithMe

by Asst. Prof. Bojan Lazarevic.

TypeWithMe is a collaborative writing tool which allows multiple users to work synchronously on the same document. It is a very simplistic tool and it does not require the user to create an account. However, TypeWithMe is still a controlled environment and the users can manage access to the document and make it private or public. This feature will prevent putting students at risk of encountering virtual predators. Students or teachers share a document with the entire class simply by sending a link. The link remains active unless it is permanently deleted, which means that students can use it over and over again. Each text contributor has a different background color for their font, which makes the document very clear and it is easy to distinguish whose text is whose.

TypeWithMe would be an effective way for students to peer edit their work online and share their work with their teachers. It can be also a very handy tool for organizing students’ ideas to start with some bigger project. This tool can be especially useful for smaller projects and collaborative writing within a limited time frame. Thus, this tool can be label as a “quick tool” for connecting students and putting them in one single working environment because the entire setup can be done in less than 30 seconds. In addition, the tool can be easily incorporated within online learning platforms.

The simplicity of this tool can be viewed as both an advantage and a disadvantage. Since the tool has just basic text formatting options, students are more likely to stay on task and do only what they have to do. Often instructional tools have way too many features and students become very distracted and overloaded. However, its downside refers to the lack of other formatting options (visuals, audio) which does not give students much room for creative expression. In this tutorial we will present the entire tool and its features. As mentioned before the tool is simple and easy to use, thus there is almost no learning curve.


Examples of materials

  1. Buble Us: Bubble US allows you to create interactive cognitive-maps.
  1. Voice Thread: It allows users to a collaborative group conversation using multimedia slide shows, documents, and videos.

       3.       TypeWithMe: This application provides an excellent environment for collaborative writing I project building.

About The Tutors

Asst. Prof. Bojan Lazarevic

 Mount Saint MaryCollege, Division of Mathematics and Information Technology, NY, USA

Bojan Lazarevic's educational background is in general pedagogy/adult education with a media and distance learning emphasis. He received a PhD in instructional technology from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln.

Prior to coming to Mount Saint Mary College, Professor Lazarevic worked as an instructor at the University of Belgrade-Serbia for eight years, where he taught courses such as Media and Education, Pedagogy of Communication, and Methodology of Adult Elementary Education. He also taught the course TEAC 259: Instructional Technology for pre-service teachers at the University of Nebraska for three years.

His research interest is in online instruction, cognition and technology, production of multimedia instructional materials, as well as open source software and Web 2.0 applications.

To date, he has published two books and a number of papers in both journals and proceedings.

Dr. Sebastian Fellers 

 A*STAR, Institute ofHigh Performance Computing Singapore

Sebastian Feller holds a degree in theoretical linguistics and communication studies from the University of Muenster, Germany. His expertise lies in theories of meaning and dialog analysis. He has taught a variety of linguistic modules at the University of Muenster as well as at Majan University College in Muscat, Oman, including written discourse, English as a global language, business English, and corpus linguistics. He has joined A*STAR, Institute of High Performance Computing, Singapore in late 2011 and is currently working for the Social Situation Awareness Project. He currently investigates dialog models for intelligent tutoring systems based on verbal and non-verbal channels of communication. His research interests include lexical semantics, dialog analysis, interaction pragmatics, and human robot interaction.

Dr. Ilker Yengin

 A*STAR, Institute ofHigh Performance Computing Singapore

Dr.Yenign’s expertise focuses on design of interaction processes that enhance learners’ motivation and deep thinking. After graduating from “Instructional Technology” program at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln, Dr.Yengin joined A*STAR, Institute of High Performance Computing, Singapore. He is studying the role of technology on learning and its impacts on our emotion, cognition and everyday social - academic life. His research interests are in instructional technology, emotion and cognition in learning, human computer interaction, and human robot interaction.


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