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MOTIVATING STUDENTS FOR MAKING EXERCISES IN AN ONLINE COURSE BY PROVIDING THEM SELF-EVALUATION CAPABILITIES

Boekbijdrage - Boekhoofdstuk Conferentiebijdrage

This paper describes the tools and techniques used in an e-learning course on embedded softwaredevelopment. This course is part of the EOLES (Electronics and Optics e-Learning for EmbeddedSystems) program aimed at students of the North-African countries where a private internet connectionis not always reliable. Originally the project was funded as an EU TEMPUS project but it evolvedtowards a self-supporting course coordinated by the University of Limoges in France (UNILIM). Theproject aims to provide a third year bachelor degree program relying exclusively on blended learning,including e-learning and remote laboratories. While the complete EOLES course contains 15 TUs(Technical Units), this paper focusses on one single TU: TU-13, dealing with embedded software development,awarding for 6 ECTUs (European Credit Transfer Units). This TU-13 is steered by the Universityof Leuven in Belgium (KU Leuven), Faculty of Engineering Technology. TU-13 contains acourse on the C programming language, the use of microcontrollers and serial communication but thispaper mainly focuses on the C programming course. The course can be followed online using streamingservices, but a downloadable equivalent is available for those students who do not have access toa reliable internet connection. A typical programming course requires a lot of scaffolding, and thusspecial care was taken in providing the customized support while students are both online and offline.An important idea is providing the students the possibility to ask questions to their peers in an onlinediscussion forum while the instructor still manages this forum and validates the answers. If necessary,the instructor posts an accurate reply. Next to this forum, students get automated offline feedback onthe exercises they make, based on automated software tests provided with default exercise templatesrunning on their proper laptops. Students are requested to submit their solutions at regular time intervals.Although self-evaluation is available, a formal validation of correctness of their exercises is stillnecessary. Finally, the paper discusses a correlation between the students passing all self-evaluationexercises (formative evaluations) and their results of a written examination (summative evaluation)held at the end of the course.
Boek: Proceedings of EDULEARN17
Pagina's: 4984 - 4993
ISBN:978-84-697-3777-4
Jaar van publicatie:2017