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Framing questions for the case studies

Page history last edited by Chris 9 years, 4 months ago

If you would like to build a case study, please use the following headings and questions for guidance. Please link to publicly available materials/ reports etc on your own websites/ wikis/ other storage spaces.


Copy and paste the questions on to a new page, make sure the title of the page is clear and unambiguous. We will then link your case study into the rest of the wiki. Please let Gary Motteram know (gary.motteram@manchester.ac.uk) if you add a case study once the project is completed so he can link it in.


Pre-course preparation:

Decision making process

What was your starting point in thinking about the design of the virtual course? For example, did you make use of any instructional design models from the literature or any other model, one you had created yourself, perhaps? If you did not make use of any existing models, what initial decisions did you take to design your course?


If you used an instructional design model for your virtual course, was this model driven by any learning or teaching theories?  Similarly, if you did not use a model, was your decision making about the design of your virtual course guided by any teaching or learning theories?


Who's decision was it to set up an internet based course at your institution? Is the process top-down, bottom-up, both (if both, then depending on what?). What exactly (if anything) is predetermined and imposed and what is up to you to decide?


How were these shaped by the subject matter of the course, the age group of learners, the more general context of a) learners, b) tutors, c) institution running the course, d) other factors.

How will the mutual benefit of a virtual online course for students taking the course from different disciplines/universities/countries (etc.) be established? 



How was the course funded, initially? If you are still running courses, how are they funded? Is it a commercial or non-commercial course? Fee-paying/non-fee paying? 

What issues may surface with respect to student fees? (For example, will there be state funding for students who are not registered to a university but who are taking a online virtual course?) Consider this in the light of the fact that we are trying to build links between institutions as part of the project.



Is it an open/closed environment? Why? What was the experience either way?

What kind of preparation took place for learners to work in the environment.


Institutional embedding/ support

Is the internet based course part of a larger program (graduate, postgraduate ) or does it "stand on its own"?
If the internet based course is part of a larger program, do all courses in the same program have an internet based component or is this one the exception? If the internet based course is the exception, then in what sense/to what extent is its perceived as an asset in the general program design?



Were/ are students of other institutions engaged in the course? When a learner appears how do we know it is the registered learner?

Have the participants received previous SL training? In which format [video tutorials, workshops]/ how long?



How were/ will virtual worlds be implemented?  As blended learning, as distant learning, compulsory,…?

How are the sessions organized? [number of participants/ duration]

What are the roles of administrators?

What are the needs of administrators/ course designers/ course tutors/ learners?


Course syllabus  (didactics)

Have the activities/ tasks that are going to be part of the course been tested before the course?

Who has designed the activities/tasks? [instructor self or external]

Has the course syllabus been validated by external bodies?

Do all the activities/tasks have the same design format/criteria?

How are these activities/tasks linked to their actual course content? [if the course is not entirely given in a virtual world]

What is the weight of tasks/activities in the course grade?



What resources have been prepared for your course?

Do participants have access to preparatory documents before tasks/activities take place in virtual worlds?


Advertising of the course

What were the experiences in advertising the course?


During the course

Technical issues and support

Did learners have access to technical support during the sessions? [if so, in which form?]

What technical issues were experienced, if any? Most frequently experienced issues?

If there were technical issues, how were they dealt with/resolved? Most common ways of solving issues?



How was the interaction/communication between tutors and learners/learners and learners during the classes/outside of the classes?



Were resources shared/used/distributed effectively?


Ethical issues

Did any ethical concerns arise (e.g. from students or tutors) and how were they dealt with?

Any discipline issues? How were they dealt with?


Post- course


Was there any formative assessment (week by week), if so, how was this done?

What other types of assessment?

Accreditation issues?

How were any appeals against grades dealt with?



How was the whole course evaluated? [by what means-e.g. interviews? and who did the evaluation?]

Were perspectives of different parties (course designer, course tutor, administrator, learner) taken in the evaluation?

Evaluation of tasks/materials:

Were tasks/activities evaluated individually?

Peer evaluation?

How have the tasks/activities contributed to the goals of the course?

How have the resources/materials contributed to the goals of the course?

How has the evaluation been used?



Have you shown the course to others in your institution or elsewhere? Has it been reviewed independently, or studied in its use by yourself or others?



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