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Using Information Technology To Facilitate Student Learning

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2004 Annual Conference


Salt Lake City, Utah

Publication Date

June 20, 2004

Start Date

June 20, 2004

End Date

June 23, 2004



Conference Session

Multimedia Engineering Education: Distance & Service Learning, Web-based Projects

Page Count


Page Numbers

9.1376.1 - 9.1376.9



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Paper Authors

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Azzedine Lansari

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Akram Al-Rawi McKendree University

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Faouzi Bouslama Université Laval

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NOTE: The first page of text has been automatically extracted and included below in lieu of an abstract

Session 3260

Using Technology to Facilitate Student Learning in Information Systems Azzedine Lansari, Akram Al-Rawi, and Faouzi Bouslama College of Information Systems, Zayed University P. O. Box 4783, Abu Dhabi, UAE


The use of technology in education has become critical in today’s academic institutions. Colleges and universities worldwide have seen a dramatic increase in the use of technology in the classroom. Zayed University, an academic institution in the United Arab Emirates, has recently built an environment where learning is the main focus. English is used as the language of instruction, however as it is not the students’ native language they sometimes have difficulties understanding the course content. Furthermore, students are often too shy to ask questions during class time making it difficult for the instructor to monitor comprehension. To address these issues, instructors in the College of Information Systems are using technology as a basis to create an environment that encourages and facilitates student learning. This environment includes a wired laptop-based campus, an IS curriculum that is driven by learning outcomes, electronic portfolios, and the building of learning communities. Technology facilitates student learning in many ways. As an alternative to face-to face communication, students can use a variety of tools such as electronic mail, Blackboard, Internet and the Intranet, and shared network drives for communication and information access and exchange. Moreover, students are required to develop an electronic portfolio, which includes their most important learning experiences. Using technology, faculty can access and assess student portfolios and provide feedback and guidance online. In addition, the wired campus allows students to create learning communities where ideas, information and knowledge are shared. Faculty can join these communities to integrate multiple learning perspectives as well as provide guidance and learning structures where reflection and critical thinking are encouraged. This new learning environment has resulted in a less inhibited student body where technology is used extensively to interact with other students, faculty members as well as the outside community to seek and create knowledge and ultimately become independent lifelong learners.

1. Introduction

Universities in the USA and worldwide are taking a critical look at their educational systems. A recent US national panel report calls for a dramatic reorganization of undergraduate education to ensure that all college aspirants receive not just access to college, but an education of lasting value. The report also recommends colleges to help students become “intentional” life long learners, and to create new assessments that require students to apply their learning to the real world1. In North America, accreditation institutions (such as North Central Association) are asking academic institutions to present a method to assess student-learning outcomes in the general education courses2. The traditional grade driven method has been under scrutiny for a

Proceedings of the 2004 American Society for Engineering Education Annual Conference & Exposition Copyright © 2004, American Society for Engineering Education

Lansari, A., & Al-Rawi, A., & Bouslama, F. (2004, June), Using Information Technology To Facilitate Student Learning Paper presented at 2004 Annual Conference, Salt Lake City, Utah. 10.18260/1-2--13999

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