Student evaluation of a virtual experience for project management learning: An empirical study for learning improvement
Ana González-Marcos, Fernando Alba-Elías, P2ML Research Group, Spain ; Fermín Navaridas-Nalda, Department of Education, Spain ; Joaquín Ordieres-Meré, PMQ Research Group, Spain
Computers & Education Volume 102, Number 1, ISSN 0360-1315 Publisher: Elsevier Ltd
Project management education was designed traditionally according to an expository paradigm. However, it needs to be redefined to engage students in higher order thinking and to facilitate effective learning. This study proposes a student-centered approach that is aligned with situated learning theory in virtual teams and explores its impact on student satisfaction and learning outcomes. Using a quasi-experimental design, 122 undergraduate and master's degree students enrolled in project management courses at two universities in separate locations. They were separated randomly into two groups, an experimental group in which students used the proposed student-centered approach and a control group in which students followed a more traditional course design. Data analysis indicated a higher level of satisfaction and performance with the proposed methodology. These results suggest that the presented methodology, which was based on project-based learning in an authentic context that offers opportunities for students to experience virtual teamwork, was more effective than traditional teaching approaches. Furthermore, there were some positive and significant correlations between students' satisfaction and their final marks. In this matter, the most relevant aspects to facilitate students' academic performance were (1) positive expectations of future professional development, (2) clear learning objectives that consistently relate to the content of the course, (3) positive feelings induced by teachers' support in resolving doubts, and (4) academic self-perception. The findings of this study suggest that motivational and affective states influence student learning in higher education. This is consistent with current learning theories.
González-Marcos, A., Alba-Elías, F., Navaridas-Nalda, F. & Ordieres-Meré, J. (2016). Student evaluation of a virtual experience for project management learning: An empirical study for learning improvement. Computers & Education, 102(1), 172-187. Elsevier Ltd.