scispace - formally typeset
Search or ask a question
Author

Sidwell Hlalele

Bio: Sidwell Hlalele is an academic researcher from University of South Africa. The author has contributed to research in topics: Virtual Laboratory & Distance education. The author has co-authored 1 publications.

Papers
More filters
Proceedings ArticleDOI
04 Aug 2020
TL;DR: The module practical electronics offered at the University of south Africa in the Open distance learning context is discussed and the effectiveness of utilizing the virtual laboratory and the virtual learning environment (VLE) in teaching the practical electronics module was analyzed.
Abstract: In this paper the module practical electronics offered at the University of south Africa in the Open distance learning context is discussed. The module was taught, and experiments were performed using a virtual laboratory called NI Multisim circuit simulation software. The virtual laboratory together with other student teaching aids such as power point presentations and tutorial letters were hosted on a virtual learning environment (VLE) called Sakai. The effectiveness of utilizing the virtual laboratory and the virtual learning environment (VLE) in teaching the practical electronics module was analyzed. The effectiveness of using these tools to teach the module was evaluated at the end of the year by referring to the student pass rate in the module. The pass rate of the students in the module whilst using the virtual laboratory to conduct experiments was compared to pass rates in the module from previous years when experiments were conducted by using physical laboratories. The student pass rate in the module when using the virtual laboratory decreased slightly as compared to previous years when physical experiments were done. The slight reduction in pass rate is attributed to student confidence in using the virtual laboratory.

4 citations

Proceedings ArticleDOI
04 Aug 2022
TL;DR: In this paper , the impact of virtual learning environments on the practical skills of students and practical knowledge is investigated by analyzing the change in pass rates of students in a practical subject such as Electrical Engineering when taught face-to-face as compared to when taught through a VLE such as Sakai online.
Abstract: Open distance learning (ODL) education has been developing rapidly in South Africa. The main reason behind the growth is the demand for online studies created due to the corona pandemic. The ODL system involves study that is not limited by geographical boundaries and extends to many knowledge areas electronically. In practice the study tends to extend to knowledge areas beyond those offered by the standard contact or traditional universities. At the University of South Africa (UNISA), the adoption of the ODL framework to theoretical subjects has been successful by making use of the Sakai virtual learning environment (VLE). The practical subjects or practical knowledge areas on the other hand have previously been taught face-to-face. Therefore, the practical modules have not been effectively taught online particularly in the electrical engineering curriculum. This issue can contribute to graduates who are unskilled in the practical component of a knowledge area, which can lead to unemployment. Virtual learning environments (VLE's) play a vital role when it comes to teaching and learning online. In this paper, the impact of VLE’s on the practical skills of students and practical knowledge is investigated. This is done by analyzing the change in pass rates of students in a practical subject such as Electrical Engineering when taught face-to-face as compared to when taught through a VLE such as Sakai online. Two groups termed as emerging centered learner (ECL) and a developed centered learner (DCL) are investigated. The method evaluates students who study electrical engineering practical module part-time. In this paper the Sakai platform was used as a VLE to teach and then evaluate students in the electrical engineering practical module. The practical guide with the full set of experiments was uploaded on Sakai under additional resources. The students were given the necessary guidelines and tasks via Sakai online, examined and then the pass rates achieved were analyzed at the end of the program and compared to the pass rates achieved using previous face-to-face teaching method used for the same practical’s. It was determined that a VLE can be used to improve the pass rates of a practical module such as electrical engineering taught online in ODL.

Cited by
More filters
Proceedings ArticleDOI
04 Aug 2022
TL;DR: In this paper , the impact of virtual learning environments on the practical skills of students and practical knowledge is investigated by analyzing the change in pass rates of students in a practical subject such as Electrical Engineering when taught face-to-face as compared to when taught through a VLE such as Sakai online.
Abstract: Open distance learning (ODL) education has been developing rapidly in South Africa. The main reason behind the growth is the demand for online studies created due to the corona pandemic. The ODL system involves study that is not limited by geographical boundaries and extends to many knowledge areas electronically. In practice the study tends to extend to knowledge areas beyond those offered by the standard contact or traditional universities. At the University of South Africa (UNISA), the adoption of the ODL framework to theoretical subjects has been successful by making use of the Sakai virtual learning environment (VLE). The practical subjects or practical knowledge areas on the other hand have previously been taught face-to-face. Therefore, the practical modules have not been effectively taught online particularly in the electrical engineering curriculum. This issue can contribute to graduates who are unskilled in the practical component of a knowledge area, which can lead to unemployment. Virtual learning environments (VLE's) play a vital role when it comes to teaching and learning online. In this paper, the impact of VLE’s on the practical skills of students and practical knowledge is investigated. This is done by analyzing the change in pass rates of students in a practical subject such as Electrical Engineering when taught face-to-face as compared to when taught through a VLE such as Sakai online. Two groups termed as emerging centered learner (ECL) and a developed centered learner (DCL) are investigated. The method evaluates students who study electrical engineering practical module part-time. In this paper the Sakai platform was used as a VLE to teach and then evaluate students in the electrical engineering practical module. The practical guide with the full set of experiments was uploaded on Sakai under additional resources. The students were given the necessary guidelines and tasks via Sakai online, examined and then the pass rates achieved were analyzed at the end of the program and compared to the pass rates achieved using previous face-to-face teaching method used for the same practical’s. It was determined that a VLE can be used to improve the pass rates of a practical module such as electrical engineering taught online in ODL.
Journal ArticleDOI
TL;DR: In this article , students' acceptance towards Open Distance Learning (ODL) virtual Electrotechnology laboratory (EEE111) course in UiTM Pasir Gudang based on exit-entrance survey conducted at the beginning and end of the course with the students' performance as the control group.
Abstract: 516 Abstract Since the year 2020, Open Distance Learning (ODL) has made great impact on higher education institutions worldwide. ODL provides flexibility in education where students are able to attend online classes and watch recorded videos of lectures for revision or missed class. Though many institutions offer online-based course, it is still considered limited particularly in Electrical Engineering courses which requires hands-on in-lab practices. This is a challenge for higher institutions to adjust course content to be adaptable with ODL at the same time meet the course objectives. This paper studies students’ acceptance towards ODL virtual Electrotechnology laboratory (EEE111) course in UiTM Pasir Gudang based on Exit-Entrance Survey conducted at the beginning and end of the course with the students’ performance as the control group. The survey was conducted online with specific questions on students’ perceptions of the course. A total of 165 respondents were recorded for EE111 and EE112 programs. The effectiveness of this virtual laboratory was evaluated at the end of the semester by referring to the students’ performance in this course. Students have been assessed on practical skills, report writing, peer and lecturer review as well as on sustainability element in their mini project. The practical skills that contribute 90% from overall marks have been measured in practical test, laboratory work and mini project. Based on this study, it shows positive acceptance from the students towards ODL EEE111 course with 69.4% and 67.8% overall practical skills achieved for EE112 and EE111 programs respectively.
Proceedings ArticleDOI
04 Aug 2022
TL;DR: In this paper , the impact of virtual learning environments on the practical skills of students and practical knowledge is investigated by analyzing the change in pass rates of students in a practical subject such as Electrical Engineering when taught face-to-face as compared to when taught through a VLE such as Sakai online.
Abstract: Open distance learning (ODL) education has been developing rapidly in South Africa. The main reason behind the growth is the demand for online studies created due to the corona pandemic. The ODL system involves study that is not limited by geographical boundaries and extends to many knowledge areas electronically. In practice the study tends to extend to knowledge areas beyond those offered by the standard contact or traditional universities. At the University of South Africa (UNISA), the adoption of the ODL framework to theoretical subjects has been successful by making use of the Sakai virtual learning environment (VLE). The practical subjects or practical knowledge areas on the other hand have previously been taught face-to-face. Therefore, the practical modules have not been effectively taught online particularly in the electrical engineering curriculum. This issue can contribute to graduates who are unskilled in the practical component of a knowledge area, which can lead to unemployment. Virtual learning environments (VLE's) play a vital role when it comes to teaching and learning online. In this paper, the impact of VLE’s on the practical skills of students and practical knowledge is investigated. This is done by analyzing the change in pass rates of students in a practical subject such as Electrical Engineering when taught face-to-face as compared to when taught through a VLE such as Sakai online. Two groups termed as emerging centered learner (ECL) and a developed centered learner (DCL) are investigated. The method evaluates students who study electrical engineering practical module part-time. In this paper the Sakai platform was used as a VLE to teach and then evaluate students in the electrical engineering practical module. The practical guide with the full set of experiments was uploaded on Sakai under additional resources. The students were given the necessary guidelines and tasks via Sakai online, examined and then the pass rates achieved were analyzed at the end of the program and compared to the pass rates achieved using previous face-to-face teaching method used for the same practical’s. It was determined that a VLE can be used to improve the pass rates of a practical module such as electrical engineering taught online in ODL.
Peer Review
TL;DR: In this paper , the authors present a survey study that explores the implementation of virtual laboratories in STEM courses at the National Open and Distance Learning (NOUN) from the perspective of students.
Abstract: Virtual Laboratory (VL) has revolutionized STEM programs in higher education, and there is an increasing demand for VL education to replace or to focus on an integrative technique in the resolution of real-life issues with the utilization of technology. The high and growing demand for VL education is to replace or complement remote, feasible, and equitable hands-on practical learning, and this will support ubiquitous learning from any place at any time in a flexible environment. A VL allows access via an internet connection and offers learners the required infrastructure to complete laboratory tasks without attending physical laboratory facilities from anywhere and anytime. NOUN is an open and distance learning (ODL) institution with 110 study centres. It is very difficult to duplicate physical laboratories in all the centres for STEM students. Currently, NOUN conducts physical education, or hands-on practical, for students in only thirteen centres, and students from other centres are expected to join the nearest study centre for the exercise, but previous exercises showed that the attendance had been very low due to obvious constraints. However, there is little information on how virtual laboratories are being developed and used, and more research on how virtual laboratories can be effectively used to address equity and access issues in STEM education is needed. This research paper presents a survey study that aims to explore the implementation of virtual laboratories in STEM courses at the NOUN from the perspective of students. This study applied an online survey design by using a Google form to collect data from STEM NOUN students (undergraduate and postgraduate). The study surveyed 4570 students enrolled in STEM courses, and data were collected through an online questionnaire. The questionnaires were distributed using the students’ WhatsApp numbers and consisted of five (5) sections of open- and closed-ended questionnaires. Statistical Packages for Social Sciences (SPSS) was coded in spread sheets to analyse responses from independent variables among the demographic data collected. The overall result showed that 49% opted for physical laboratories, 21% selected VL, 12% picked collaboration with other universities, 08% adopted hybrid, and 09% chose no idea. NOUN practices remote learning and already has an existing Learning Management System (LMS) website, which allows learners to access it by utilizing their internet connections and a web browser, from anywhere and anytime. This means that the integration of VL, when developed, can easily be plugged into the NOUN's existing LMS. VL are known to keep learners’ interest up, have the ability to generate a lot of data for learning analytics, and are cost effective. The introduction of a VL in NOUN will drastically reduce the rate of attrition among NOUN STEM-based learners. Generally, developed VL for STEM can be shared with STEM courses in other Nigerian higher education institutions since both the conventional and non-conventional modes of learning in Nigeria have the same curriculum.