The competencies required for effective performance in a university e-learning environment

Mitchell Parkes, Christine Reading, Sarah Stein

Abstract


The aim of this study was to identify and rate the importance of the competencies required by students for effective performance in a university e-learning environment mediated by a learning management system. Two expert panels identified 58 e-learning competencies considered to be essential for e-learning. Of these competencies, 22 were related to the use of technology. The remaining 36 competencies encapsulated a range of practices considered to be essential for learning within a social constructivist framework. Six of the competencies identified were either new or substantially different from what had been previously identified in the literature. A survey of e-learning stakeholders rating the importance of the e-learning competencies indicated that the competencies were not of equal importance. Critically, a number of key competencies from a social constructivist perspective that dealt with interacting and working with others were rated as being unimportant. This suggests that there is a disconnect between what the literature says about the importance of social constructivism to e-learning environments in theory and what e-learning stakeholders perceive its importance to be in practice.


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