Durham University
Programme and Module Handbook

Postgraduate Programme and Module Handbook 2018-2019 (archived)

Module EDUC44230: Improving Computer Education

Department: Education

EDUC44230: Improving Computer Education

Type Open Level 4 Credits 30 Availability Not available in 2018/19 Module Cap


  • None


  • None

Excluded Combination of Modules

  • None


  • To give students an appreciation of industrial software development practices to help teachers develop better strategies for select technology to use in educational setting and to help them apply and use realistic case studies support computing education both school and higher education based; to help them critically evaluate their usefulness, identify appropriate applications and most effectively understand how these implemented using sound principles of instructional design.


  • Affordances of technology in education. Design of the tools themselves and how they can be read, understood and applied in practice
  • Methods of criticically evaluating learning technologies
  • Teacher attitudes and adoption : inclination for use of technology in practice, acceptance and impact upon established teaching paradigms.
  • The impact of student owned, and informal learning technologies upon the learning environment
  • Instructional design principles and underpinning theories of learning to create engaging learning experiences and activities using technology for students.

Learning Outcomes

Subject-specific Knowledge:
  • At the end of the module students will:
  • Have a knowledge of a number of established methods for technology evaluation
  • Understand the influencing factors on teacher selection of technology in practice
  • Understand a range of instructional design models, approaches, practices and their application
  • Be able to critically examine and identify the impact of student-led learning practices on established teaching environments.
Subject-specific Skills:
  • At the end of the module students will be able to:
  • Critically evaluate learning technologies using a developing assessment criteria
  • Design, develop using an appropriate tool and evaluate an effective learning object for use in education
  • Understand how teacher attitudes and acceptance of technology can impact the success of any technology enhanced learning innovation
Key Skills:
  • IT Skills
  • Evaluation and problem solving
  • Engaging with the professional world

Modes of Teaching, Learning and Assessment and how these contribute to the learning outcomes of the module

  • Teaching sessions will be a mixture of lectures, practical classes and small group activities. Lectures will give up-to-date knowledge of computing and technology enhanced learning and help structure students’ own study and learning towards the learning objectives.
  • Seminars will facilitate a more in-depth student engagement with themes and issues raised in the lectures. The practical classes will be supported by task based activities and workbooks. On-line materials / tutorials will also support self study activity.
  • Seminars will also be linked to field work, either conducting evaluation in learning institutions/ agencies or working with data from Durham’s VLE. The format of lectures and in particular seminar exercises will enable students to critically discuss assessment issues.
  • Labs will allow students to gain experience using a range of e-learning platforms. Labs provide supported experience and enable students to develop familiarity and skills with a range of tools for production of interactive multimedia content.

Teaching Methods and Learning Hours

Activity Number Frequency Duration Total/Hours
Lectures 5 1 hour 5
Seminars 10 2 hours 20
Practical activities and Lab 2 2.5 5
Self-guided learning and fieldwork experience 270
Total 300

Summative Assessment

Component: Assignment Component Weighting: 40%
Element Length / duration Element Weighting Resit Opportunity
Reflective account of a selected technology in practice (Essay) 2000 words 100%
Component: Assignment Component Weighting: 60%
Element Length / duration Element Weighting Resit Opportunity
Learning object (Developed and designed using an appropriate tool) 35%
Commentary on learning object design explaining design decisions and context use (Report) 2500 60%
Reflective review of their learning object and professionla practice 750 5%

Formative Assessment:

Students will receive feedback to compulsory seminar tasks. Students will receive peer feedback on initial drafts of their reflective accounts of a selected technology in practice. Students will produce an initial plan of sketch of their learning object and will receive peer, self and tutor feedback on this design.

Attendance at all activities marked with this symbol will be monitored. Students who fail to attend these activities, or to complete the summative or formative assessment specified above, will be subject to the procedures defined in the University's General Regulation V, and may be required to leave the University