Bailey, Wayne (2017) Web conferencing and blended learning: Using webinars as a bridge between formative and summative assessment on part-time degree programmes. In: INTED 2017 Proceedings. IATED, pp. 5376-5384. ISBN 978-84-617-8491-2

This paper explores the use of the web-conferencing tool Adobe Connect (AC) and analyses how it can be used to enhance the pedagogical experience of part-time students on blended learning provision. Specifically, this paper explores how AC can be used to bridge the gap between formative and summative assessment. A case study approach is adopted; with findings being drawn from a set of semi-structured interviews with 10 students. The case study is guided by Garrison and Vaughan’s (2008) community of inquiry (COI) framework. This research suggests that utilising a synchronous communication tool, such as AC, has a positive impact on student engagement and learning. It proposes that, as a web conferencing platform, it helps to bring people together who are separated by distance (Wang and Hsu, 2008), and that it allows students to interact with one another, to exchange ideas, offer feedback and discuss issues with fellow students and tutors (Wang and Hsu, 2008; Hudson, Knight and Collins, 2012). The synchronous environment that was facilitated allowed students feelings of immediate contact, feedback and clarification (Ng, 2007) and offered them opportunities for social interaction (McBrien, Jones and Cheng; 2009), something that they suggested was lacking.

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