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Constructivist pedagogy in conventional on-campus and distance learning practice: an exploratory investigation

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Learning and Instruction Volume 11, Number 2, ISSN 0959-4752 Publisher: Elsevier Ltd


This study attempts to identify characteristics of constructivism and their presence in face-to-face and open and distance learning (ODL) environments. In phase 1 of this study, a 6-week discussion through an electronic mailing list was carried out to explore the concept of constructivism, the process underlying constructivist learning and its facilitation. In the second phase, a questionnaire was developed and later analysed to ascertain the presence of constructivist principles in formal higher education instructional activities. The results of these studies were very similar and foregrounded the following seven components of constructivist teaching and learning: (1) arguments, discussions, debates, (2) conceptual conflicts and dilemmas, (3) sharing ideas with others, (4) materials and measures targeted toward solutions, (5) reflections and concept investigation, (6) meeting student needs, and (7) making meaning, real-life examples. Based on tutorials analysis (phase 1) and surveys (phase 2) in one university, the findings indicate that these components are not sufficiently present in any of the settings which were investigated, despite the positive intentions that instructional designers had in their planning phase.


Tenenbaum, G., Naidu, S., Jegede, O. & Austin, J. (2001). Constructivist pedagogy in conventional on-campus and distance learning practice: an exploratory investigation. Learning and Instruction, 11(2), 87-111. Elsevier Ltd. Retrieved April 22, 2019 from .

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