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Everything We Wanted to Know About Our Course, but were Afraid to Ask: Views from the Student Perspective

Everything We Wanted to Know About Our Course, but were Afraid to Ask: Views from the Student Perspective
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Author(s): Anne Venables (Victoria University, Australia), Sarojini Devi Nagappan (Sunway University College, Malaysia) and Asim Ghous (Alpha Beta Colleges, Australia)
Copyright: 2006
Pages: 4
Source title: Emerging Trends and Challenges in Information Technology Management
Source Editor(s): Mehdi Khosrow-Pour, D.B.A. (Information Resources Management Association, USA)
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-59904-019-6.ch160
ISBN13: 9781616921286
EISBN13: 9781466665361

Abstract

This paper reports on a serendipitous opportunity that befell our Bachelor of Science degree program at Victoria University, Australia, where we were able to collect ‘unsolicited’ student feedback on our course offering from both local students in Melbourne and international students studying off campus in Malaysia and Sydney, Australia. The opportunity came about as a useful by-product of a learning outcome, in a third year Computer Science subject, Intelligent Systems. In this elective subject, the assignment task was the creation of an expert system entitled “The Unofficial Course Guide to the Computer Science Degree”, in which students authored and collected student surveys to tap the ‘unofficial information’ about our course. An insight into issues of importance to students was gained by analyzing student generated surveys at these three locations. At the home campus, this ‘unsolicited’ feedback highlighted that student choices are motivated by pragmatic mechanisms about fulfilling the course requirements with a minimum of effort. Similar behaviours have also been reported amongst students in New Zealand (Ditcher & Hunter, 2000) and the United States (Wilhelm & Comegys, 2004). However at the two off campus locations, Malaysia and Sydney Australia, the motivations for these full fee paying international students are quite different.

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