The Influence of Teaching Methods on Learners’ Perception of E-safety

Václav Šimandl, Vaclav Dobias, Michal Šerý
Journal of Information Technology Education: Innovations in Practice  •  Volume 16  •  2017  •  pp. 253-275

The traditional method of teaching e-safety by lecturing is not very effective. Despite learners often being equipped with the right knowledge, they reject the need to act accordingly. There is a need to improve the way digital e-safety is taught.

The study compares four different teaching styles, examining how each affected the way students perceive a range of e-safety keywords and consequently the way they approach this issue.

The semantic differential technique was used to carry out the research. Students completed a semantic differential questionnaire before and after lessons. A total of 405 first year undergraduates took part in the study.

The paper contributes to the debate on appropriate methods for teaching e-safety, with an aim to influence learners’ attitudes.

Experience-based learning seems to be very effective, confronting students with an e-safety situation and providing them with a negative experience. This teaching method had the biggest influence on students who were deceived by the prepared e-safety risk situation.

E-safety instruction can be enhanced by ensuring that lessons provide students with a personal experience.

The semantic differential technique can be used to measure changes in learners’ attitudes during the teaching process.

Our findings may bring improvements to the way e-safety topics are taught, which could, in turn, evoke in learners a more positive e-safety attitude and a desire to improve their e-safety behavior.

More research needs to be carried out to examine how the experiential learning method affects the attitudes of younger learners (primary, middle, and high school students).

e-safety, teaching methods, experience-based learning, lecture, expert’s talk, group learning, semantic differential
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