Smart Board-Based Assessment Outcomes of Implementing Outdoor Transdisciplinary Language Instruction for Pupils

Ping Ning, Dorothy DeWitt, Leng Hai Chin, Nordilah Alias
Journal of Information Technology Education: Research  •  Volume 21  •  2022  •  pp. 379-402

The purpose of this research was to examine the potential outcomes of applying the outdoor transdisciplinary language instruction paradigm to primary school students’ cognitive and emotional improvement with smart boards as an assessment tool.

Traditional approaches to teaching English in primary schools do not give particular consideration to outdoor transdisciplinary learning for students’ cognitive and emotional improvement, especially in terms of effective assessment. Hence, in this study, outdoor drawing was integrated with teaching English to create a transdisciplinary paradigm and smart boards were adopted in the assessment.

A pre-test post-test quasi-experimental design using an equivalent control group was employed, in which learning performance, emotions (typically positive emotions), and reported satisfaction level were compared via an English vocabulary test, the Chinese version of PANAS, and a structured self-reported satisfaction instrument. E-prime 2.0 was used to register data for the three instruments and to complete the vocabulary identification phase while smart boards were adopted as an assessment tool to evaluate students’ learning performance. The data collected were analyzed using an independent t-test and the non-parametric Mann-Whitney U test using SPSS 22.0.

Unlike traditional research, which only utilized smart boards as presentation tools, this research provided evidence for the effective use of interactive technology as assessment tools for innovative language learning in primary school settings.

Results indicated that outdoor transdisciplinary drawing developed more positive emotions and higher satisfaction among students and showed significantly higher learning performance compared with indoor transdisciplinary drawing. Moreover, smart board-based assessment scores showed that students were more effectively engaged as compared to E-prime-based assessment.

The findings suggest that instructors should try to allow students to have more opportunities to explore language activities in school-based outdoor environments, which benefits their cognitive and emotional improvement. Moreover, using smart board-based assessments should be encouraged since more authentic performance could be elicited.

This research mainly focuses on the effects of learning environments and assessment tools in transdisciplinary language instruction. Hence, researchers can employ an updated design to focus on the transdisciplinary setting to investigate more interesting outcomes.

Schools should adopt more new interactive digital technologies to improve assessment for students’ innovative learning in different contexts, which can help students develop more transversal skills, benefiting their employers and making them even more competent. More critically, government support is needed to encourage schools to use emerging technologies for educational reform in the classroom, and linkages between technology vendors and schools could be encouraged to provide subsidies and other measures to less financially able schools.

Future research could explore the differences in the interaction effects of class type and learning environments on students’ learning outcomes. In addition, longitudinal assessments to investigate the intensity of the experimental intervention could provide more interesting results on the long-term effects and suggest more sustainable use.

smart board, place-based pedagogy, transdisciplinary language instruction, learning performance, positive emotions
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