JOURNAL: WHAT MAKES LEARNING MEANINGFUL? (1250 WORDS)
For this part of the portfolio, you will be documenting one positive learning experience from your past. You will be asked to
consider this experience in terms of its theoretical underpinnings, and underlying assumptions about how people learn and
what motivates them. You will then reflect on whether, and how, the elements of your positive learning experience can be
implemented in a technology enhanced learning environment, with reference to your own learning environment prototype.
Specific instructions are provided for each of the five entries, which you can find in the Assessment section of Canvas. Please
work on each entry when the relevant topic is introduced during the term. Although the journal is only due at the end of the
module, along with the rest of the portfolio elements, writing entries over the course of the term means that 1) you will
actually be able to use these personal reflections to inform the design of your learning environment prototype, 2) you will
have finished this element of the portfolio well before the final deadline and 3) we can give you feedback on your entries
before you submit them if you would like.
LEARNING ENVIRONMENT PROTOTYPE
This component of the portfolio involves the design of a technology-enhanced learning environment prototype (in the
broadest sense: this could be a desktop or smartphone app, gesture-based tool, a tangible device, augmented reality
application, an embodied interaction tool, etc.). You are, however, not required to develop a VR, AR, haptic, or similar tool.
Your prototype could be as simple as an interactive storyboard built using Adobe XD (a mock-up of the actual product that
you are proposing).
You should start by deciding on a learning focussed issue of your choice. Then, using theories of learning, motivation, and
relevant research, you will develop a technology-enhanced learning environment, which addresses the issue. Your solution
should make appropriate use of relevant technologies and consider the needs of the learner, as well as the learning context.
Your solution will be developed iteratively over the course of the module. Many of the practical sessions will focus on a
specific task related to the design process. You will be given worksheets to guide you through these tasks. You should
download the relevant one for the week from Canvas and complete as much as possible before the session. You should then
bring the sheet to the practical session to get feedback. These completed worksheets will be included in your project report
as appendices (see below).
In designing your learning environment, you should focus on “innovative interactions”, i.e. ways of approaching a topic
which go beyond standard methods of teaching. This may involve the use of novel technologies (e.g. augmented reality,
virtual reality, gesture-based interactions, etc.), but you can equally design a desktop/tablet/mobile learning environment,
provided you can clearly show how the interactions afforded by your environment are novel and/or innovative in a way that
could benefit learning. Your learning environment also needs to embody your chosen theories of learning and motivation in
a clear and rigorous manner. You should be aiming for a mid-fidelity prototype, which is explained clearly in the project
report. This prototype should be included as part of your portfolio.
PROJECT REPORT (2500 WORDS)
This document should include the following sections:
1. Intro – what is your project topic? Why did you feel it was an issue that needed to be addressed in a new way?
2. Design/development/implementation process – describe your design process from start to finish (referencing relevant
practical worksheets as appropriate, included as appendices). Discuss the initial idea, how it developed over time, and
how it changed in response to feedback received. Finish by describing the final prototype (using illustrations where
3. From theory to design – which theories of learning and motivation influenced the design of your learning environment?
How were they embodied in the design (provide specific examples)? Assume that the reader has a general familiarity
with the main theories, so only provide a brief overview of those relevant to your project (but any theories mentioned
should be appropriately referenced). Why did you choose the theories that you did? Do you feel the approach was
successful, or would you do things differently?
4. Innovative interactions – in what ways does your prototype afford “innovative interactions”? Is the technology (e.g.
hardware) innovative? Is it a particular form of interaction that is different? Does it offer a novel way of learning about a
specific subject? Do you think it improves on existing/traditional techniques? If so, how? And why?
5. Appendices (excluded from the word limit) – include your completed practical worksheets here.
Approximate mark allocation for the report
Note that the following percentages are not hard and fast rules, but should give you an idea of the relative importance and
scope of each section:
Design/development/implementation process (35%)
From theory to design (25%)
Innovative interactions (20%)
References and appendix (10%)