The Turkish Online Journal of Distance Education
Pre-Service Science Teachers’ Perceptions About Effective Design Of Blended University Chemistry Courses
The aim of the study is to examine how blended learning can be used more effectively for university chemistry courses, based on the perceptions of students. The sample included 179 pre-service science teachers in year one through year four who had taken a university chemistry class. Qualitative data were gathered through open-ended questions and semi-structured interviews. The data were analyzed by using descriptive statistics and thematic content analysis. The results revealed necessary design characteristics for an effective blended chemistry course from students’ point of view regarding content of online instruction, the teaching methods, interface design, use of media and other visual elements, usability, design techniques, and facilitator role. The results showed that instruction should be carefully planned and must be appropriate to student needs and characteristics, the content should not be too long or complicated, content should be prepared by experts in chemistry, include reliable and valid information, designed to promote the learning process by choosing appropriate visual elements and media, be consistent with the learning outcomes, and include evaluation questions. Blended instruction should include various updated and easily accessible technological resources and tools to facilitate learning. The results also revealed that blended learning environment is most suitable for specific topics such as organic chemistry, acids and bases, the structure of atom and matter. Finally, a blended learning component matrix was created and suggested to show the interactions between the categories based on the perceptions of the participants. The results of this study, therefore, suggest important implications for instructors when designing effective blended chemistry courses for pre-service science teachers.
KEYWORDS: Blended Learning, Learner Analysis, Instructional Design, Chemistry, Pre-Service Science Teacher Education.