An Overview of the Quality, Readability and Relevance of Distance Education Instructional Modules at Domasi College of Education (Malawi)-a Teacher - Learner’s Perspective.

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Commonwealth of Learning (COL)

PCF2 // Distance Education in Malawi. The college faces the challenge of having to produce readable and relevant instructional materials. In this survey, the quality, relevance, and readability of distance education instructional materials is evaluated by the teacher-learners themselves. // A questionnaire was administered at the end of the 2001 residential course to an average sample of 152 students out of 600 teacher-learners enrolled. The respondents were required to evaluate various sections of the modules without being subject-specific. The areas evaluated were: general presentation of information in the modules, use of icons and headings, relevance of the objectives to the content and secondary school classroom needs, relevance of overviews, self evaluations and practice activities, and helpfulness of information on tables, charts and diagrams. The students were asked to respond to statements referring to the aforementioned sections of modules as follows: strongly agree(SA), agree(A), disagree(D), and strongly disagree(SD). // Most responses from the teacher-learners strongly indicate that the modules are highly readable and relevant to their classroom needs. According to this survey 83 % of the teacher learners have indicated that the general layout of information in the modules helps them follow the instruction easily and effectively. Regarding icons and headings, 95 % of the respondents find them helpful in learning modules. A good number of the teacher leaners (78%) do not regard the icons as being too many and confusing. The evaluation of objectives shows that 85 % of the teacher- learners find the objectives matching with the information covered in the modules, and also find them relevant to their needs for classroom teaching. The teacher learners also indicate that the overviews, and self evaluations are helpful instructional tools. The survey has shown that 89% of the teacher learners find the overviews helpful in learning the materials in the modules. Most of the teacher learners (92%) find the self evaluation materials consistent with the objectives and helpful in understanding the modules. It has also been noted that 66% of the teacher learners regard tables, charts, and diagrams in the modules helpful in learning information. //