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Journal of Information Systems Education

Abstract

Flexible learning environments are becoming increasingly important for the planning and delivery of information systems curricula. Despite the significance and importance of these new learning environments, little has been done to empirically assess their impact on student learning outcomes. In this paper we investigate the effectiveness of using a technology-centric flexible learning environment to teach a tertiary level introductory information systems course. The subjects for the study were students who were enrolled in two similar courses: (1) a group using traditional teaching and learning methods only, and (2) a group using a flexible learning approach incorporating extensive use of web technology. The course content, lecturer, textbook and assessment were the same for each group. The results show that the technology-centric flexible learning course provided an effective learning environment for students. However significant differences in academic performance within individual assessment items indicate that particular assessment strategies are more suited to a flexible learning context than others. Student tertiary entrance scores and computer playfulness were identified as important overall predictors of academic performance.

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