Design-based research principles for student orientation to online study: Capturing the lessons learnt

  • Helen Wozniak Flinders University
  • Jenny Pizzica University of Technology, Sydney
  • Mary Jane Mahony The University of Sydney


Few institutions have reported research on students' use of orientation programs designed for mature students returning to study in contemporary learning environments now regularly amalgamating distance and online strategies. We report within a design-based research framework the student experience ofGetLearning, the third stage of an innovative online orientation program. Integral to the design is active student engagement with activities to extend their skills whilst still supported in a risk free environment. Analysis included observations of the patterns of student activity, students' responses in evaluation instruments, our reflections, and identification of the limitations to deployment of such orientation programs. We also provide a set of design principles to guide further development work and research.


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Author Biographies

Helen Wozniak, Flinders University
Senior Lecturer, eLearning Coordinator, Northern Territory Medical Program, FlindersNT, Flinders University
Jenny Pizzica, University of Technology, Sydney
Lecturer, Institute for Interactive Media and Learning
University of Technology
Mary Jane Mahony, The University of Sydney
Honorary Senior Lecturer, CoCo, Faculty of Education and Social Work, University of Sydney