Projects in Information System Design and Fostering Learning in Israeli High Schools: A Pilot Study

Nayif Awad, Moshe Barak

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

This paper reports about a study for creating a
learner-centered environment in the context of teaching
information system design (ISD) in high school. The
participants were 40 students from two schools who prepared
individual graduating projects, for example, an information
system for a small business or a medical clinic. Data were
collected through observations in the class, interviews with
students, analysis of their products and portfolios, and
feedback questionnaires.
The study revealed that giving the student the opportunity
to choose projects that were meaningful to them personally
or related to their family business fostered their motivation
on the task. The majority of students greatly improved their
programming skills related to ISD, but many of them only
partially completed all the design phases, namely, inquiring
into the customers’ needs, and planning (for example,
drawing data flow diagrams). Two factors influenced this
situation. Firstly, the fact that the students had some basic
knowledge and experience in programming before they
approached the graduating project, but knew very little
about the ISD process. Secondly, while the students worked
on programming in an interactive advanced technological
environment, they performed the system design manually,
for example, drawing design diagrams using a word
processor.
To foster a constructivist-learning environment in
information system development, we suggest teaching
concepts of information system design at early stages in high
school. We recommend starting to engage students in small,
open-ended design tasks and gradually increasing the scope
and complexity of these assignments.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)85-95
JournalInternational Journal of Innovation and Research in Educational Sciences
Volume2
Issue number2
StatePublished - 2015

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