The Effectiveness of Using a Web-based Learning Environment to Promote students’ discussion in the Class of Library Information System at Petra Christian University

Author : Rahardjo, Arlinah Imam ; Sundoro, David ;

Library Information System class at the Informatics Department of Petra Christian University has been integrating the use of a web-based learning environment called PCU-CAMEL (Petra Christian University-Computer Assisted Mechanical Engineering Study Program Learning Environment) since the 1st semester of 2004-2005. This integrated learning environment is designed to enrich the learning experiences of the students and to develop the students’ intrinsic motivation to learn. One of the elements of developing students’ intrinsic motivation is to provide opportunities for students to be involved in free expression of ideas through discussion among class members. A study on the data recorded in the PCU-CAMEL Discussion Forum during the 1st and 2nd 1. INTRODUCTION Petra Christian University has just developed a web-based learning environment known as PCU-CAMEL (Petra Christian University-Computer Aided Mecha-nical Engineering Study Program Learning Environ-ment). This environment has been designed to integrate the use of the web into the traditional, face-to-face setting of class activities and serves as an effort to improve the teaching and learning process. Though PCU-CAMEL was initially designed for Mechanical Engineering Study Program, it has also been imple-mented in the Library Information System class since the first semester of 2004-2005. A study on the online discussion forum of PCU-CAMEL implemented during the first and second semester of this class is discussed to find the effectiveness of this online environment to promote students’ discussion. 2. PCU-CAMEL AN OVERVIEW semester 0f 2004-2005 has been conducted to find the effectiveness of PCU-CAMEL as a media to promote the students’ discussion. The analysis of the recorded data has given evidences on the effectiveness of this web-based learning tools in developing the intensity of the discussion in terms of the number of postings, number of topics discussed; promoting intrinsic motivation; enriching class materials; encouraging shy students to speak up; developing students’ critical and creative thinking; and building mutual trust and values among the members of the class. However, there are also some issues to be addressed to allow this web-based learning environment to be used more effectively. A university-wide policy and strategy has to be carefully defined to address the issues on passive learners; different level of experiences and skills of the students on the use of Information technology; digital divide and university technology infrastructure that will allow students to have easy access in the campus as well as from outside campus.

Keyword : e-learning, library information system, student discussion

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