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Dr Gale Parchoma

Formerly at Lancaster University

Gale Parchoma

Research overview

My research interests include e-research methods, TEL policy and leadership, networked learning design and communities, digital identity, philosophies-in-practice, threshold crossings in doctoral training, simulation-based education, and technological affordances.

PhD supervision

I am especially interested in proposals from potential doctoral students in the areas of technology enhanced learning (TEL) and networked learning (NL) adoption in higher education, digital identity, social capital in online learning environments, affordances for supporting collaborative online learning, and distributed cognition.

I can support qualitative doctoral thesis proposals that include grounded theory, case studies, phenomenology, phenomenography, narrative inquiry, and actor-network theory.

Current Teaching

I am a lecturer in e-Research and Technology Enhanced Learning (TEL) doctoral programme. My TEL teaching areas include professional practice and networked learning communities. I am a also lecturer in the undergraduate EDS 100 and PiNE programmes where my teaching areas include online identity and technology adoption in higher education.

I am a practitioner and a researcher in technology enhanced learning, and have been active in this field since the 1990s. I have designed e-learning environments for a range of academic disciplines and researched the effectiveness of those environments. In 2004, I received a national award for demonstrating advancement of e-learning in Canada. In December 2009, I was an invited speaker at Online Educa Berlin: 15th International Conference on Technology Supported Learning & Training.

Career Details

From 2005 to 2007, I was a lecturer in the Department of Educational Administration at the University of Saskatchewan. Prior to that, I tutored an online writing course for employees of the United Nations' High Commissioner for Refugees.

Research Interests

For current research projects, see the projects tab on this website.

Research Interests:

My program of research has always been and remains directly linked to encountering new and complex problems in professional practices and using those problems as opportunities to frame new ways of seeing social practices approaches to research to theorize and problematize higher education. My move from Canada to the UK to join the Centre for Studies in Advanced Learning Technologies (CSALT), recently (2011) re-branded as the Centre for Technology Enhanced Learning introduced me to Lancaster School networked learning theories and practices. With a view to extending my theoretical framework to include varied applications of communities of practice, networked learning, identity construction, social constructionism, and actor network theory, I have undertaken a program of research that examines the historical development of the Lancaster School and compares Lancaster School perspectives to underpinning principles and practices of distributed adult learning with comparative international perspectives. Some of the resultant projects and publications have been based in higher and further education, while others have been based in the public health sector. While the topics, methodologies, and settings vary, I maintain an interest in collaborative research in international and inter-/trans-disciplinary research into professional practices.

Watch a video - Gale Parchoma 'On Affordances'

Completed research projects:

Use of Technologies for Educational Purposes at an NHS Trust - A CSALT Project - (with Maria Zenios & Armineh Shahoumian) 2009-2010

This Trust-funded project examined the uses of technologies for educational purposes, opportunities for expansion of use, and barriers to use. Cultural contexts within an NHS Trust were found to influence variations inlevels of technology adoption across Trust organizational units.

Examining the Development of Learning Communities in e-Learning Environments in Higher Education, 2008-2009.

This REF-funded seminar series brings together educational researchers (who design, develop, and study e-learning environments), computing scientists (who research and develop e-learning tools), and linguists (who analyze ICT-mediated social and educational discourses), into an interdisciplinary inquiry into supporting the development of communities of learners in e-learning environments. This programme provides an opportunity for researchers whose sets of expertise have previously been focused on discipline-specific research programmes to collaboratively explore shared research interests.

Provost's Research Fund - The effects of incorporating a wax carving program into an operative dentistry educational programme, 2006 - Continuing.

This project was undertaken in collaboration with Dr. Alan Kilistoff, College of Dentistry, University of Saskatchewan. The purpose of this study is to compare traditional and emergent teaching methodologies.

Animal Health League of Canada - Grant #6: Research and Development award for Reducing the Use of Live Animals in Veterinary Teaching, 2006 - 2007.

This project was undertaken in collaboration with Dr. Jonathan Naylor, Ross Veterinary College, West Indies, and Dr. Katharina Lohmann, Western College of Veterinary Medicine, University of Saskatchewan. The purpose of this study was to identify invasive laboratory exercises, which traditionally have required the use of live animals in teaching demonstrations, and to design and produce virtual laboratories to replace these demonstrations. An evaluation of the educational effectiveness of the virtual laboratories is currently underway.

Province of Saskatchewan: Technology Enhanced Learning Research Grant, e-Portfolio Research Study, 2006 - 2007.

This project was undertaken in collaboration with a group of 12 researchers from the Departments of Computer Science, Dentistry, Drama, Education, and Extension, as well a members of the Divisions of Media and Technology and Information Technology Services, University of Saskatchewan. The purpose of this study was to (1) conduct a needs analysis for the use of e-portfolios across the disciplines of Computer Science, Dentistry, Drama, and Education; (2) identify to benefits to students, instructors, and the institution; (3) identify challenges for students, instructors, and the institution; and (4) explore underpinning pedagogical, curricular, assessment, and technological issues that may influence the viability and sustainability of an e-portfolio implementation.

Association of Media and Technology in Education in Canada (AMTEC) Trust - Research Award for Measuring the Effectiveness of Accommodating Learning Styles for 3rd Year Small Animal Clinical Science Students in Veterinary Medicine, 2005 -2006.

This project was undertaken in collaboration with Dr. Sue Taylor and Dr. Cheryl Waldner, Western College of Veterinary Medicine, and Sharon Porterfield, University of Saskatchewan. The purpose of the study was to explore whether matching the design of learning materials with individual learning styles influenced learner achievement.

Province of Saskatchewan: Technology Enhanced Learning Research Grant, for Measuring Educational Effectiveness of a Self-Learning Module for Passing a Nasogastric Tube in the Horse, 2003 - 2005.

This project was undertaken in collaboration with Dr. Jonathan Naylor, and Dr. Sameeh Abutarbush, Western College of Veterinary Medicine, and Dr. Marcel D'Eon, College of Medicine, University of Saskatchewan. The purpose of this study was to compare the relative effectiveness of traditional demonstrations and computer-assisted learning.

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