Education Team/Survey questions

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Survey on Instructional strategies using “Sugar” learning platform

Consent

You are being asked to participate in a research study conducted by Walter Bender from the Media Lab at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (M.I.T.). The primary purpose of the study is to get feedback from teachers who have been using the Sugar learning platform—the software that runs on the OLPC-XO-1 laptop—to help Sugar Labs prioritise resources amongst already identified issues and to identify any further needs. It is also an opportunity to gather success stories and failure points. The Sugar Labs team would like your help to translate the survey results into actionable items.

As a secondary goal, this consent section also permits academic research institutions in the USA to more easily participate with the project and understand the collected information.

You were selected as a potential participant in this study because you have been using Sugar as part of Project Ceibal in Uruguay. You should read the information below before deciding whether or not to participate in the survey.

Your participation in this survey is voluntary. We expect that the survey will take about 15 minutes, however you have the right not to answer any question and to stop participating in the survey at any time and for any reason. You will not be compensated for participating in this survey.

The information you tell us will remain anonymous and confidential. Only aggregate results will be published.

Please contact Walter Bender (walter -AT- media.mit.edu) with any questions or concerns.

If you feel you have been treated unfairly, or you have questions regarding your rights as a research subject, you may contact the Chairman of the Committee on the Use of Humans as Experimental Subjects, M.I.T., Room E25-143b, 77 Massachusetts Ave, Cambridge, MA 02139, phone +1-617-253-6787 or by email (mede -AT- med.mit.edu).

Apart from the current survey, the survey questions and instruments are available for independent use.

Background

Sugar is the software used on the OLPC-XO-1 laptop computers deployed as part of Project Ceibal. Teachers, students, and engineers are using, testing, and improving Sugar. With your help—sharing your successes, problems, and suggestions—we can create a better learning experience for all children.

How long have you been teaching? (years, numeric input)

Do you teach in an urban, suburban, or rural school? (check one or more?)

How familiar were you using computers before your participation in Project Ceibal? (very unfamiliar 12345 very familiar)

Was you prior experience with computers on (check one or more boxes)

  • Windows
  • Apple
  • Linux

Had you ever used computers in your classroom with your students before Project Ceibal? (yes/no)

How comfortable are you using computers in your classroom? (very uncomfortable 12345 very comfortable)

Learners access to computers is important because they need to learn how to use programs such as word processors to participate in a technological world. (disagree strongly 12345 strongly agree)

As a result of Project Ceibal I now believe this (less 12345 more)

Learners access to computers is important because computers can be a tool to think with, they facilitate problem solving, open-ended discovery, and deep thinking. (strongly disagree 12345 strongly agree)

As a result of my participation in Project Ceibal I now believe this (less 12345 more)

It is important that computers provide an easy entry for first-time users. (strongly disagree 12345 strongly agree)

As a result of Project Ceibal I now believe this (less 12345 more)

It is important that computers support more complicated tasks as a users competence grows. (strongly disagree 12345 strongly agree)

As a result of Project Ceibal I now believe this (less 12345 more)

Sugar Activities

Sugar Activities are computer programs that have been created for or adopted to the Sugar environment, such as Read, Write, Browse, and Paint.

My students' three favorite Sugar Activities are?

The three most important Sugar Activities for learning are?

A Sugar Activity that needs improving is?

How many Sugar Activities do you estimate are available?

Sugar Collaboration

One feature of Sugar is that it enables students to collaborate; examples of Sugar collaboration include peer editing in Write and sharing bookmarks in Browse.

Do your students use the collaboration features in Sugar? (never 12345 at least once per day) //how will the 12345 scale be interpreted?

Do you ever use the collaboration features to work with your students? (never 12345 at least once per day)

Do you ever use the collaboration features to work with other teachers? (never 12345 at least once per day)

Is Sugar collaboration an important learning feature? (not very important 12345 very important)

Are there Activities that you wish would support collaboration?

Sugar Journal

Another feature of Sugar is that it maintains a journal (or diary) of the student's work.

Do your students use the description field in the Journal to make notes about their work? (never 12345 every time they use an Activity)

Do your students use the title field in the Journal to change the title of the entry? (never 12345 every time they use an Activity)

How often do you look at your student's Journal? (never 12345 at least once per week)

How often do your student's parents look at their child's Journal? (never 12345 at least once per week)

Sugar View Source

Sugar is free and open-source software, designed to be modified by the user.

Have you ever looked at how any of the Sugar software is programmed? (never 12345 many times)

Have your students ever looked at any of the Sugar software? (never 12345 many times)

Are there things you'd like to change about Sugar or a Sugar Activity? (yes/no)

Have you ever tried to modify an Activity or Sugar itself? (yes/no)

If yes, was the experience (check all that apply): frustrating; satisfying; an opportunity for learning; other //each on a 12345 scale?

If no, is it because (check all that apply): you don't know how to program; you don't have time to program; it is too difficult to learn; it is someone else's responsibility; you didn't know it was possible; it is good to know the opportunity is there even if I haven't exploited it; other

Have your students ever tried to modify an Activity or Sugar itself? (yes/no)

If yes, was the experience (check all that apply): frustrating; satisfying; an opportunity for learning; other //each on a 12345 scale?

Overall

How satisfied have your students been with Sugar? (very unsatisfied 12345 very satisfied)

How satisfied have you been with Sugar? (very unsatisfied 12345 very satisfied)

How satisfied have parents and the community been with Sugar? (very unsatisfied 12345 very satisfied)

The Project Ceibal has resulted in (strongly disagree 12345 strongly agree)

  1. Reduced absenteeism
  2. Greater engagement by children
  3. Empowerment of teachers
  4. Increased esteem of teachers
  5. Reduced need of discipline
  6. Less disruption by students
  7. Increase in self esteem by students
  8. Increased “connection” with the world (other cultures, languages, ideas)
  9. Increased involvement by parents
  10. School becomes the center of the community
  11. Development of a sharing culture (child ↔ child, school ↔ community, teacher ↔ parent, child ↔ family, etc.)
  12. Better results than with computers in the classroom

Follow up

Would you be willing to participate in a more detailed, follow up survey? (yes/no)

Would you be willing to participate in an on-line forum with other teachers to share ideas about Sugar? (yes/no)

Would you be willing to participate in an on-line forum with software developers to share ideas about Sugar? (yes/no)

What on-line forums do you use, if any? (chat, irc, blog, wiki, email, twitter, Facebook, ning, discussion forum) Other? (check one or more boxes)

Would you be willing to engage in a discussion with other teachers in an on-line forum? (yes/no)

If yes, which of the forums would be most suitable for such a discussion (check one or more boxes)

Do you have additional ideas about how to get more teachers involved?

After seeing the new developments in Sugar software (version 0.84) are your impressions or expectations changed?

  • Do you see more possibilities for learning?
  • Do you see more reasons to provide feedback?