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Refereed full papers (journals, book chapters, international conferences)


  • @inproceedings{McS2011,
    	vgclass =	{refpap},
    	author =	{McNamara, Robyn A. and Squire, David McG.},
    	title =	{What do they want from us? Computer Science students' expectations of sessional teaching assistants},
    	booktitle =	{Proceedings of the 3rd International Conference on
    	Education and New Learning Technologies (EDULEARN'11)},
    	address =	{Barcelona, Spain},
    	pages =	{4252--4260},
    	month =	{July~4--6},
    	year =	{2011},
    	url =	{},
    	abstract =	{At many institutions, a Computer Science student's most
    	important interactions with teaching staff occur in classes led by
    	sessional Teaching Assistants. These staff members can be the student's
    	primary contact with the academic faculty, and are often the most
    	accessible sources of formative feedback to students. As such, they are
    	a vital pedagogical resource. As front-line teaching staff with
    	frequent student contact, Teaching Assistants are generally best
    	positioned to help students over difficulties with course material and
    	advise them on study skills. To date, however, little research has been
    	done on what students expect of their Teaching Assistants and how they
    	make use of this resource. In this study, students undertaking the
    	Bachelor of Computer Science at a large university were interviewed
    	about their perceptions and experiences with sessional teaching staff,
    	and how their interactions in class impacted on their learning.
    	Although the conventional wisdom suggests that students just want to
    	get the answers in theory tutorials and high marks in practical lab
    	sessions, most of the interviewees in this study reported experiences
    	that suggest a much more sophisticated view of learning. Students were
    	much less concerned about the quantity of their marks than had been
    	expected, and much more concerned about the quality of the feedback
    	they received. In discussion-oriented theory classes, students valued
    	social and facilitation skills more highly than domain knowledge.},