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Using handhelds in a Jigsaw cooperative learning environment
C.-Y. Laià & C.-C. Wuw
ÃDepartment of Information and Computer Education, National Taiwan Normal University, Taipei, and National Taichung Nursing College,

Taichung, Taiwan wDepartment of Information and Computed Education, National Taiwan Normal University, Taipei, Taiwan

Abstract

This paper reports our implementation of a handheld wireless environment to support Jigsaw cooperative learning activities in a college setting. A quasi-experimental research design was conducted to investigate the effects of using handhelds, as well as issues associated with the use of handheld technology. Two intact classes of fourth-year students from a five-year junior nursing college participated in the experiment. Our findings showed that handheld tools enhanced both students’ attitudes and performance in learning, and promoted better interactions among students and instructors. We also found that the handheld technology was not sophisticated enough to support cooperative learning goals without full support from a technology specialist. collaboration, empirical, handhelds, ICT use, nursing, post-secondary.

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Introduction

With recent advances in wireless communication technology and mobile devices, the application of handheld technology in education is expected to increase. Handhelds, also known as palmtop computers, were originally designed as personal organizers or note takers, and now offers roughly the same functionalities as laptop or desktop computers. It can be synchronized with or connected to computers or networks via wireless technology. Research has shown that wireless handhelds offer new opportunities for innovative user interaction and communication both in and out of the classroom (Tatar et al. 2003). Wireless handhelds have provided a unique opportunity for...

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