This article presents generalized model of collaborative actions, during which participants create, modify, and estimate digital objects. Such activities can be observed in numerous network communities. A prominent example is the repository of lesson scenarios of Moscow Electronic School (MES). The combination of methods of agent-based modeling and network analysis is used in the work. Using NetLogo environment in the frames of the model, an artificial community has been developed, where teachers-agents interact with scenarios-agents. Teacher-agent determines whether there are potential scenarios in his environment to be contacted with. If such scenarios are available, then the agent selects the nearest one and makes a step towards it. If the scenario has been opened by one of the teachers, then this is already an author’s scenario and the teacher-agent takes an action to reuse it. Variants of the reuse can be preset so that to correspond to the actions allowable in the environment of MES repository for learning scenarios: review, addition to bookmarks, running the scenario, downloading, using in home assignments. All these actions of teachers regarding scenarios are logged, then the log records are transformed into bipartite graph. The experiments demonstrate that while the area of participant scenarios is expanded, not only the general number of links among participants increases but also large networks of participants are subdivided into smaller and densely interconnected groups. One of the control trends of participant activities is in the use of multiagent-based modeling as a tool of collective reflection of teachers cooperating on the basis of MES.
Recently the World faced force push to distant learning caused by COVID-19 disease. Statistical numbers show a notable increasing number of users of corporate educational solutions utilizing cloud architecture. However, non-cloud-based learning tools do not meet this growth. In this work the authors consider the causes of that contradictory behaviour and present an explanation based on differences between two types of these educational systems. Also, the authors formulate an interpretation giving a list of extracted technologies or product features that allow corporate solutions to quickly gain popularity among educational society. In addition, clear examples of their connection to learning methods that can improve teaching, learning, and the last, but not the least a user’s experience are provided. And finally, the authors highlight a sig- nificant role of integration and interoperability standards supporting easy com- ponents replacement and scaling.
Although flipped instruction is becoming increasingly common, there is still discussion and debate regarding how to define it and distinguish it from other forms of instruction. This article proposes a framework with which to visualize the constituent parts of blended learning and to define what makes a course “flipped.” The definition of flipped instruction provided by this framework can be summarized as instruction that provides large amounts of information online along with face-to-face (F2F) engagement but provides little information during F2F meetings and has relatively low online interaction. This article also presents the results of an empirical study (n = 54) in which students in a flipped scientific writing course participated in an online discussion forum, and a correlation was found between posting discussion topics and scores on in-class group writing assignments. A further connection was found between scores on these group writing assignments and student performance on individual writing assignments. Based on these results, the study recommends that online discussion forums can be used to better connect the online and F2F components of a flipped course.
This paper critically looks at the ways in which ‘global sociology’ has been debated and conceived in the past decades. It provides an historical overview of various proposals and ideas and the institutional contexts within which they are put forward and criticized. Two different periods are distinguished. Until the early twenty-first century, on the one hand, criticism of the ‘ethnocentrism of the West’ was often supported by ideas and pleas for an ‘indigenization’ of sociological knowledge. A commitment to the unity of science and to its universalist aspirations remained strong, however. In the course of the twenty-first century, on the other hand, criticism of the ‘northern dominance’ in sociology has become much stronger. Instead of a ‘multicultural’ understanding of global sociology, a ‘critical’ sociology that contributes to ‘global justice’ is now often advocated. Based on this historical overview, it is suggested that global sociology might contribute to more self-reflexivity within the discipline. It helps us to see how different contexts reverberate into the ways in which sociology itself is imagined in this world and provides an analysis of the debates for a better understanding of the challenges which sociology currently faces
Researchers see self-regulated learning (SRL) as a fundamental skill for succeeding in massive open online courses (MOOCs). However, there is no sufficient evidence of adequate functioning of SRL dimensions such as environment structuring, goal setting, time management, help-seeking, task strategies, and self-evaluation in the MOOC environment. This study fills the gap in understanding the structure of SRL skills utilising the Online Self-Regulated Learning Questionnaire (OSLQ). The construct-related validity of the OSLQ is evaluated based on self-reported survey responses of 913 Russian MOOC learners with confirmatory factor analysis and criterion-related validity is checked with independent samples t-tests comparison. The results show that the original six-factor hierarchical model does not fit the data adequately. The evidence implies that the dimension ‘help-seeking’ is not effective in the MOOC environment. Therefore, a redefined five-factor hierarchical model of the OSLQ is suggested.
This paper analyses the link between the efficiency of regional higher education systems and the rates of regional economic development between 2012 and 2015 in Russia. The efficiency scores are calculated at the institutional level using Two-stage Semi-parametric data envelopment analysis. Then, the scores are aggregated at the regional level. We formulate an economic growth model that considers the efficiency of regional higher education systems as one of the explanatory variables. As an econometric method, we employ a robust GMM estimator. The findings highlight a positive, and statistically significant effect of higher education institutions efficiency on the regional economic growth. We also found negative spillover effects.
Purpose. This exploratory study aims, firstly, to analyse and categorise judgments on the ethical behaviour and actual behaviour of university educators. Secondly, the study addresses the impact of demographic data, such as gender, age, and role on these issues.
Approach. We utilised online survey data from academic employees of four leading universities in Russia, who are involved in teaching activities. In this study, we used correlation, regression and factor analyses.
Findings. Our results demonstrate that teaching while too distressed to be effective, is a common experience among university educators. By contrast, the rarest categories include teaching under the influence of drugs or alcohol. In addition, there is a high congruence between beliefs and respective behaviours. Females are typically more ethical in both judgements and actual behaviour. Factor analysis of behaviours yielded 16 interpretable factors.
Originality. This study contributed to the very limited research on the ethical aspects of higher education in Russia.
Practical implications. Firstly, the salary of the university educators should be adequate and competitive and match with their workload. Secondly, the work of the educators should be given recognition that may become their stimuli for improvement in university teaching. Thirdly, universities should develop ethics centres, which help faculty members and students to take the right decisions in situations involving questionable behaviour in the classroom. Lastly, the development of ethical codes, for faculty members and students, may become their guidance in situations with ethical dilemmas.
The study is devoted to a comparison of three approaches to handling missing data of categorical variables: complete case analysis, multiple imputation (based on random forest), and the missing-indicator method. Focusing on OLS regression, we describe how the choice of the approach depends on the missingness mechanism, its proportion, and model specification. The results of a simulated statistical experiment show that each approach may lead to either almost unbiased or dramatically biased estimates. The choice of the appropriate approach should be primarily based on the missingness mechanism: one should choose CCA under MCAR, MI under MAR, and, again, CCA under MNAR. Although MIM produces almost unbiased estimates under MCAR and MNAR as well, it leads to inefficient regression coefficients—ones with too big standard errors and, consequently, incorrect p-values.
Transition to distance learning during the COVID‑19 lockdown in spring 2020 was a challenge to the education system in general and higher education in particular. Applied Sciences were unanimously recognized as the most affected due to their focuson practical skills, being closely tied to the institutional infrastructure, and a moderate curriculum digitalization. This article describes student experiences during the spring semester of academic year 2019/20, using data obtained from 30 interviews with students in Engineering, Technology & Applied Sciences, Health & Medical Sciences, and Arts & Culture degrees. Delivery of lectures and practical classes, placements, dissertations, and faculty–student interactions are analyzed. Findings are consistent with the widely discussed perception of education during the pandemic not as distance learning but rather as emergency remote teaching that requires supportive measures to compensate for time loss in learning as well as solutions to technical and methodological issues.
The demand for large-scale assessments in higher education, especially at an international scale, is growing. A major challenge of conducting these assessments, however, is that they require understanding and balancing the interests of multiple stakeholders (government officials, university administrators, and students) and also overcoming potential unwillingness of these stakeholders to participate. In this paper, we take the experience of the Study of Undergraduate Performance (SUPER) in conducting a large-scale international assessment as a case study. We discuss ways in which we mitigated perceived risks, built trust, and provided incentives to ensure the successful engagement of stakeholders during the study’s implementation.
This paper identifies the master’s students’ attitudes to the effects of Bologna reform in Russia. The core idea is that the main challenges in Bologna Process implementation in Russia are connect deeply with the quality of human capital. Conclusions were based on the results of a large-scale survey, conducted in 2019, in 19 Russian universities. The authors examined the shortcomings of higher education reform at the micro-level. Data demonstrates that the reform provided a real opportunity for students to change their education track; work experience is more important for employers than master’s degree; master’s students enter the labour market as early as possible; master’s students are not eligible for entrepreneurship and collaborative group work skills; most master’s students believe that hard skills are crucial for any future job. The transition to a two-cycle system is assessed rather negatively, both by students and teachers. This paper also opens a discussion for more use for the Bologna reform implementation sustainable development framework.
Today, internet provides opportunities for solidarization and collective action to initiative groups of social movements, including those of high degree of radicalism. For radical groups, language continues to be a crucial instrument through which social movements influence public attitudes. In this article, we analyze discursive strategies that the radical social movement (RSM) of Russian lesbian feminism uses to shape its image among the out-group and in-group publics. To identify the strategies of RSM self-representation, we employ semi-structured interviewing, qualitative content analysis, discourse analysis, and semantic network visualization. We find that, in a hostile anti-LGBT legal and discursive environment, self-representation of lesbian feminists is mostly linked to issues of aggression, violence, and systemic social, political, and legal constraints, unlike in the United States; it is also based on separation from the wider society and dehumanization of bearers of patriarchal views.
Universities contribute to economic growth and national competitiveness by equipping students with higher-order thinking and academic skills. Despite large investments in university science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) education, little is known about how the skills of STEM undergraduates compare across countries and by institutional selectivity. Here, we provide direct evidence on these issues by collecting and analysing longitudinal data on tens of thousands of computer science and electrical engineering students in China, India, Russia and the United States. We find stark differences in skill levels and gains among countries and by institutional selectivity. Compared with the United States, students in China, India and Russia do not gain critical thinking skills over four years. Furthermore, while students in India and Russia gain academic skills during the first two years, students in China do not. These gaps in skill levels and gains provide insights into the global competitiveness of STEM university students across nations and institutional types.
This chapter examines the characteristics of high- and low-performing schools in disadvantaged areas of rural Russia. It first provides a historical context of the persistent spatial inequalities that differentially shape opportunities for rural youth, with a specific focus on the differences in academic outcomes and opportunities for rural and urban graduates. The last section of the chapter describes a qualitative study conducted in rural schools in two very different regions of the Russian Federation: the Tomsk Oblast region and the Republic of Sakha (Yakutia). A wide range of factors, including school characteristics, family, environment, as well as individual knowledge and experiences, shape school experiences. The chapter identifies effective and ineffective practices used by schools and educational leaders within disadvantaged rural communities but notes that, in the context of rural depopulation and economic decline, “effective” education that enables young people to take advantage of largely urban opportunities may simply hasten the decline and abandonment of rural villages.
Quite recently, considerable attention has been paid to distance learn- ing due to mass schools and universities closing because of coronavirus disease. This fact brought to light not only strengths but also weaknesses of existing edu- cational software and use cases. This paper is motivated by the questions which are rinsed by thoroughly adopted educational software and the deep gap between educational methodologies and up-to-date distributed information infrastructure capabilities. The lack of an engineering approach in the deployment of distance learning tools leads to both technological and methodological problems. We pre- sent exploratory analysis of data gathered from authority web sources. The sig- nificant ideological differences between educational software generations are discussed with special attention to non-cloud-based and cloud-based collabora- tive technologies and corresponding platforms. The authors conclude that the power of integration based on industry-wide interoperability standards is useful to solve current problems in distance education related to software.
Different parental strategies in education are bound to produce various effects: not all of these strategies are equally productive in their application. At the same time, the impact of parental involvement in general education on their children's extracurricular activities has not been thoroughly studied. This article attempts to fill this gap by analyzing the relationship between strategies of parental involvement in education and adolescents' participation in extracurricular activities. The data source for this study were parents whose children attend general education institutions (N = 3,887; Mage of children = 12.4, SD = 3.1; 55.6% female). A latent class analysis identified three categories of parental participation in education: “Intrusive”, “Supervisory”, and “Detached”. Each category showed different patterns of involvement from primary to high school, distinguished by the type of extracurricular participation encouraged by parents. In primary school, children of “Intrusive” parents attended the highest number of extracurricular activities. In secondary school, they attended fewer activities compared to the children of “Supervisory” parents. Children of “Supervisory” parents often chose to participate in activities on their own, and continued to attend the selected activity, or change activity on their own initiative. The children of “Detached” parents were less involved in extracurricular activities in primary school. In some cases, they chose their own extracurricular activities as they grew older. The study demonstrates that parental involvement is related to adolescents’ participation in extracurricular activities. Parents’ strategies should be considered instrumental as they produce a variety of different outcomes, depending upon the adolescents’ age and type of activities. The identified strategies may serve as a basis for recommendations for development of parental competencies, consultations, and family education.
Network analysis methods are actively used to research the behavior of digital repository users who utilize and create digital objects. At the same time, the research into the collective behavior of a group of participants who are members of the same school is much less common. The library of the Moscow Electronic School is a rather complicated system with multiple roles offered to users. The actors of the repository are teachers, students, parents, and publishers – anyone performing any actions with the objects. In this study, the school is seen as an actor performing actions with objects – lesson scenarios within the Moscow Electronic School repository of digital objects. Within the study, the authors compare the sociograms of schools that unite teachers and the scenarios created by the teachers and divide schools into factions based on network indicators in sociograms. The main method of presenting and analyzing data is network analysis and sociogram creation. The authors identify two types of networks: the network of single participant’s relationships and the network of relationships of teachers from a single school. The authors not only describe the data structure in the Moscow Electronic School system that records the digital trace of every individual and collective user but also create a digital map that reflects the dynamics of actions in the Moscow Electronic School system and identify the indicators that characterize the common activity of key participants. Moreover, the authors identify graph factions for schools that characterize the degree of interaction between teachers: disconnected groups, sparse graphs, crystallization centers, dense graphs.
The article discusses the opportunities and limitations of using new data sources and methods of its collection, processing and analysis, namely, digital traces and machine learning in Sociology. At first, we examine the disadvantages of traditional data sources (surveys) and then, based on relevant and recent empirical studies, we discuss how these disadvantages can be overcome using digital traces. The main drawbacks of survey data are the reactivity, a small sample size, and rare frequency of surveys. Based on these drawbacks we identify types of research questions that can only be answered with digital traces. Finally, we also explore the disadvantages of digital traces: lack of representativeness, construct validity, external and internal interfering factors, and non-stationarity. Relying on recent methodological developments the paper explains how to take into consideration these limitations and how to adjust for them wherever possible.
In recent years, the increase in general interest in methods for measuring cognitive load and subjectively perceived mental effort when solving various tasks and in the interpersonal communication was accompanied by an increase in the specific interest of social researchers in the multimodal assessment of the cognitive load of interviewers and respondents based on objective and subjective indicators, including paradata and webcam data, in order to control this load’s impact on the quality of survey data. The authors argue that the possibilities of relatively new approaches to measuring cognitive load with neurophysiological methods (such as the use of wearable devices for oculography — eye tracking and pupillometry — which do not disrupt the natural course of respondents and interviewers activity) are still underestimated, although they allow an accurate time linkage of measured parameters’ dynamics (primarily the size of the pupil) to the question format, mode and phase of survey completion, external influences localized in time, etc. As a rule, quantitative studies of surveys’ cognitive load and its possible impact on the quality of survey data focus on computer-assisted (CAPI) or paper-based (PAPI) interviewing, while the specificity of the cognitive load in the self-completed computerized (CASI) and paper (P&PSI) surveys was not studied. The article presents the results of the methodological experiment based on a modified version of the multimodal approach to the comparative assessment of the cognitive load of interviewers working with paper and computerized questionnaire. We expanded the range of methods for assessing cognitive load by using a wearable oculographic device (eye tracker) to measure the dynamics of pupil size when answering different survey questions. The results of the experiment confirmed the hypothesis about the approximate equivalence of the two modes of survey completion in terms of their cognitive load for younger respondents with a high level of functional computer literacy, and allowed an initial assessment of the technical and metrological capabilities and limitations of the use of pupil dynamics’ indicators, measured with a wearable oculographic device, to study the respondents’ cognitive load.