ArticlePDF Available

Re-orientating instructional development practice in higher education: A case of Sultan Qaboos University

  • Sultan Qaboos University (Adjunct)
Akinyemi, A. and Al Musawi, A.S .
Centre for Educational Technology
Sultan Qaboos University, Oman
Instructional development in Higher Education
Instructional Development Practice at SQU
New State of the art Facilities at SQU
Re-orientating and Re-aligning Teaching and
Issues and Prospects
Instructional development: the
process of assembling learning
materials necessary for teaching in
the classroom.
A traditional age-long description,
no longer be tenable in the modern
practice of teaching and learning.
The art and science of teaching have
changed in several folds in the light of
research and developments in human
learning and technological explosion.
The various systems approach models and
principles for the design of effective
instruction have emerged through
scientific research activities.
Function of a University
Development of personnel (training
Development of knowledge (research
Provision of necessary services
(public service function)
Bajah (1993)
Functions of a University lecturer
Authority in his/her discipline
Planner and manager of time
Academic guide to students
Adviser and counselor
Researcher and Consultant
Bajah (1993)
A Working Perspective
Practitioners have adopted from modern
technology the working hypothesis that a sort
of engineering effort is effective in solving
educational practical problems by research,
design and development.
Instructional development in Higher Education
Why teachers fail?
College teaching has not been taught at all
as many lecturers (subject matter
experts) had not received professional
preparations before becoming lecturers.
Such is the practice in many Universities
and SQU is not alone in this situation.
Skinner (1972)
Why teachers fail?
Human behavior is far too complex to be left to
casual experience or even to organized
experience in the restricted environment of the
Teachers need help and in particular, they need
the kind of help offered by a scientific analysis
of behavior. (formal training or short in-service
training programs).
Why teachers fail?
Teachersheavy reliance on aversive
Aversive pattern survives in the now almost
universal system of assign and test.
The teacher does not teach, he/she simply
holds the students responsible for
Why teachers fail?
The students must read books, study texts,
perform experiments, and attend
lectures……..or will suffer aversive
examination malpractice is in the news in
many parts of the world and plagiarism
on the Internet has reached an alarming
Instructional development in Higher Education
Teachers should by now be able to distinguish
between pedagogy (the art and science of
teaching children) and andragogy (the art and
science of teaching adults).
University lecturers need training and exposures
to the principles involved in andragogy so as to
make them more effective in the classroom.
Instructional Development Practice at SQU
Sultan Qaboos University has been
concerned about the need for lecturers to
produce quality instructional materials
for a long time.
The founding of the Center for
Educational Technology and the
Instructional Development Unit are steps
in the right direction.
Instructional Development Practice at SQU
The on-going Instructional Skills
Development Workshop series of CET for
lecturers is yet another evidence of the
seriousness of the University to ensure
that the quality of materials produced by
lecturers is high.
Instructional Development Practice at SQU
IDU is planning to design and
implement a study skills course. The
course is intended to be compulsory
for all University freshmen.
Instructional Development Practice at SQU
Instructional developers of CET have
individually or cooperatively conducted
some research in areas related to teaching
and learning.
IDU conducted training workshops and
consultancies to public schoolsand HE
New state of the art Facilities at SQU
Three fully equipped digital studios have
been installed and have become
functional. These will cater for the audio,
video, multimedia, and photographic
instructional materials production.
The multimedia and Web-CT training
and retraining are on-going activities
among the SQU staff.
New state of the art Facilities at SQU
Electronic and smart classrooms are in
place in many locations on campus.
Enhancement of the dynamic and
creative artworks involved in the
illustrations in the production of
multimedia instructional packages.
Re-orientating and Re-aligning Teaching and
Training and retraining practice of
technical staff
Inviting lecturers to visit the different
Units and engage in developmental
research on the technologies.
Working with lecturers on the
technologies that will be effective and
efficient in teaching and learning.
Re-orientating and Re-aligning Teaching and
Large-scale production of digital audio
and video instructional materials in
collaboration with lecturers is currently
in progress.
The facilities are open to students from
all faculties for actualizing their projects,
thesis, and dissertation.
Issues and Prospects
Lecturersresistance to change. Three
change strategies have been propounded,
namely; power coercive, empirical
rational and normative re-educative.
The issue of the fast rate of technological
development. Equipment and devices
become obsolete at a fast rate and the
frequent training and retraining of staff.
Issues and Prospects
The heavy consultancy demand by
faculty members. If and when all the
services of CET become operational and
in high demand, along with the usual
university services, it may be difficult to
cope without employing additional staff
in all CET units.
Proposed Solutions
The possibility of cooperation in the use of
Institute an incentive policy to reinforce
The studentsassessment instrument
administered at the end of the semester may be
designed to give information to the authority on
technology infusion into teaching.
Technology infusion into teaching and learning
has become a reality in Oman and no effort is
being spared to improve the quality of higher
intra-University networking between faculties,
departments and units of SQU for effective
sharing of information and knowledge.
regional net-working of universities in the Gulf
area will accelerate and improve the quality
and quantity of e-learning materials.
a Professional Society or Association be
formed to promote the growth and
development of the new field.
academic journal can be launched to
disseminate information and knowledge
about innovations and research results as
they occur in the different parts of the
... The researchers used this list in phase three to redesign and develop the study skills online course. The crucial finding of this phase recommends solutions to some contextual issues related to absenteeism and student identity, which appear in the local and global literature review as the most common issues faced in the design and development of online courses (Akinyemi & Al Musawi, 2002;Alperin et al., 2017;Osman, 2020). ...
... Further, SQU recruits specialists to increase the quality of online courses and professional development. These findings are similar to those of Osman (2020), Akinyemi & Al Musawi (2002), Osman and Abdelraheem (2003), and Al Musawi (2007). ...
Full-text available
E-learning has become a viable mean to both Massive Open Online Courses (MOOCs), and Small Private Open Courses (SPOCs). Research has shown that the quality and effectiveness of these types of courses depend largely on the contextual factors that may impact the design and development of online courses. This study highlights a design framework for a SPOC offered at Sultan Qaboos University. It employs a design-based research methodology, which is a systematic research approach aimed to improve instructional practices through iterative analysis, design, development, and implementation to produce contextually-sensitive design principles. The sample of this study consists of a diverse group of subjects including instructional designers, subject-matter experts, as well as students. The findings illustrate the importance of contextual logistics that need to be considered in the design and development of SPOCs. The findings also highlight the importance of the DBR as a suitable research methodology for similar developmental studies.
... In addition, many teachers don't use, and sometimes resist, the use of technology. Possible explanations for such resistance are: poorly designed software, technophobia, doubt that technology improves learning outcomes, fear of redundancy where lecturer's replacement by technology, resentment of the technology as a competitor for student's attention, and complacency with old practice by senior faculty (Hannafin and Savenye, 1993;Akinyemi and Al Musawi, 2002). ...
... However, the participants' frequency of using instructional software and equipment was weak Moreover, only one impediment (Little Number of Fixed/Portable Equipment) was perceived by faculty members as important whereas (4) impediments were perceived as important by the Technical/Administrative staff. Some of these impediments are generally reviewed by the work of Akinyemi and Al Musawi (2002). ...
Full-text available
The purpose of this research was to address the current and prospective views on educational technology (ET) in order to discover the difficulties and develop its utilization in Omani higher education. The main instruments used to carry out this research were two questionnaires: the faculty members’ questionnaire, and the technical/administrative staff questionnaire. One hundred and fifty-nine participants were involved in the study. They represented all educational technologists who have been with the public and private Omani higher education institutions. The findings show a tendency for future expansion with less expensive technologies and the need for training. Some impediments of ET use were also found. Important recommendations from this study include: the need to support Omani higher education institutions with technical and human resources to increase and activate the use/number of new instructional media and equipment.
Full-text available
This study investigates the perceived barriers to adopting information and communication technologies (ICT) in Omani higher education. One hundred faculty members from four different departments at the College of Applied Sciences in Oman participated in the study. The participants took a survey, which was developed based on the Western literature. Five factors were extracted from the survey: lack of equipment, lack of institutional support, disbelief of ICT benefits, lack of confidence, and lack of time. The findings showed that the faculty members perceived moderate degrees of barriers in applying ICT to their teaching practices. Group differences based on gender, academic rank, and academic field were generally not found except for the interaction effects on the barriers related to lack of equipment, disbelief of ICT benefits, and the overall mean. Male faculty members with less usage of ICT perceived more barriers regarding the lack of computing equipment, disbeliefs of ICT benefits, and the overall barrier than the female counterparts. It is recommended that the survey be further refined to include more subtle and culturally relevant items, larger sample sizes, and more heterogeneous samples to validate and extend the findings. Important implications of this study include a need to provide more institutional support, technical training, and personal time for faculty members to learn and upgrade their knowledge and skills in educational technologies.
ResearchGate has not been able to resolve any references for this publication.