The Process Of Knowledge Elicitation Education Essay


Knowledge Elicitation (KE) refers to the "process of obtaining knowledge from a domain expert that describes how they perform a specific task or describe what general knowledge that they have about the domain" (Burge, 1998, p.1). This framework was first proposed in the context of Engineering for expert system (Burge, 1998; Cooke, 1994, 2007; Hickey & Davis, 2003; Hoffman, Shadbot, & Burton, 1995; Shadbolt & Burton, 1989), and has been applied in various contexts including business management, computer technology, and sciences (Alvarez, 2002; Burge, 2009) in order to gain the information required to solve problems or to construct the knowledge-based system. For example, the investigation by Hickey and Davis (2003) shows the use of knowledge elicitation to determine the problems and customers' needs so that the organizational department could resolve these problems.

Berge's study (1998) also mentions that the physicians were interviewed by engineers to identify what symptoms they looked for in order to build medical diagnosis software. These above two examples show the implications of knowledge elicitation in a variety of situation, bridging the gap between the knowledge building and implementation in a specific situation. In addition, the knowledge elicitation has been influenced by the cognitive psychology, trying to answer "how can knowledge be effectively elicited from the expert?" (Cooke, 2007, p.3). Berge (2009) adds that further studies on knowledge elicitation center on the information obtained from different elicitation techniques including: interviews, protocol analysis, and case study. Only Hoffman, Shadbolt, and Burton (1995) point out the effectiveness of knowledge elicitation in terms of research methodology.

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The growth of technology, the construction of knowledge-based system, and the expert system for special tasks have an impact on knowledge elicitation, increasing the widespread of using knowledge elicitation in different situation. The data obtained from various subjects (for example, expert and trainee) and different situations may yield surprising results how they do their task and how they can achieve it. Therefore, the knowledge elicitation method is necessary to identify and share important information (Cooke, 2007). The question is whether the knowledge elicitation can be applied for the area of language learning and teaching. Most previous research in Applied Linguistics mainly focus on the interview data based on the discourse perspective, such as turn-taking and moves (Alvarez, 2002), interaction/questioning strategies (Wu, 1993) types of questions in classroom setting (Cullen, 1998; Lynch, 1991).

For knowledge elicitation method, such as interview, this consists of asking questions how they perform the tasks. So the knowledge elicitation provides the insightful knowledge how individual can achieve the task during the following processes: planning, implementation, and evaluation (Burge, 2009). It also provides the relationship of each domain and builds model of a particular task. Comparing with Social Sciences, the knowledge building of a specific task is similar to "grounded theory", reflecting what information can frame the theory. Griffee (2005) also clearly defined the grounded theory as "the data emerge from the data and reflect the data" (p.36). However, in the present study, the knowledge elicitation is used to analyze the data based on different perspectives.

The knowledge elicitation is utilized in this study as a mixture between a different research approach and the field knowledge of English language teaching for organizing the task-based curriculum of teaching English. For implementing and investigating the effectiveness of task-based curriculum, the knowledge elicitation provides an insightful organizational model for understanding the problems in the educational situation, trying to narrow down the difficulties, and coming up with the solutions from the colleagues in the university. Therefore, it can be concluded that the knowledge elicitation is used for analyzing the problems from the teachers' perspectives while developing task-based curriculum, a true reflection for course designers and coordinator of task-based program so that they can deal with the authentic situation and manage task-based curriculum more systematically. In this way, they also understand the knowledge that the teacher use to overcome the problems in the task-based syllabus.

1.2 Research Focus

According to the aspect of knowledge elicitation, the interview data is a direct approach used for establishing a knowledge base. Berge (1998) summarizes the types of information obtained from the knowledge elicitation which can be divided as follows (p.21): procedures, problem-solving strategy, goal sub-goals, classification, relationship, and evaluation. For the problem-solving strategy, this information is related to the knowledge needed for finding a solution due to the fact that the present study mainly focuses on the effectiveness of task-based implementation for teaching English. The data interpretation in terms of problem-solving to deduce these difficulties while using task-based curriculum and to develop the implementation processes in an education organization.

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As a consequence, Cooke (2007) and Berge (2009) suggest using the following data analysis: requirements, problem specification, solution descriptions, and rationales for making a decision. In order to reduce the problems of using task-based curriculum for English language teaching, the present study mainly focuses on what procedures the subjects in the present study used for solving the problem in task-based curriculum. The results will enable the curriculum designers and the coordinators to be aware of the problems of task-based teaching from teachers' viewpoints and to establish the solution model for the implementation of task-based curriculum.

Despite a lack of empirical study, the knowledge elicitation should be further investigated to provide new understanding of interview data in the field of language learning and teaching in order to build up the knowledge for solution and task-based curriculum management. As far as the present study has been concerned, there has been no research study on using knowledge elicitation in the field of Applied Linguistics. Hence, the present study aims to examine the problems and solution strategy that the university teachers used while implementing the task-based curriculum in the Faculty of Arts and King Mongkut's University of Technology Thonburi, Thailand, to follow up the development and to analyze the progress of using task-based curriculum in teaching English. So two research questions are posed as follows:

What difficulties did the subjects report while using task-based curriculum of teaching English?

2. What procedures did the subjects used for solving the problems in task-based

curriculum of teaching English?

2. Research Methodology

2.1 Research settings and subjects

The interview data obtained from the previous study by Watson Todd (2006) are used in the present study to examine the situation of English language teaching based on task-based curriculum according to the teachers'aspects, to analyze the problem and solution techniques used by each English language teacher, and to

to follow up the implementation of task-based syllabus in English language learning and Teaching at King Mongkust's University of Technology Thonburi (KMUTT), Thailand. The subjects in this study are university teachers of English language, working in the Department of Applied Linguistics, Faculty of Arts (see Watson Todd, 2006, p.3). As the present study focuses on the interpretation of interview data only, so the other factors such as teaching experience, the familiarity of using task-based syllabus are not included in this study.

2.2 Procedure

The data obtained from task analysis will be included in this study including the teaching materials, further details of course syllabus, the tasks identification, will be analyzed according to knowledge elicitation approach. The task analysis based on knowledge elicitation approach is similar to documentation analysis to understand the information from indirect or direct sourcs. The task analysis, in this sense, refers to the textual descriptions related to contexts, tasks, and materials that the teachers used in task-based teaching at KMUTT in order to build up the model of development process in this situation and to give an overview what problems the teachers have found. For educational development, the documentary sources can provide a great deal of knowledge although it takes time-consuming, (Hoffman, 1989) and does not reveal what teachers really know about task-based instruction and curriculum.

Therefore, the teachers' responses obtained from the semi-structure interview will be further investigated based on the qualitative method to report the problems and the solution procedures that the teachers frequently used in task-based language teaching within this contexts. Bell (1994) suggests the qualitative method for revealing the insightful information, such as participants' ideas. The interview data therefore will be classified into four main categories based on the knowledge elicitation aspects (Berge, 2009, p. 37): 1. requirements, 2. problem specification, 3. solution descriptions, and 4 rationales for making a decision based on the influence of knowledge elicitation approach. However, the question types, the knowledge of teaching, and the individual differences in teaching would have an impact on how individual make a decision to solve a problem.

2.3 Data Analysis

For the first research question, the task analysis will be closely investigated to understand the situation, the teaching materials, as well as the context of development task-based curriculum for teaching English at KMUTT. These factors might have an impact or provide the information whether the problems might be caused by the implementation of task-based curriculum, or the teaching materials, not the teachers. The textural information also provides a model of curriculum planning and teaching. The interview data, related to the problems that the teachers found during the implementation of task-based analysis will be analyzed and categorized by two raters in order to verify and crosscheck the data. For the teachers' responses, the data will be sorted into two categories to identify the problems: 1. Requirements in this study refers to "the needs for change or the needs for developing the task-based curriculum for English language teaching" and 2. Problem Specification can be defined as "any difficulties that the teachers found durig the implementation of task-based curriculum for English language teaching".

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In order to answer the second research question what problem-solving strategy the teachers used for solving the problems in this situations. The solution or problem-solving strategy therefore will be analyzed according to the reported problems. Hence, the processes obtained from teachers will be classified as follows: the solution descriptions and rationales for making a decision for building up the model of solution through the implementatio processes of the task-based curriculum. The solution description, in this sense, means "the processes or the techniques that the teacher used/recommend for solving the problems in task-based curriculum based on their teaching experience". The last one, the rationles for making a decision, refers to "the reasons that the teachers decided to used the this solution technique in a particular situation". Other problems may be found in the semi-structured interview so this information will be listed and analyzed what causes of problems are, and which solution method perceived by teachers will be suitable for the implementation of task-based syllabus.

Although the bias of knowledge elicitation is the interpretation by the researchers in terms of validity (Hoffman, Shadbolt, & Burtion, 1995), the categorization of problems and solution for task-based curriculum in this study are clearly definied for the data interpretation. However, the results in this study will be crosschecked by two raters. The report of solution strategies will be analyzed by using

Frequency to report how often the problems and the solution techniques emerge most in the implementation of task-based curriculum for teaching English, and by usign Pearson Product moment correlation to examine the correlation of rating data interpretation. The high correlation refers to the reliability of the data analysis, identifying the problems and the solution procedures for implementing the task-based curriculum.