This paper describes the production of a software program for Master of Education students studying the "Introduction to Research Methods" course at a tertiary institution in Hong Kong. The course was originally delivered in a lecture mode, which proved unsatisfactory in providing sufficient learning support for the students. The paper describes how the program was designed for a blended learning environment, drawing on constructivist learning principles and the use of simulations. The software program that emerged was a compromise to resolve a number of tensions, such as the need to present a rationalised, pedagogically-oriented version of a complex and messy reality, and the desire to enhance student autonomy while working within the limitations of technical boundaries. The paper concludes by reflecting on the lessons learnt in the design process.
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