Volume XIX, Number II, Summer 2016
Faculty Professional Development and Student Satisfaction in Online Higher Education
|Robert Todd Kane||Melanie Shaw|
by Robert Todd Kane
J. Blake Snider
With the ever-increasing availability of online education opportunities, understanding the factors that influence online student satisfaction and success is vital to enable administrators to engage and retain this important stakeholder group. The purpose of this ex-post-facto, nonexperimental quantitative study was to investigate the impact of faculty professional development, faculty degree status, and faculty longevity upon online student satisfaction and success. A large, archived dataset from an online public state university was analyzed. Repeated measures Hierarchical Linear Modeling (HLM) analysis was used to explore changes in student satisfaction over time. Results showed that both training and degree were not significant predictors of student satisfaction. On the contrary, faculty longevity was found to be a predictor of student satisfaction. Recommendations for future research include incorporating qualitative analysis and expanding the study to diverse institutional types to determine whether findings are consistent.
Winning One Program at a Time: A Systemic Approach
|Adam Schultz||Kay Zimmerman|
by Adam Schultz
Many Universities are missing an opportunity to focus student recruitment marketing efforts and budget at the program level, which can offer lower priced advertising opportunities with higher conversion rates than traditional University level marketing initiatives.
Status Tracking and Reporting the Quality Matters Process at the University of North Georgia
|Nina Lamson||David Babb|
by Nina Lamson
The University of North Georgia utilizes the internal Quality Matters (QM) process to review all their online courses. As our online course offerings have increased, the need to devise a system to track the QM process, ensure timely reviews, and begin recertification of previously reviewed courses was necessary. As a result, several reports have been devised to capture this process: 1) a master list of all online course offerings, 2) bi-weekly status reports, and 3) QM reviewer status reports. The process that is used and the resulting reports will be shared in this report.
Institutional Characteristics and Student Retention: What Integrated Postsecondary Education Data Reveals About Online Learning
|Edward T. Chiyaka||Alec Sithole|
|Fidelis Manyanga||Peter McCarthy|
|Brian K. Bucklein|
by Edward T. Chiyaka
Brain K. Bucklein
Online course delivery continues to grow as a viable means of providing increased educational access to more students, but low student retention rates remain a major challenge. In this study, key institutional characteristics that influence student retention in postsecondary education are analyzed. These are student-faculty ratio, graduation rate, acceptance rate, enrollment rate, institutional aid rate, default rate, and institution type. Using multivariable regression analysis, our findings show that graduation rate, default rate, and college type were significantly associated with retention rate among online degree-granting institutions. Furthermore, graduation rate was found to be strongly positively linearly related with retention rate, while default rate was strongly negatively linearly related with retention rate. Overall these findings have direct implications on the planning and management of online instruction.
Transitioning to the Learning Management System Moodle from Blackboard: Impacts to Faculty
by Page Varnell
What are the workload impacts to faculty during a Learning Management System (LMS) transition? What type of support is needed by faculty during an LMS transition? Transitioning to a new LMS may result in faculty problems with learning a new technology platform in addition to teaching. The purpose of this phenomenological study was to explore the impact that an LMS transition had on faculty workload and instructional practices. All faculty interviewed expressed a need for additional support in the form of either a course release, compensation, professional development and/or mentoring. The results of this study can be used to increase alignment between administration and faculty and improve faculty job satisfaction.
Use of Immersive Simulations to Enhance Graduate Student Learning: Implications for Educational Leadership Programs
|Robert H. Voelkel||Christie W. Johnson|
|Kristen A. Gelbert|
by Robert H. Voelkel
Christie W. Johnson
Kristen A. Gilbert
The purpose of this article is to present how one university incorporates immersive simulations through platforms which employ avatars to enhance graduate student understanding and learning in educational leadership programs. While using simulations and immersive virtual environments continues to grow, the literature suggests limited evidence of avatar technology currently used at the university level, especially in educational leadership preparation and other graduate level programs. The authors identify a step-by-step process to effectively employ the use of immersive simulations as a practitioner tool at the university level. This article provides a process for incorporating immersive simulations into graduate educational leadership programs that can be successfully duplicated to best support professional preparation of current and future educational leaders in developing best practices for stakeholder engagement, human talent management, instructional leadership, and other areas relevant to transformational leadership. The authors argue that immersive simulations do indeed better support graduate students.
From the Editor
Two days have passed since the tragic events in Orlando, and like most of you, I am immensely heartbroken and trying to make some sense of our world.
For those of us in distance learning, the internet has brought us the ability to help take education to the most rural and remote places. Our meaning comes in knowing that education can provide for a greater understanding of humanity, as well as a stronger citizenry.
Yet, it is this same internet that has created rampant opportunities for bullying, an instantaneous forum for hate, and misinformation that can lead to dangerous and violent misunderstanding.
I believe that part of a solution – one thing that we can impact � comes through our own resolve to consciously nurture the hearts of our students, whether it be directly in the online classroom or through our faculty training programs and student support.
We must also take advantage of the many, many opportunities that we have every day, from the home to the workplace, to live with love and peace � even when and especially when we are most challenged. A better day begins within each of us.
June 15, 2016
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Last modified: June 15, 2016