CEITR Researchers Representing UOP at AECT 2017

CEITR Researchers Representing UOP at AECT 2017


Researchers from the University of Phoenix will represent UOP at the annual Association for Educational Communications and Technology (AECT) conference on November 6-11, 2017 in Jacksonville, Florida. While most researchers are UOP faculty, several presentations represent collaborative efforts between UOP faculty and faculty from other universities, and between UOP faculty and UOP students or UOP alumnus. Altogether 13 AECT conference presentations will involve UOP faculty, alumnus, and students. Details follow.


Dr. Patricia Shopland will present her paper as featured research. Three researchers will lead a panel of discussion. Two research teams will lead round table discussions. Seven research teams will present papers in concurrent sessions. A collaborative team from UOP and Brigham Young University (BYU) developed one of the concurrent papers. A collaborative team including members from UOP and California State University East Bay (CSU) developed the paper for a second concurrent session. Many of the researchers are supported by and working within the Center for Educational and Instructional Technology Research (CEITR). Four alumni are also involved in the concurrent sessions. The researchers and short descriptions of each paper are presented in the next sections.

Featured Research

Researcher: Patricia Shopland

Title:  The Impact of a School wide 1:1 iPad implementation on Teacher Learning Process Design at a Suburban Public Middle School Located in the Greater Boston Area

The traditional content-centered instructional paradigm in middle schools is changing as a result of educators’ increased attention to the learning process-centered 4Cs, constructivist approaches to learning, and the nationwide popularity of 1:1 tablets and iPads. The majority of teachers who participated in this mixed methods descriptive study reported they did create a variety of innovative learning activities for their students who have 24/7 use of an iPad and they enjoyed the opportunity and freedom to be creative.


Panel of Discussions


Research Team: Sandra Nunn, Lequisha Brown Joseph, Michelle Susberry Hill

Title: 2017 McJulien Panel Discussion:  A Reflection of Culturally Responsive Teaching in Education

In this panel discussion, panelists Dr. Sandra Nunn, Dr. Lequisha Brown-Joseph, and Dr. Michelle Susberry Hill, winners of the 2016 McJulien Scholar Best Paper Award, will discuss updated research that addresses current literature, perspectives, and practices regarding culturally responsive teaching in education.  As part of the discussion, the panelists will address these considerations within K-6, 7-12, and higher education.


Concurrent sessions:

Research Team: Fern Entrekin, Debra Bacon, Patricia Akojie, Therese Kanai

Title: New Ways of Learning: Perception and Experiences of Online Doctoral Students

Meta-data analysis was used to identify common themes in primary qualitative research studies on online doctoral students. A systematic search identified common properties in isolated studies. Positive factors included cohort groups, supportive mentors, and the ability to peruse a doctoral degree. Obstacles faced included balancing work, family, school, and a sense of isolation. Five common themes emerged in the analysis; support, time management, anxiety, satisfaction, and sacrifices.


Research Team: Karen Johnson, Michelle Hill, Mary Stout, Medgar Roberts (UOP alumnus), Lisa Wells (UOP alumna)

Title: What Leaders Should Know about Social Media, Collaboration, and Doctoral Learning

A diminutive amount of research can be found about how or why doctoral students use social media to enhance their Personal Learning Network (PLN) and learning environmental designs. The purpose of this qualitative research study was to explore through content analysis both the views and experiences of a group of doctoral students using Facebook. Leaders will gain useful information and insight into the impact of social media on teaching, research, culture, and learning environmental designs.


Research Team: Susan Ferebee and Andrew Lawler

Title: American Indian/Alaskan Native cultural identity influences on postsecondary experiences based on secondary data

This study identifies cultural identity influences shared by American Indian/Alaskan Native postsecondary students in online venues. Specifically, the problem is that educational leaders do not know what American Indian/Alaskan Natives consider a successful educational experience as aligned with their cultural identity. A narrative inquiry as provided in Internet blogs and YouTube video transcripts are examined through content analysis. By identifying factors that influence the social context, educators may be better positioned to improve educational attainment.


Collaborative Research Team: Elizabeth Johnston (UOP), Xeno Rasmusson (CSU), Barbara Foyil (UOP), Patricia Shopland (UOP)

Title: Witnesses to Transformation: Family member experiences providing individualized music to their relatives with dementia

Family members often used IPad, IPods, headphones, splitters, and other technical devices to share preferred, culturally relevant, digitized music with relatives with dementia. Sharing familiar music enhanced memories and interactive opportunities where family members connected, and communicated with aging relatives. Educational leaders have an opportunity to recognize and introduce the importance of culture in music education and curriculums. Teaching technological skills could support lifetime access to culturally valued music in face-to-face or virtual contexts.


Research Team: Rita Hartman, Elizabeth Johnston, Marty Hill

Title: Exploring Socio-Cultural Approach to Generating Educational Change from K-12 School Leaders’ Perspectives: A Qualitative Content Analysis

Educational leaders have the capacity to effect change within the system.  Principals and others gained a deeper understanding of the student and teacher school experience from shadowing a student for a day.  Themes for change included strengthening community, structural changes in the school day, supporting connectivity, and finding new opportunities.  This presentation provides the results of a qualitative content analysis framed in empathetic design thinking and based on personal experiences, observations, and reflections influencing future actions.


Research Team: Michael Green, David Proudfoot, Jan Otter, David Cook (UOP alumnus)

Title: STEM Certification in Georgia’s Schools: A Causal Comparative Study Using the Georgia Student Growth Model'

The demand to prepare students for emerging STEM careers inspired Georgia to implement innovative reforms including STEM certified schools. Little is known about how Georgia’s STEM certification processes influenced student achievement in math, science, English language arts (ELA), and social studies. A causal comparative study of traditional and STEM certified schools found mixed results. This study informs educators regarding STEM certification, student learning gains, and the impact of education reform initiatives.


Collaborative Research Team: Mansureh Kebritchi (UOP), Ken Plummer (BYU), Richard Swan (BYU), Heather Leary (BYU).

Title:  Evaluation of Decision Based Learning (DBL) and its relation with students critical thinking skills and achievements

Critical thinking is one of the essential skills in 21st century job market but not adequately developed among graduates. In this presentation we will share the results of a study that examined an innovative pedagogy called Decision-Based Learning designed to catalyze acquisition of critical-thinking skills and enhance students’ achievements. The presentation will be useful for instructional designers and instructors in higher education and help them further enhance critical thinking skill among students. 


Research Team: Linda Landon, Barbara Foyil, Verta Midcalf, Elizabeth Johnston

Title: Strengthened Culture Competency of Graduate Students by Using Facebook, Pinterest, or Blogging

 In an era of expanding globalization and social media, the idea of cultural sensitivity had not been addressed. The design of this study was a quantitative, non-experimental, correlation research design. The research question was the relationship between graduate students’ demographic characteristics and use of social media sites including interaction engagement, respect for cultural differences, interaction confidence, interaction enjoyment, and interaction attentiveness. Nonparametric ANOVA and comparisons between two groups were applied to determine if relationships exist between predictor and outcome variables.


Research Team: Patricia Steele, Elizabeth Johnston, Gerald Olives, Cassandra Smith, Liston Bailey.

Title:  Exploring pedagogical foundations of existing virtual reality (VR) educational applications: A content analysis study

An analysis of selected VR products developed for education showed that most were experiential with others categorized as discovery learning, constructionism, situated learning within a community of practice, or other.  Educators need insights into the pedagogical foundations of VR products to prepare, apply, assess and evaluate the educational value of VR applications. These research findings will support efforts to use innovative learning products within an educational context. Presenting and publishing will disseminate findings to appropriate audiences.


Round table Discussions


Research Team: Mansureh Kebritchi, Patrick Turner (UOP alumnus), Sally Evans, David Heflich,

Title: Effects of Online Computer games on Academic Achievement, Motivation, and Retention Rate of Nontraditional Undergraduate Students

Nontraditional students are now the majority of the 17.6 million undergraduates enrolled in universities; however, their dropout rate is rather high. This review of literature examines the influence of using computer games in online courses on nontraditional undergraduate’s motivation, academic achievement, and retention rate. The results would help instructional designers and instructors further learn about implication of using games to address the need of nontraditional students as an ever increasing student population in higher education.



Research Team: Mansureh Kebritchi, Sandra Nunn, Jack Avella

Title: Learning Analytics Methods, Benefits, and Challenges in Higher Education: A Systematic Literature Review

Few studies have synthesized prior research to provide a combined overview of learning analytics issues in higher education.  To address the problem, a systemic literature review was conducted to identify methods, benefits, and challenges of using learning analytics in higher education.  Results of this study provide an integrative report for faculty, course developers, and administrators about methods, benefits, and challenges of learning analytics to help improve teaching and learning in higher education. 


Congratulations to all researchers! 

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