Experienced faculty rate distance education most effective

Experienced Faculty Rate Distance Education Online Classes most Effective

for Achieving Many Student and Administrative Outcomes

Kelley A. Conrad, Doctoral Program Faculty for IO Psychology,

Herman Van Niekerk, Associate Dean of Instruction Doctoral Business Programs,

University of Phoenix School of Advanced Studies, and

Cornelius Brown, Deputy Sector Navigator

for the California Community College Chancellor Office

Explain how the topic is relevant to the field of online, blended, and/or distance
education and training. *:
We found experienced faculty rated distance education the most effective of the three major
classroom strategies for achieving 15 of 38 student outcomes included in our survey.
Second most effective for achieving desired outcomes were mixed mode classes combining
distance learning techniques with face to face classroom exposure. Experienced instructors
rated the traditional classroom as effective for the fewest number of student outcomes.
These results can help instructors and administrators when designing courses and selecting
approaches.
Takeaway 1 *:
Have a clear understanding of the superiority and importance of distance education for
achieving important student and administrative outcomes in higher education.
Takeaway 2 *:
Have a list of specific areas where distance education is rated superior for achieving student
and administrative outcomes as rated by experienced college and university faculty.
Session Description *:
Participants were solicited by email from several academic faculty ListServs and the
attendance list from the 2016 DT&L conference. The final sample was a convenience
sample of 148 experienced faculty all of whom had taught more than 15 college or university
classes at US colleges and universities. The following were the regions represented and
number of respondents from that region: New England (11), Middle Atlantic (15), East North
Central (16), West North Central (24), South Atlantic (40), Mountain (18), Pacific (22),
Missing (5). Results comparing outcomes evaluated by type of classroom-- Instructors
judged distance instruction highest in comparison with traditional classes and mixed classes
where: Specific learning objects were most influential; Using group work was common and
influential; The student level of efforts was highest; Student mastery of material was highest;
Grading of all assignments was important; Standardized tests were most frequently used;
Participation, accuracy, and mastery of content were most important in determining student
grades; Student work habits have the most influence; Instructors feel grades should reflect
student effort; The importance of assigning zeros for incomplete assignments; Classes are
valuable for selecting, identifying, or grouping students; Classes are frequently used to
evaluate school programs; Where criterion referenced grading is used. Traditional classes
were judged highest on classes where-- Level of responsibility was highest; A greater variety
of assessments of student progress are made; Where norm referenced grading is used.
Classes using a mix of traditional classroom and distance instruction were judged highest
when-- Providing feedback to students; The class is more challenging to grade; The
objective is to teach student responsibility; The objective is to motivate students; It is desired
to measure student progress; Attendance has the greatest influence on grades; Behavior
and attitude in class impact grades; Students can use extra credit to improve scores;
Quizzes are used in evaluation and teaching. Experienced faculty rated distance teaching
most effective in achieving 15 of 38 student and administration outcomes, second, most
effective was mixed mode classes, lowest rated were traditional classes. These results can
help instructors and administrators in designing courses.
Key theme/focus area 1 *:
Measuring learning & assessment
Distance education leadership/administration
Key theme/focus area 2 *:
Online teaching strategies
University of Wisconsin
Kelley A. Conrad
Herman van Niekerk
Cornelius Brown
Presentation Date: 
Wednesday, July 26, 2017
Event or Conference: 
33rd Annual Conference on Distance Teaching and Learning
Presentation Type: 
Poster Presentation
Boyer's Domain: 
Presentation Location: 
Monona Terrace Convention Center
Madison, WI 53715
United States
Abstract: 
As part of a larger survey investigating how teachers develop grades for students, we examined instructor ratings of the three major classroom structures for differential effects on 38 key teaching and administrative outcomes. Our research question was, “How do experienced college and university instructors rate the three major classroom formats for effects on student and administrative outcomes?” Participants were solicited by email from several academic faculty ListServs and the attendance list from the 2016 DT&L conference. The final sample was a convenience sample of 148 experienced faculty responding as having taught more than 15 college or university classes. Our study was descriptive quantitative design utilizing a section of an online survey exploring the perceptions of experienced faculty about the effects of type of classroom on student and administration outcomes. In contrast to many fears that have been expressed claiming distance teaching online is less effective than traditional classes, we found experienced faculty rated it as more effective in achieving 15 of 38 student outcomes included in our survey. This was consistent with the U.S. Department of Education meta-analytic study (Means, Toyama, Murphy, Bakia, & Jones, 2010) but a stronger effect than reported there. Second, most effective in achieving desired outcomes were mixed mode classes combining distance learning techniques with face to face classroom exposure. Experienced instructors rated the traditional classroom as effective for the fewest number of student outcomes. These results can help instructors and administrators who are designing courses for maximum impact and which support administrative tracking.