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Factors associated with student persistence in an online program of study: a review of the literature

This integrated literature review examined factors associated with the ability of students to persist in an online course. Lack of persistence in online education and its consequence of attrition, is an identified problem within the United States and internationally. Terminology has wavered between persistence and success, where each has been interchangeably used to characterize a student that completes a course and continues to program completion. Separate searches were conducted in Academic Search Premier, CINAHL Plus, the Directory of Open Access Journals (DOAJ), Education Full Text, Ovid, and the Journal of Online Learning and Teaching (JOLT). Search terms included persistence, distance education, and online learning. Inclusion criteria included published after 1999, articles from a peer-reviewed journal, and articles addressing student factors leading to persistence. Exclusion criteria included articles not related to factors of persistence, no original data, and articles not written in English or not related to online courses. Factors associated with student persistence in an online program include satisfaction with online learning, a sense of belonging to the learning community, motivation, peer, and family support, time management skills, and increased communication with the instructor. Persistence carries the nuance of complexity beyond mere success. Factors unrelated to knowledge have the ability to provide support, thus allowing the student to overcome hardships in completing a course. If persistence factors are not present in sufficient quantity, the student may be at risk of withdrawing from an online course.

This integrated literature review examined factors associated with the ability of students to persist in an online course. ...  Show Full Abstract  

Authors: Hart, Carolyn
Date: 2012
Geographic subjects: United States; North America
Journal title: Journal of interactive online learning
Resource type: Article
Subjects: Teaching and learning; Outcomes; Participation;

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Fine print, vol. 37, no. 3, 2014

This issue of 'Fine print' contains the following feature articles: 'Ingenious A-frame programs' by Lynda Achren (pages 3-7) which is a collection of five snapshots of successful local pre-accredited programs; 'A finer grained assessment approach' by Michael Christie and Jennifer Dunbabib (pages 8-12) which provides an overview of an approach that is gaining traction as part of the Tasmanian Adult Literacy Action Plan; and 'Social learning: resource platforms and the dynamics of 'push' and 'pull'' by Colin Lankshear (pages 13-17) which explores innovative approaches to learning and some of the theory behind developments in online learning. This issue also contains: 'Higher order thinking skills and the adult learner' by Rhonda Raisbeck (pages 18-20) which explores a themed approach that integrates higher order thinking skills; 'Mathematising' by Beth Marr (pages 21-22) which considers the nexus between mathematics and numeracy teaching; 'Ethical dimensions' by Tricia Bowen (pages 23-24) which explores philosophical theories in relation to teaching; 'Pride of place shines through' by Sarah Deasey (pages 25-26) which provides a rundown of the 2014 Learn Local awards; 'Stories from the field' by Louise Wignall (pages 26-27) which highlights the power of story; 'ACFE Flagship project' by Veronica Volkoff and Rosemary Sharman (pages 28-30) which reports on an adult, community and further education action research project; 'Seven stories, the last not ended' by John Aitchison (pages 31-33) which provides an overview of South Africa's struggles with adult literacy and basic education; and 'Working in the middle ground: an interview with Nina Bekker' by Lynne Matheson (pages 34-35).

This issue of 'Fine print' contains the following feature articles: 'Ingenious A-frame programs' by Lynda Achren (pages 3-7) ...  Show Full Abstract  

Date: 2014
Geographic subjects: Tasmania; Australia; Oceania;
Resource type: Journal issue
Subjects: Technology; Teaching and learning; Literacy;

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The representation of minority, female, and non-traditional STEM majors in the online environment at community colleges: a nationally representative study

Using data from more than 2,000 community college science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) majors in the National Postsecondary Student Aid Study, this research investigates how ethnicity, gender, non-traditional student risk factors, academic preparation, socio-economic status, and English-as-second-language/citizenship status relate to online course enrollment patterns. Even after controlling for other factors, Blacks and Hispanics (Black and Hispanic men, in particular) were significantly underrepresented in online courses, women were significantly overrepresented, and students with non-traditional student risk factors (delayed enrollment, no high school diploma, part-time enrollment, financially independent, have dependents, single-parent status, and working full-time) were significantly more likely to enroll online. However, although ethnicity, gender, and non-traditional factors were all important predictors for both two- and four-year STEM majors, at community colleges, ethnicity and gender were more important predictors of online enrollment than non-traditional characteristics, which is the opposite pattern observed at four-year colleges.

Using data from more than 2,000 community college science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) majors in the ...  Show Full Abstract  

Authors: Wladis, Claire; Hachey, Alyse C.; Conway, Katherine M.
Date: 2015
Geographic subjects: United States; North America
Journal title: Community college review
Resource type: Article
Subjects: Students; Gender; Demographics;

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Opportunities and challenges of MOOCS: perspectives from Asia

The recent growth of massive open online courses (MOOCs) has led to discussions of technology-based instruction revolutionizing traditional higher education teaching. Here [the author analyzes] the origin of MOOCs, as well as trends in education initiated by these courses, and compares them with OpenCourseWare (OCW), YouTube EDU, and iTunes U. Specifically, this paper will discuss the opportunities and challenges presented by MOOCs, from the perspective of Asian countries, with reference to economics, culture, language, and instruction.

The recent growth of massive open online courses (MOOCs) has led to discussions of technology-based instruction ...  Show Full Abstract  

Authors: Chen, Joyce Chao-chen
Conference name: International Federation of Library Associations and Institutions World Library and Information Congress
Date: 2013
Geographic subjects: Asia
Resource type: Conference
Subjects: Teaching and learning; Higher education; Technology;

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DeMOOCratization of education?: massive open online courses, opportunities and challenges: views from Mexico, Thailand and Senegal

Massive open online courses (MOOCs) have been portrayed as an alternative path to access higher education. However, perspectives from developing countries on how MOOCs might impact educational landscapes in those regions are still scarce. This study offers views on MOOCs, through the perspectives of various actors (mainly from developing regions - Mexico, Thailand and Senegal): MOOC instructors, through personal interviews; MOOC students, through a survey distributed to 391 individuals; MOOC providers (university coordinators, in close contact with developers of MOOC platforms); and other educational stakeholders with experience in online education. [The author] analyzes opportunities and challenges surrounding MOOCs in emerging economies; drawing on the issues of MOOCs' accessibility, their objectives and rationales, advantages and shortcomings. [The author] explores the question of who has access to what kind of education through MOOCs. What's in it for higher education in developing and emerging economies? Views surrounding MOOCs are largely positive, yet [the author] encountered echoes to some concerns voiced by other specialists: significant barriers keep MOOCs out of the reach of underprivileged populations; prestigious universities have implemented MOOCs motivated partly by marketing reasons; and the pedagogical methods may not always turn out to be 'revolutionary' or even different from traditional instructor-led teaching at all. Interviewees and respondents often hold ambivalent opinions: the feeling that MOOCs do give access to higher education to people who otherwise could not have it; while recognizing that they are largely benefiting people who have already had advanced educational opportunities.

Massive open online courses (MOOCs) have been portrayed as an alternative path to access higher education. However, ...  Show Full Abstract  

Authors: Franco Yanez, Clara
Date: 2014
Geographic subjects: Mexico; North America; Thailand;
Resource type: Working paper
Series name: NORRAG working paper
Subjects: Economics; Higher education; Equity;

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2002 RTO Case Study Project 'Flexible learning in practice': case studies

The following case studies from the 2002 RTO Case Study Project 'Flexible learning in practice' document the use and application of Australian Flexible Learning (AFL) Framework products and services by registered training organisations (RTOs). The case studies are an initiative of the AFL Framework for the national vocational education and training system 2000-2004 as a means of offering 'real-life' examples of how RTOs are implementing e-learning strategies with the assistance of AFL Framework products and services. Each participating RTO has documented their experiences over a six-month period (June 2002 to November 2002) and have been selected from each state and territory representing the TAFE, private provider, enterprise and VET in Schools sectors. Each case study will provide you with an insight into how RTOs are implementing flexible learning and will cover areas such as: how to implement AFL Framework products and services; change management practices; customisation of flexible learning products and services; professional development; access and equity considerations; flexible learning strategic planning; blended learning techniques; and marketing, among others. Each case study highlights the various ways in which AFL Framework products and services can be applied to the learning environment to enhance client delivery and service.

The following case studies from the 2002 RTO Case Study Project 'Flexible learning in practice' document the use and ...  Show Full Abstract  

Corporate authors: Australian Flexible Learning Framework (AFLF)
Date: 2002
Geographic subjects: Australia; Oceania
Resource type: Report
Series name: Flexible learning in practice RTO case study
Subjects: Teaching and learning; Research; Equity;

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The impact and reach of MOOCs: a developing countries' perspective

[Massive] open online courses (MOOCs) are a recent but hugely popular phenomenon in the online learning world. They are hailed by many as a solution for the developing world's lack of access to education because MOOCs can provide learning opportunities to a massive number of learners from anywhere in the world as long as they can access the course through Internet. However, a close consideration of the ability of learners from most developing countries to make use of MOOCs seems to contradict this rhetoric. This paper discusses features of MOOCs and looks at them from a developing countries' perspective to conclude that due to a complicated set of conditions ('access', language, computer literacy, among others) prevailing in developing countries, MOOCs may not be a viable solution for education for a large proportion of people in these areas of the world. The paper further shows the need for more data on the demographics of MOOC participants from developing countries to form a better understanding of MOOCs role in educating people from developing countries.

[Massive] open online courses (MOOCs) are a recent but hugely popular phenomenon in the online learning world. They are ...  Show Full Abstract  

Authors: Liyanagunawardena, Tharindu; Williams, Shirley; Adams, Andrew
Date: 2013
Journal title: eLearning papers
Resource type: Article
Subjects: Teaching and learning; Economics; Equity;

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Understanding the MOOC trend: the adoption and impact of massive open online courses

This paper addresses three questions: What makes [massive open online courses] MOOCs different from previous online and open education efforts? Will MOOCs generate a positive return on investment for their providers? What can be learnt from early entrants into large-scale online instruction?

This paper addresses three questions: What makes [massive open online courses] MOOCs different from previous online and open ...  Show Full Abstract  

Authors: Attis, David; Koproske, Colin; Miller, Chris
Date: 2012
Resource type: Paper
Subjects: Higher education; Teaching and learning; Finance;

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Making real the dream of Education for All through open schooling and open universities in Ghana

Although the last three decades have witnessed astronomical increases in enrollment in basic education, the challenges of access, equity, and quality continue to confront countries, especially in sub-Saharan Africa. In Ghana, education sector policies and reforms have been unable to deal with low transition rates from primary to junior high schools, from junior high schools to senior high schools, and from senior high schools to tertiary level. Children and young students who are unable to continue fail to re-enter because of the absence of complementary or alternative pathways. The old paradigm of physical expansion continues to dominate policies of access. Although several developed and developing countries have used open schooling and open universities to widen access, the success of these programs has been founded on strong policies, commitment of government, and huge investment in technology. Indeed, the future lies with open schooling and open universities.

Although the last three decades have witnessed astronomical increases in enrollment in basic education, the challenges of ...  Show Full Abstract  

Authors: Tagoe, Michael
Date: 2014
Geographic subjects: Africa; Ghana
Journal title: SAGE open
Resource type: Article
Subjects: Participation; Outcomes; Pathways;

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A remote solution to strengthening workforce capacity [webinar]

In this Australian Council for Adult Literacy webinar (55 minutes), the presenter describes the challenges and benefits of providing professional development support to three tutors teaching foundation learners in school, youth and community contexts in the Northern Territory. The tutors are studying towards a unit within the Address Foundation Skills in Vocational Practice Skill Set - a competency designed to build the capacity of Australian vocational trainers and assessors to address the foundation skills development needs of learners within their vocational practice. This webinar may be of interest to foundation skills tutors, vocational trainers and anyone involved in tutor professional development.

In this Australian Council for Adult Literacy webinar (55 minutes), the presenter describes the challenges and benefits of ...  Show Full Abstract  

Authors: Bauer, Ros
Date: 2014
Geographic subjects: Northern Territory; Australia; Oceania
Resource type: Audiovisual
Subjects: Workforce development; Teaching and learning; Providers of education and training;

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