June 24, 2007
June 24, 2007
June 27, 2007
Educational Research and Methods
12.1008.1 - 12.1008.11
Learning Effectiveness as a Function of the Technologies Employed in Online Learning Settings
Technology is often viewed as an important factor that impacts the effectiveness of online learning systems. To explore the importance of various technologies, the authors conducted a comprehensive study that investigates the experiences of students and instructors that are involved in online learning. A number of questionnaires concerning perceptions, experiences, resources, and perceived effectiveness related to online education developed by the research team have been administered to a sample of students (over 4,500) at a large number of educational institutions throughout the United States. Survey participants constitute a large sample group that represents diverse backgrounds from geographically dispersed institutions worldwide. Responses were analyzed and discussed in the paper. The analysis focuses on the utilization of technology in online education and explores how students view its effectiveness as a function of the types of technologies used. Study covers various standard technologies such as instant messaging, email, discussion boards, chat rooms, web conference, audio communication, and electronic whiteboard as well as the use of relatively new virtual reality based environments. A comparative analysis was also conducted to identify the differences between face-to-face and online learning settings. Based on the findings of the analysis and the data gathered from the survey participants, a number of design methods and techniques that would influence the development of effective online course delivery systems are developed. This study is the first step in a longer program of research that will ultimately yield enhanced systems for online learning.
Effectiveness of online learning settings has become an important research question as the number of online programs increase dramatically in the last decade. Numerous researchers studied the effectiveness of online education. Since the research problem has multiple dimensions, different researchers focused on different aspects of online learning. For example, some researchers have studied the effectiveness of online learning by focusing on its implications on performance in work place. Lima et al. studied the determinants of effective online training to reveal how these variables affect learning performance and transfer performance, two important elements of training effectiveness in the workplace. Their study shows that effective online education (OE) systems need ease of interaction, computer self-efficacy, and efficient communication in the virtual perspective as well as institutional factors such as support of seniors and continuous learning culture1.
The question of how to assess the effectiveness of online education is a challenging one by itself. Rovai2 proposed a framework that is designed to assess student performance, determine program and cost effectiveness, monitor quality of technology and support
Ozan, E., & Tabrizi, M., & Wuensch, K., & Aziz, S., & Kishore, M. (2007, June), Learning Effectiveness As A Function Of The Technologies Employed In Online Learning Settings Paper presented at 2007 Annual Conference & Exposition, Honolulu, Hawaii. https://peer.asee.org/2060
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