Asee peer logo

Providing Additional Support To Internet Based Distance Learning By Applying Supplemental Instruction Techniques

Download Paper |


2003 Annual Conference


Nashville, Tennessee

Publication Date

June 22, 2003

Start Date

June 22, 2003

End Date

June 25, 2003



Conference Session

Engineering Technology Poster Session

Page Count


Page Numbers

8.957.1 - 8.957.10



Permanent URL

Download Count


Request a correction

Paper Authors

author page

Marty Frisbee

author page

Deborah Sharer

Download Paper |

NOTE: The first page of text has been automatically extracted and included below in lieu of an abstract

Session 1547

Providing Additional Support to Internet-Based Learning by Applying Supplemental Instruction Techniques

Marty D. Frisbee, Deborah L. Sharer Department of Engineering Technology University of North Carolina at Charlotte


Supplemental Instruction (SI) has proven to be an effective tool used to increase student performance in academic courses that have traditionally been labeled difficult. Typically, these courses are characterized by low student success rates and course content that is very analytical in nature, such as the material presented in many engineering courses. During the SI sessions, an SI leader fields questions from students regarding problem areas in their current coursework, prepares sample test questions, and helps the students develop more effective study habits. It is a requirement that the SI leaders have previously demonstrated competence in the applicable course material. All SI leaders are required to attend both preparatory training sessions prior to becoming an active leader and ongoing training sessions throughout the semester after assuming their roles as instructors. These training sessions outline effective means of material presentation, problem solving techniques, test preparation techniques, and note taking strategies. Historical data, gathered primarily from traditional classroom settings, suggests that students can successfully manage difficult courses by attending SI sessions on a regular basis.1

With the increasing popularity of non-traditional forms of education, such as Internet based distance learning, SI faces new challenges. Those same courses labeled as difficult for the traditional on-campus student must now be presented effectively to the distant education student entirely through the Internet medium. Success in these difficult courses hinges on providing additional support to the distance education student in a manner that is well suited for their non- traditional schedules. Electronic SI (eSI) sessions may provide this additional support. Therefore, the demands of distance education have initiated the progression of supplemental instruction from the campus classroom to the Internet medium. This paper will examine the challenges, successes, and shortcomings of an actual engineering distance education course using Internet based supplemental instruction sessions.


College courses that have been labeled as difficult typically contain highly analytical content and can often be characterized by low student success rates. Historical data suggests that the implementation of a Supplemental Instruction (SI) program targeting those difficult courses can help students to successfully manage those courses.1, 3 The SI program was developed at the University of Missouri in 1973 by Dr. Deanna Martin and has been implemented in over 600 U.S. and international institutions.1 However, the SI program was designed for the traditional campus environment and, as a result; the historical data on student performance tends to reflect

Proceedings of the 2003 American Society for Engineering Education Annual Conference & Exposition Copyright © 2003, American Society for Engineering Education

Frisbee, M., & Sharer, D. (2003, June), Providing Additional Support To Internet Based Distance Learning By Applying Supplemental Instruction Techniques Paper presented at 2003 Annual Conference, Nashville, Tennessee. 10.18260/1-2--11785

ASEE holds the copyright on this document. It may be read by the public free of charge. Authors may archive their work on personal websites or in institutional repositories with the following citation: © 2003 American Society for Engineering Education. Other scholars may excerpt or quote from these materials with the same citation. When excerpting or quoting from Conference Proceedings, authors should, in addition to noting the ASEE copyright, list all the original authors and their institutions and name the host city of the conference. - Last updated April 1, 2015