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The Power of the Human Face in Online Education

, Griffith University, South East Queensland, Australia

IJAVET Volume 10, Number 1, ISSN 1947-8607 Publisher: IGI Global


The modern student exists in a highly technical and digitally driven educational world. Online delivery of courses and interactions, with the primary purpose of enhancing learning, and access to learning opportunities is becoming almost mainstream. Yet, despite the broad availability of online education courses and systems, the completion rates and levels of student satisfaction with online courses remains comparatively low. Studies have indicated that online students are seeking personal engagement to drive their learning. This project looked at the importance of having a human face at the heart of the online course materials to help develop a more personal level of engagement. The project, carried out between 2016 and 2018, involved a randomized control trial of 84 students, and compared two sets of course materials, for a common course topic, one with human face-based resources, and one without. The results clearly showed a significant increase in student engagement with the human face-based resources, but the learning outcomes, for those who completed, were not significantly different between the two groups.


Patterson, D. (2019). The Power of the Human Face in Online Education. International Journal of Adult Vocational Education and Technology, 10(1), 13-26. IGI Global. Retrieved February 25, 2021 from .