Distance education delivery modes and learning objectives: Experiences of South Dakota public university system faculty
Jack Fei Yang, University of South Dakota, United States
University of South Dakota . Awarded
The purpose of the study was to determine public university South Dakota distance faculty perceptions regarding intended levels of learning objectives for four selected modes of course delivery. The study also examined how learning objectives could predict mode learning efficiency and identified faculty perceptions toward distance education. The four modes examined in this study included correspondence courses, telecourses, Digital Dakota Network, and online Internet delivery.
A researcher-developed questionnaire was used to collect data from all faculty who offered distance education courses through at least one of four distance modes at the six public universities that comprised the South Dakota Board of Regents in the 2002 academic year. The study analyzed faculty distance education delivery satisfaction, faculty levels of learning objectives based on Bloom's taxonomy, faculty perceptions toward learning efficiency related to delivery modes, faculty perception toward distance education, and faculty motivation to engage in distance education.
The rate of respondent return was 53.2% distributed generally in similar numbers across faculty who taught through one of the four modes of delivery. Results of this study were tabulated using Microsoft's Excel spreadsheet and the Statistical Package for the Social Sciences SPSS 10.0. The following statistical measures were applied: frequencies, means, standard deviations, t tests, one-way analyses of variance (ANOVAs), Tukey's Honestly Significant Difference post-hoc tests, and stepwise regression analysis.
Results of this study showed that faculty had similar application level learning objectives, regardless of the mode of delivery used. The DDN mode had the highest interaction frequency, and the lowest learning efficiency and faculty satisfaction. The correspondence mode had the lowest interaction frequency. The on-line mode had the highest faculty satisfaction and perceived learning efficiency. Increased correspondence learning efficiency could be predicted when faculty focused on the knowledge objective level; increased on-line learning efficiency could be predicted when faculty focused on the evaluation highest learning objective level.
Distance educators need to consider the importance of instructor communication with students as it is affected by delivery modes and higher level learning objectives. All modes of delivery have utility in reaching higher level learning objectives, but the costs of equipment and labor vary across the modes.
Yang, J.F. Distance education delivery modes and learning objectives: Experiences of South Dakota public university system faculty. Ph.D. thesis, University of South Dakota.
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