ERIC Number: ED466237
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 2000-Mar
Measuring Student Variables Useful in the Study of Performance in an Online Learning Environment.
Kennedy, Cathleen A.
This paper discusses the measurement of unobservable or latent variables of students and how they contribute to learning in an online environment. It also examines the construct validity of two questionnaires: the College Experience Survey and the Computer Experience Study, which both measure different aspects of student attitudes and behavior towards college and computers. The paper theorizes that five student characteristics influence scores on the 50 items tested on these two surveys. These characteristics are: (1) purpose in taking the course; (2) level of interaction with teachers; (3) study habits; (4) attitude about using computers; and (5) ability to use computers. Based on the analysis of the instruments, it was concluded that both instruments needed some adjustments to more effectively measure the effect of latent variables and that administration bias (traditional classroom students must opt out while online students opt in) needs to be addressed. The paper also suggests that focus groups be conducted to better understand how students interpret key questions. Once these modifications have been made to the instruments, they will be better able to compare the student groups and control for initial differences among students. (LD)
Publication Type: Numerical/Quantitative Data; Reports - Research; Tests/Questionnaires
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A