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ERIC Number: ED517737
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2010
Pages: 98
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: N/A
ISBN: ISBN-978-1-1240-6438-3
A Case Study of the University of Mississippi and Its Response to the Growth of Online Institutions
Kinkle, Lanitra M.
ProQuest LLC, Ph.D. Dissertation, Capella University
The purpose of this study was to identify and explain the factors that have contributed to the University of Mississippi's slow development of online degree programs compared to its peer and competitor institutions. A total of 10 University of Mississippi administrators ( n = 2) and faculty ( n = 8) participated in face-to-face interviews and responded to 12 questions that were constructed by the author. Responses to these questions were recorded, analyzed, and discussed, and relevant data was provided related to student enrollment, graduation rates, and number of online courses offered. Seven of the interview questions were directly related to answering the guiding research question "what are the reasons why the University of Mississippi has not maximized online education programming?" The following themes emerged from the data: (1) Participants expressed limited knowledge and/or experience with online education. (2) Faculty participants were positive, but conditional in their attitudes toward online education. (3) Administrative participants were negative in their attitudes toward online education. (4) Participants were divided in their level of awareness (limited vs. significant) of competition for students by other postsecondary institutions. (5) Participants expressed a belief that online education is not maximized at the University of Mississippi for a variety of reasons such as perceived inferior quality; limitations in staffing, funding, time, or computer skills; or perceived lack of feasibility for a particular type of class. While significant increases in online enrollments and online course offerings were noted at the University of Mississippi from 2001 to 2006, successive declines in online enrollments and course offerings were seen in 2007 and 2008. As noted in interview responses and the themes that resulted from this study, it is recommended that the university (1) educate faculty and staff about the need to remain competitive with peer and rival institutions while maintaining the quality of education; (2) focus on the advantages of online education (e.g., increased enrollment, increased revenue, improved access to courses, enhanced flexibility); and (3) provide quality assurance along with appropriate staffing, funding, time, and computer training for faculty and administrators alike to enable the growth and development of online education. [The dissertation citations contained here are published with the permission of ProQuest LLC. Further reproduction is prohibited without permission. Copies of dissertations may be obtained by Telephone (800) 1-800-521-0600. Web page:]
ProQuest LLC. 789 East Eisenhower Parkway, P.O. Box 1346, Ann Arbor, MI 48106. Tel: 800-521-0600; Web site:
Publication Type: Dissertations/Theses - Doctoral Dissertations
Education Level: Higher Education; Postsecondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Mississippi