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ERIC Number: ED519775
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2010
Pages: 232
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 0
ISBN: ISBN-978-1-1242-7555-0
An Analysis of Dialogistic Presence on Community College Web Sites in Nine Mega-States
Shadinger, David Allen
ProQuest LLC, Ed.D. Dissertation, North Carolina State University
The institutional web site is ubiquitous and has emerged as nearly universal in its utilization as a recruiting and informational tool for the twenty-first century community college. Community colleges have embraced utilization of the Internet through the establishment of institutional web sites containing volumes of information, forms, and links. Researchers have uncovered an analogous trend among the single most influential set of prospective community college students--high school juniors and seniors. This Internet savvy community college target public prefers to find information on the Internet during their college search process. Concurrently, many community colleges have included functions and links for their web site visitors aligned with Kent & Taylor's (1998, 2002) theoretical dialogic public relations categories of dialogic loops, ease of use, timeliness of information, encouragement of return visits. The individual dialogic loops utilized by community colleges are predominantly ones that facilitate the admissions, class registration, and financial aid processes, not necessarily the ones desired by potential students to develop a relationship with the institution during the college selection process. This research found that when a community college used dialogic loops, they were highly likely to incorporate Kent & Taylor's (1998, 2002) other related dialogic functions to make it easy for a web site visitor to navigate the web site, encourage visitors to return to the web site, and provide current and/or recently updated information. When community colleges utilized the dialogic categories, they were also highly likely to provide multiple functions and links in the newly defined category of passive information. Conversely, this research found no relationships between the various Kent & Taylor (1998, 2002) defined dialogic categories and the institutional attributes of full-time student enrollment, location of the campus as defined by the U.S. Census, or the time required to load the institutional web site's home page. The results of this study show that community colleges are generally embracing the need for a web site and many institutions are incorporating dialogic loops on their institution web site. Unfortunately, community colleges do not appear to make efficacious use of their web site to encourage return visits or provide more, timely, and current information. Community colleges are falling short in their public relations efforts to develop the type of web-based, dialogic, communicative relationship sought by their key public--prospective students. [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:]
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Publication Type: Dissertations/Theses - Doctoral Dissertations
Education Level: Higher Education; Postsecondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A