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ERIC Number: ED532609
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2009
Pages: 152
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: N/A
ISBN: ISBN-978-1-1095-4655-2
Factors That Shape Administrators' Decisions for Implementing Online Courses in Small Private Universities
Osborn, Kevin D.
ProQuest LLC, Ph.D. Dissertation, University of Kansas
The recent Sloan report found that online course enrollments are increasing 13% annually. This study investigated how the vision and philosophy of the academic leadership in small private universities influence the development of online learning. Investigations regarding online learning leadership have noted four core issues: (1) a clear institutional vision for online learning, (2) policy for integrating online learning, (3) budgeting for integrating online learning, and (4) planning for outcomes and assessment. The researcher investigated 7 small private institutions that offered online courses or programs and were part of the 18 Kansas Independent College Association (KICA). Onsite interviews were conducted with Academic Affairs VPs at seven KICA institutions. The interviewer asked a series of questions concerning online learning policy, definitions, budget, and outcomes assessment. Recordings were transcribed and data were evaluated, coded, and organized into central themes using Boyatzis' framework (1998). A comparison of independent rater's coding to the primary rater's coding using Cohen's Kappa found a high (0.83) correlation. Results revealed an overall lack of vision and planning to support the growth of online learning. All participants stated that the desire to increase revenue was the primary reason for considering online courses while expanding educational offerings was secondary. Participants acknowledged that online learning was gaining importance in higher education. However, they often do not choose online learning for their undergraduate programs because they associate online learning with adult learners, believing that a full-time or residential experience is central to their institution's unique mission. Academic leaders should explore online courses as a way to extend the institution's academic reach and best serve the needs of the students, faculty, and community. The President's role in advocating for online learning is critical. Presidents may wish to take a leadership role in assuring that at least one fully or partially online undergraduate course is taught online. This approach will serve to assess the viability of online courses for their institutions. Additionally, small private institutions could benefit from their peer institutions by forming alliances to support online program development and training efforts. [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: Kansas