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ERIC Number: ED548516
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2012
Pages: 102
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: N/A
ISBN: 978-1-2674-2457-0
The Relation of Social Presence to Online Students' Perceived Learning and Satisfaction with Their Instructor
Olson-Wenneker, Tess R.
ProQuest LLC, Ph.D. Dissertation, Capella University
This study investigated whether online social presence, understood as individuals' perceptions of the genuine presence or other people within a communication medium, is related to online students' evaluations of the quality of their courses and their satisfaction with their class facilitators. Undergraduate and graduate students enrolled in online courses at a single private Midwestern university completed an online survey measuring three variables: their perceptions of online social presence, their perceptions of the quality of their learning, and their satisfaction with their class facilitator. Factor and reliability analyses of responses to the 10 perception of social presence items on the survey indicated that a single construct was measured by the items, which also had good internal reliability. Results showed that the students perceived a high degree of social presence in their online classes and evaluated both their learning and their course facilitators as being satisfactory. Linear regressions showed that perceptions of online social presence were highly positively correlated both with students' perceived learning and with their facilitator satisfaction. Results were compared to those from a similar study done about a decade ago that also found positive correlations between perceived online social presence and perceived learning and facilitator satisfaction. In the older study, perceived social presence, perceived learning, and facilitator satisfaction were all rated considerably lower than was done in the present study. This suggests that substantial improvements have been made over the past decade in designing and implementing online courses so that students do not feel isolated from others in those courses but perceive the real social presence of other students to a high degree. The findings that the surveyed students' degree of perceived learning and their facilitator satisfaction were also considerably higher than what was found in the previous study suggest that substantial improvements have also been made in online education in these areas over the past decade. [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