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ERIC Number: ED553017
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2013
Pages: 210
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: N/A
ISBN: 978-1-3030-2614-0
Learning at the Speed of Light: Deep Learning and Accelerated Online Graduate Courses
Trekles, Anastasia M.
ProQuest LLC, Ph.D. Dissertation, Capella University
An increasing number of university programs, particularly at the graduate level, are moving to an accelerated, time-compressed model for online degree offerings. However, the literature revealed that research in distance education effectiveness is still confounded by many variables, including course design and student approach to learning. Particularly in graduate-level coursework, it is essential that students gain deep, expert- level understanding within their given fields, but how accelerated programs can best serve this need has remained largely unexplored. The purpose of this investigative, embedded single-case study was to explore instructional design strategies and characteristics of online, asynchronous accelerated courses and students' choices of deep or surface learning approaches within this environment. Through qualitative exploration of data from the Revised Study Process Questionnaire, student interviews, and course design analysis of an online, accelerated master's program in educational administration, it was found that these adult learners overall approached learning quite deeply. As an implication for program and instructional designers, course activities that were engaging, hands-on, practical, and collaborative were found to encourage students to adopt deeper approaches more often. When courses were consistent and user-friendly, students were able to adopt routines that allowed them to complete coursework in the limited time that they had, given their many professional and personal obligations. However, when due dates were changed frequently, or when too many exams or less clear and engaging projects were given over those that were more complex and authentic, students tended to adopt more surface approaches to learning. [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; Adult Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A