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ERIC Number: ED555765
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2013
Pages: 125
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: N/A
ISBN: 978-1-3034-6119-4
Predictors of Online Learning Success in a Rural Community College
McPhaul-Moore, Elizabeth
ProQuest LLC, Ed.D. Dissertation, Northcentral University
The number of courses offered online and the level of students enrolled in online courses has dramatically increased over the last several years. The National Education Center for Education Statistics reports that during the 2006-2007 school term, 97% of public two-year institutions across the nation offered college-level distance learning courses. During the fall 2010 school term, over 6.1 million students were taking at least one online course. This is an increase of 560,000 students over the previous year. Questions exist regarding the online mode of educational delivery and reports concerning successful completion of online courses are mixed. Attrition rates for classes taught online are possibly 20-50% higher than traditional face-to-face courses. The success of online learners should be central to the goals of an institution, making student persistence and retention a necessary requirement for success. It would be beneficial for institutions to determine what factors are related to online student success and develop programs and strategies to increase course completion and thereby increase retention. The purpose of this quantitative study was to analyze the relationships between personal characteristics (motivation, self-regulation, and self-efficacy), online classroom environment, grade point average, and course completion among undergraduates enrolled in online courses. The sample population included 115 students, consisting of traditional and non-traditional online students enrolled in a rural community college located in the southeastern United States. Results showed that the level of self-efficacy and final course grade were strongly correlated, (r(108) = 0.23, p = 0.007). The relationship between degree of self-regulation and final course grade was meaningful, (r(108) = 0.17, p = 0.036), as was the relationship between GPA and final course grade (r(113) = 0.61, p < 0.001). No significant relationship was found to exist between teacher presence, social presence, and online learning success. These findings align with other study results that portray successful online learners as self-directed, possessing a conscious intent to learn, with the ability to develop a goal and carry it through to completion. Future research should include a larger and more diverse group of participants, with an effort to query those students who choose to withdraw from their online course. [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: Two Year Colleges; Higher Education; Postsecondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A