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ERIC Number: EJ1079576
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2015-Sep
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 14
Innovative Orientation Leads to Improved Success in Online Courses
Taylor, Jean M.; Dunn, Margie; Winn, Sandra K.
Online Learning, v19 n4 Sep 2015
A team of instructional designers, educators, and the School of Liberal Arts (SLA) academic program coordinator from a nonprofit online college, collaborated on producing short voice-over videos with interactive elements that address the most common technology frustrations of beginning students. These videos were inserted into the "Start Here" page of the pilot study courses. Courses were selected that had a higher than average withdrawal rate and that also tended to have a broad grade distribution for students who completed the course. The videos with voice-over covered basic navigation, such as posting to a discussion board, submitting an assignment to a drop box, reviewing a grading rubric in the grade book, and opening a graded copy of an assignment to view instructor feedback. The orientation element contained interactive tools that allowed students to check their learning of the skills covered in the videos. The orientation videos were available throughout the 8 weeks of the course. After viewing the videos, the students were asked to complete a short survey, which included both quantitative and qualitative feedback. The responses to the survey were extremely positive, ranging from 84.48 to 90.67 on a 100-point scale. The team also examined course withdrawal rates and the grade distribution before and after the insertion of the videos. The data for almost all of the pilot study courses showed a drop in withdrawals after the use of the video orientation element. Several courses showed a significant drop in withdrawals. The examination of the pre- and postintervention grade distribution showed an improvement in grades for almost all of the pilot courses. This improvement in grade distribution was statistically significant in some courses.
Descriptors: Instructional Design, Online Courses, Virtual Universities, Pilot Projects, Orientation Materials, Video Technology, Interaction, Withdrawal (Education), Academic Persistence, School Holding Power, Educational Technology, Student Surveys, Feedback (Response), Student Attitudes, Course Evaluation, Grades (Scholastic), Outcomes of Education, Student Improvement, Statistical Significance, Statistical Analysis, Adult Education, Tutorial Programs, College Students, Orientation, Liberal Arts
Online Learning Consortium, Inc. P.O. Box 1238, Newburyport, MA 01950. Tel: 888-898-6209; Fax: 888-898-6209; e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org; Web site: http://onlinelearningconsortium.org/read/online-learning-journal/
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: Higher Education; Postsecondary Education; Adult Education
Authoring Institution: N/A