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ERIC Number: EJ814822
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2008-Nov
Pages: 17
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 52
ISSN: ISSN-0268-0513
Evaluation of e-earning Outcomes: Experience from an Online Psychotherapy Education Programme
Blackmore, Chris; Tantam, Digby; van Deurzen, Emmy
Open Learning, v23 n3 p185-201 Nov 2008
SEPTIMUS is a one-year Europe-wide postgraduate theoretical course for psychotherapists and counsellors provided entirely via the Internet. It may be used as part of a training course, with face-to-face elements provided locally, or for continuing professional development. The course was developed at the University of Sheffield in collaboration with psychotherapy training institute partners in seven other European countries. Two studies involving 167 SEPTIMUS students and 60 comparable face-to-face students were undertaken: (1) "Study 1." Drop-out rates for the SEPTIMUS programme were found to be low, and comparison between those dropping out and those completing did not highlight any significant factors linked to distance learning. However, students cited "finance", "distance from training centre, lack of practical experience, family commitments" and the "intensity of their working weeks" as having been barriers to taking face-to-face learning courses in the past; and (2) "Study 2." SEPTIMUS students (e-learners) were compared with students taking comparable attending (face-to-face) theoretical courses also being provided by partners in the project to psychotherapy trainees. Significant differences were found in "distance from training institute" and "ability to visit training institute." SEPTIMUS students had higher levels of "computer ownership, frequency of Internet use" and "IT skills" than attenders; these factors when examined in Study 1 did not have an impact on the drop-out rate of e-learners. e-Learning can overcome barriers to traditional learning in psychotherapy, particularly distance from a training centre, without loss of student satisfaction or student performance. Factors sometimes thought to be obstacles to e-learning, such as information technology skills, were not found to be significant barriers--although they may have affected recruitment. Certain aspects of e-learning, such as the tendency to facilitate self-disclosure, were found to be very beneficial, particularly in the context of psychotherapy programmes. (Contains 5 tables and 1 figure.)
Routledge. Available from: Taylor & Francis, Ltd. 325 Chestnut Street Suite 800, Philadelphia, PA 19106. Tel: 800-354-1420; Fax: 215-625-2940; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: Higher Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A