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ERIC Number: EJ971607
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2012
Pages: 11
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 32
ISSN: ISSN-1066-8926
Chickering's Seven Principles of Good Practice: Student Attrition in Community College Online Courses
Tirrell, Tim; Quick, Don
Community College Journal of Research and Practice, v36 n8 p580-590 2012
As online enrollments escalate, so does concern about student attrition rates. There is an abundance of literature addressing student success in online courses, particularly using constructivist learning theories to create engaging learning experiences. Also emerging from the literature is the "Seven principles of good instructional practice" by Checkering and Gamson as an accepted rubric for evaluating effective online instruction. This study focused on whether the use of instructional strategies as measured by the seven principles had an effect on student attrition rates in online courses. Full and part-time faculty at three community colleges in Virginia who taught online course(s) in the last three semesters completed an online survey to determine the extent to which they used instructional strategies reflecting the constructivist-based seven principles in their online courses. Scores from the survey were then compared to the attrition rates in their courses. Results indicated both groups strongly used instructional strategies reflecting the seven principles of good practice in their online courses with full-time faculty scores ranging a bit higher. When the results for the principles were examined individually rather than as a set, both groups scored lower on principles reflecting innovative instructional strategies. No relation between the extent to which faculty reported using those instructional strategies and student success as measured by attrition rates were found. However, a moderate relation was found with the third principle, "encourage active learning." This indicated that faculty who made strides toward actively engaging students found some success in reducing student attrition. (Contains 4 tables.)
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 - Research
Education Level: Two Year Colleges
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Virginia