A final submision by todd vatalaro


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A final submision by todd vatalaro

  1. 1. Author Release (This form must be signed and submitted with the finished copies of the Research Proposal.) Name___________Todd J. Vatalaro____________Group No.__H7701__ The College of Professional Studies has permission to use my research proposal as example of acceptable work. This authority includes the right to duplicate the manuscript as well as check out the proposal from one of the College libraries. Signature____________________________________________ Date____________ The College of Professional Studies may not use my research proposal as an example of acceptable work. Duplication of the manuscript as well as circulation of the work is prohibited. Signature____________________________________________ Date____________
  2. 2. A Study of the Comparison between Distance Education and Traditional Education A Proposal Submitted By Todd J. Vatalaro In Partial Fulfillment of the Requirements for The Bachelor of Science Degree In Organizational Behavior The University of San Francisco College of Professional Studies November 23, 2002
  3. 3. Evaluation of Research by USF Faculty Student Name____Todd J. Vatalaro___________________ Group____H7701__________________________ Proposal Title A Study of the Comparison between Distance Education and Traditional Education. Instructor’s Comments: Research Proposal Evaluation Outstanding ______ Good ______ Satisfactory ______ Meets Minimum Standards ______ Unsatisfactory ______ __________ ________________ Date USF Faculty
  4. 4. Table of Contents Page Abstract i Chapter 1: Introduction p. 1-5 Background 1 Problem Statement 6 Research Question to be Answered 6 Statement of Research Objective 6 Definition of Terms 7 Importance of the Study 7 Scope and Delimitations of the Study 7 Chapter 2: Review of the Literature p. 8-11 Chapter 3: Methodology p. 12-15 Introduction 12 Subjects 13 Research Design 14 Operational Definitions 14 Instrumentation 14 Procedures 15 Treatment of Data 15 References p. 16-16
  5. 5. Abstract 1. Title: A Study of the Comparison Between Web-based Education and Traditional Classroom Education. 2. Statement of the Problem: Today distance education has become a popular means for organizations and educational institutions to expand the means of teaching to its employees and students. The problem is that more research needs to be done to determine if web-based education is as effective as traditional education. Web-based programs are designed to provide education that is equal to or better than the traditional classroom. Typically these courses are never evaluated to determine their effectiveness. The goal of this study was to determine if web-based education is better, worse, or as good as traditional education. 3. Research Objectives: To Investigate if Web-Based is as equal as Traditional Education. 4. Brief Statement of Research Method: From a population of 3 schools in Sacramento, California, one hundred (18 to 25) year old females were chosen to take the same course. (50) would take the class in the traditional way and (50) would take a web-based course.
  6. 6. 5. Resources Needed and Available: Approval from Los Rios Community College District and advice from the dean of the History department; collection and comparison of the test scores; budget of $500. 6. Projected Start and Completion Date: One full Fall, academic semester. No dates available at this time. i
  7. 7. Chapter One Introduction Background of the Problem What is was based learning? Web-based learning is course work that is taken over the Internet. Web-based education used to be called correspondence studies. These courses were offered through various forms of media like the mail, cable television broadcast and video. What is distance learning today? Some of the older techniques are still in existence. However, it now comprises of internet- based courses, video conferencing, streaming video and audio (Killion, 2000). Distance education has been around since the written language. Major universities have utilized correspondence study courses since the 1890s to provide off-campus learning opportunities for millions of adults. In the sixties, a team of Wisconsin extension consultants helped Great Britain develop off- campus teaching systems needed to establish the British Open University. Arguably, the invention of television and video recording had the most profound influence on distance learning in the 1950’s. In the 1980's broadcast television was changing with the advent of satellite and cable programming services. To respond to the shift in technology, satellite television networks were being created that would deliver training and instruction. Large corporations like IBM and Kodak recognized the benefit from 1
  8. 8. providing training using satellite transmissions. The Department of Defense also invested heavily into all branches of the military to set up a satellite networks for training purposes. By serving their members at a distance, time and money could be saved long-term by reducing the amount of travel and loss of work hours of an employee. Arguably the most significant advancement in distance education took place with the introduction of the Internet and web sites. The roots of the Internet lie in a joint project developed by the United States military and the Rand Corporation. The project was called ARPANET. The goal of the ARPANET was to allow US authorities to communicate with one another in the aftermath of a nuclear attack. During the 1960’s all forms of communication went through a hub, or centralized location. A foe of the United States could attack these centralized locales, bringing all communication to an end. Communication networks of the day were chained point-to-point, with each place on the network dependent on the link before it. If one point in the network were disabled, the whole network would become useless. As the saying goes, “a chain is only as strong as its weakest link.” Living with the threat of a nuclear war prompted a new way of looking at communications in America. America needed to develop a communication system that would allow defense branches of the United States government to 2
  9. 9. stay in contact with one another in case of a national emergency. The project was known as ARPANET. The United States government would spend millions of dollars on ARPANET. The cold war network project ARPANET successfully connected various computer systems across America. The ARPANET project continued for years and was gradually phased out after it was declared complete and the Cold War ended. Scientist and engineers were allowed access to the existing ARPANET networks. This allowed scientists and engineers to communicate and share information across numerous universities. Scientists and engineers were amazed and excited about this new, revolutionary way of communicating. They continually improved and modernized this network. The network grew as new schools and government agency would connect their computer systems to this network. Many different protocols and computer languages were also being developed. Organizations and scientists began to argue over what would be defined as the “standard.” Everyone was convinced that his or her way of computing and networking was superior. One protocol that was gaining a foothold was TCP/IP. TCP/IP is a networking protocol that is robust enough to handle the high volume of information being transferred over the network. TCP/IP 3
  10. 10. also allowed different computer systems to communicate with one another. With TCP/IP, a global network was becoming a reality. Universities and scientists from America and Britain successfully were communicating and exchanging data with one another. Initially, use of the Internet was mostly limited to e-mail and newsgroups. In 1991, the University of Minnesota came up with an easy way to organize information called Gopher, the predecessor to the World Wide Web. Gopher, using a series of menus, was soon used to organize all kinds of information stored on servers in universities, libraries, and government agencies. But what came to be known as "gopherspace" was very chaotic and time consuming. Search utilities within Gopher, such as Archie and Veronica, were helpful but didn’t even come close to the efficiency of the search engines we know today. In the early 1990's the United States government decided to release use of the Internet to the public an opened it up for commercial activity. Also during this period Apple and IBM were introducing low cost consumer computers. These two events would ignite an economic firestorm that would permanently change the way people did business. Internet use was growing by more than 10 percent a month. The early 80’s ARPANET had only about four hundred hosts. In 1990 there were over one hundred thousand. With the introduction of the Internet also 4
  11. 11. came the mass use of e-mail. E-mail is an abbreviation for electronic mail, an electronic means for communication. People from all around the world were now able to send messages and correspond with one another instantly. The Internet was exploding in excitement, and its success would become a catalyst for new and improved methods of distance learning. Professionals in the field of distance education say that the personal computer and the Internet reinvented the face of education and how students learn at a distance. Current estimates suggest that over four million computers are part of the Internet. 5
  12. 12. Statement of the Problem Today web-based education has become a popular means for organizations and educational institutions to expand the means of teaching its employees and students. The problem is that more research needs to be done to determine if web-based education is as effective as traditional classroom education. Web-based programs are designed to provide education that is equal too or better than the traditional classroom. Typically these courses are never evaluated to determine their effectiveness. The goal of this study was to determine if web-based courses are better, worse, or as good as traditional classroom education. Research Question to be Answered Is web-based education better, worse, or as good as traditional classroom education? Statement of Research Objective The research objective is to investigate whether web-based education is as effective as a traditional classroom education. Today web-based education is offered in nearly every higher education institution. Its popularity has raised questions about its credibility. This study will provide a way to document and measure students multiple question test scores to determine if web-based education is as effective as classroom face-to-face education. 6
  13. 13. Definition of Terms Independent variable: Web-based Education vs. Traditional Education. Dependent variable: Test scores. Importance of the Study This research study is important to institutions and organizations that are expecting that web-based education is as effective as traditional education. Scope and Delimitation of the Study This study selected subjects that were enrolled at three junior colleges in Sacramento, California. Subjects were required to complete an introduction to History course. The findings of this study are limited in scope, as it is focused on the comparison of a web-based and education and traditional education History class. Due to the increasing use of web-based distance education in America, this study was intended to see if web-based education is better, worse or as good as traditional class room education. 7
  14. 14. Chapter Two Review of Related Literature This chapter will look at other studies in the field of web-based education. In the review of literature related to web-based education, the research focused on web-based education vs. traditional education, to help determine if web-based education is better, worse or as good as traditional education. For the purpose of this study, the primary focus of the research is student post-test scores, and final grades to help evaluate the two groups. Web-based is becoming a more vital part of the higher education family. Just about every American university offers online web-base courses. This form of distance education reaches a broader student audience, better addresses student needs like transportation, saves money, and more importantly uses the principles of modern learning pedagogy (Fitzpatrick, 2001). The most significant impact on adult learning over the past few years has been online web-based distance learning. Early research indicates that online learning is at least as effective as learning in conventional classrooms, a studies summarized by the Center for Excellence in Distance Learning report that technology has a positive impact on learning effectiveness. (Killion, 2000). However according to Robbie Fitzpatrick (2001), technology also has a negative effect on the distance learner. Case in point, a study of student frustration with web-based courses maintains, “the literature about distance education is dominated by enthusiastic studies and accounts.” 8
  15. 15. A research study by Rhonda Brady (2002) states the first obstacle that educators and students face with online courses is the fact that everyone taking the course is not on the same technological level. The first primary objective is to come up with ways to help facilitate the teaching of the actual technology needed before they can even get to the course offered. Only 10% to 15% of all articles published about online educations by 1991 were research studies. So up to this point in the history of distance education researches are beginning to look at the possible problems that relate to this form of education. Dan Carnevale (2002) brings up another issue in web-based education, accreditation. Accrediting officials are trying to determine how to evaluate web-based programs that let students gain credit via online instruction. In a recent issue of Distance Education System Wide Interactive Electronic Newsletter Volume 6.3 March (2001) looked at ways to create assessment tools for distance education. Susan B. Miller, Director, University of Wisconsin set out to modify existing “Classroom Assessment Techniques” (CATs) to help faculty assess distance education courses. Miller also shares online web-base resources with instructors interested in leveraging the innovative technologies in the field of distance education. The material on these websites allows instructors to use assessment tools and guidelines that will help to give them methods that are effective but not time-consuming. Tools like: articulation of goals, 9
  16. 16. specification of the strategies intended to achieve these goals and the reason that these strategies are expected to be effective; agreement on the evidence that will convince specified individuals that the strategies have achieved the goals; and the gathering, interpretation, and the use of information. As Kouzez and Posner (2002) put it, “The key to success and perhaps even survival in the next century- for all of us, but for the leaders especially-is the familiar expression “lifelong learning.” As researchers and educators get more involved in the uses for web-based education and how to overcome the barriers to learning, we will continue to see improvements in the delivery of curriculum, course materials and proper assessment. The literature reviewed suggests considerable research has found that successful distance-learning students tend to be highly motivated, self-disciplined and are generally older than traditional students. The literature reviewed also concludes that there are no significant differences found between pre-test scores, homework grades, research paper grades and final test scores of distance learning students and traditional students. Nevertheless, there were significant differences between the two groups with regard to age, post test scores and final exam scores. This study, provides data and analysis on students of distance learning and those of traditional learning, based on and post-testing comparisons. 10
  17. 17. This study will attempt to answer the question is web-based education: better, worse, or as good as traditional face-to-face classroom education. 11
  18. 18. Chapter 3 Methodology Introduction This study will attempt to contribute the following question: Is web-based education better than traditional education? The research objective is to (measure, compare, investigate) student test scores in relation to web-based education and traditional education. Subjects For this study the participants were (100) undergraduate students enrolled in Introduction to History classes at a small sized community college in Sacramento, California. The university offers AA degrees in liberal arts and GE transferable units to both UC and USC institutions. The Introduction to History was designed to develop an understanding of basic History. A multiple-choice test was developed to determine the level of understanding of basic History. One hundred students were enrolled in the same Fall semester. Fifty students would attend the traditional on-campus classroom and the other fifty students would take the same web-based online course via the Internet. Both groups were female and were 18-25 years old. These students were free to choose to take the traditional class or the online web-base class. These courses had identical: content, timelines, guidelines and material. 12
  19. 19. Both web-based and traditional classes had the same instructor, studied the same course content, used the same course materials, completed the same assignments, and were allotted the same time frame for completion of assignments. All were given the same (post-test), final exam. The multiple choice post-test was designed, by the instructor. A quasi-experimental research design was used to collect data for the study. An analysis of co-variance was used to compare the two variables. The significant element of quasi-experiments is the measure of the dependent variable, which it allows for comparison. In such cases, quasi-experimentation often involves a number of strategies to compare subjectivity, such as rating data, testing, surveying, and content analysis. This research looked at testing results. Once all the test scores were collected it was time to test and see if there was a significant differences between web-base and traditional education test scores. The researcher used the Mann-Whitney U test method for this data. Using the Mann-Whitney U the researchers were able to test the frequency of occurrence within these to independent categories. 13
  20. 20. Research Design This study is the comparison of distance education compared to traditional education. Operational Definitions The independent variable in this study is distance education vs. traditional education. Students will attend these classes that will be facilitated by the instructor chosen for this study. Web-based distance education is learning that occurs when learner and instructor are separated by time and space and is not real-time. Web -base instruction is a formalized teaching system specifically designed to be carried out remotely over the Internet. Traditional education involves internal students attending resident classes conducted by faculty members on a campus and requires a physical face-to-face interaction. The dependent variable is test scores. Instrumentation The research instrument used for this study will be a multiple-choice test with 100 questions. 14
  21. 21. Procedures The researchers worked with the dean of the History department and the instructor of the courses. Test scores from (100) subjects were compared. This study had approval from Los Rios Community College. Once all the test scores were collected by the instructor the researcher was able to obtain copies of the original tests given back to the instructor. Age and ethnicity was obtained to look at the demographic variables. Treatment of Data The data from the tests will be reviewed and examined for comparison. The collected nominal data will be analyzed using the chi-square. Using the chi- square the researchers were able to test the frequency of occurrence within these to independent categories. 15
  22. 22. References Bartlett, T. (1997). The hottest campus on the Internet. Business Week, 3549, 77-80. Brown, G. (1978). Lecturing and Explaining. New York: Methuen. Davis, E. L. (2001). The future of education [Online]. Available: http://www.wco.com/~mktentry/edfutur.html Edelson, P. J. (1998, February 17). The organization of courses via the Internet, academic aspects, interaction, evaluation, and accreditation. Paper presented at the National Autonomous University of Mexico, Mexico City. E Edelson, P. J. (1998). The organization of courses via the Internet, academic aspects, interaction, evaluation, and accreditation. Paper presented at the National Autonomous University of Mexico, Mexico City. Fried, R. (2001). The Passionate Teacher. Boston Massachusetts: BeaconPress. Fuhrmann, B. (1983). A Practical Handbook for College Teachers. Boston: Little, Brown. McKeachie, W. (1986). Teaching Tips. Lexington Massachusetts.: Heath. Mugridge, I. (1991). Distance education and the teaching of science, Impact of Science on Society 41 4, 313-320 Sherry, L., & Morse, R. (1995). An assessment of training needs in the use of distance education for instruction. International Journal of Educational Telecommunications, 1(1), 5-22. Phipps, R., & Merisotis, J. (1999). What’s the Difference? A review of contemporary research on the effectiveness of distance learning in higher education. Washington: THE INSTITUTE for Higher Education Policy. Schramm, W. (1977). Big media, little media. Beverly Hills, CA: Sage. 16