My first visit to Cleveland was in 2007 with a group of students enrolled in a history class (the turbulent 60s) and their professor, Dr Kimn Carlton-Smith. I had been is a faculty learning community with Dr Carlton-Smith studying the topic of online learner engagement when we got the idea for a case study on the use of wikis for blended learning with her class. 1) Students didn’t see this as a traditional history course (they had to create the content for the course), 2) the students worked much harder and spent more time on the course than they anticipated, and 3) they learned much more deeply than they realized. Reluctant Engagement https://www.dropbox.com/s/0frbw3iweh8qp31/Reluctant%20Engagement.pptx
The Community College Survey of Student Engagement CCSSE has been show to be an effective measure of learner engagement and achievement. There is a positive correlation between learner engagement and student achievement. The CCSSE surveys students with questions that inform five benchmark areas: Active and Collaborative Learning, Student Effort, Academic Challenge, Student to faculty interaction, and Support for Learners.
This past year we received a Quality Matters Research grant to study the relationship between learner engagement and blended learning course design. We used a modified CCSSE survey asking students to evaluate their experience with an introductory sociology course offered in three modalities: face-to-face, online, and hybrid. The results show there is a difference in student perception, especially in active and collaborative learning and student to faculty interactions as well as student support. I think these differences help us to be aware of the challenges with engaging the learner in online delivery.
According to CCSSE research, this benchmark consistently correlated with measures of persistence. Photo credits CC-BY-NC-SA by Dick Jensen @ http://www.flickr.com/photos/rwjensen/4843777784/in/photostream/
So what are we talking about when we say “Support for Learners”? Perhaps the first things that come to mind are making sure students know how to reach the help desk or the library, and these are essential support services, but we are also talking about creating a sense of community.
The Student to Faculty Interaction benchmark measures the extent to which students and faculty communicate about academic performance, career plans, course content and assignments and is positively correlated to academic and persistence outcomes.
When polled how they prefer to be contacted, faculty responded, via email. However, you may find that students view email as old school – at least many younger students say they prefer texting to email. By posting online office hours – times when you can be reached via phone, chat, or video conferencing (Skype, Google Hangouts, etc.) – students can choose to connect with you virtually as opposed to making a special trip to campus for a face-to-face meeting. Show students how to subscribe to announcements you post in Blackboard, or on the discussion board. In return, subscribe to a discussion thread dedicated to questions for the professor. Use Google Voice to share a phone number with which students can text you. Occasionally share something of your life outside of class – it will help students to see you as a person and not just a distant voice in their online course.
There is evidence that students find coursework more challenging when it requires higher order thinking skills, going beyond information gathering, memorization and reporting out, but including analysis, synthesis, and evaluation.
“ Academic Challenge benchmark measures the extent to which student engage in challenging mental activities, such as evaluation and synthesis, as well as the quantity and rigor of their academic work” The academic challenge benchmark correlates most closely with academic outcomes – GPA, credit completion, degree certificate completion. Academic challenge is something for which the instructor has the most influence. Tell the story of the business law (torts) class and how he 9John Vermeer) had too much material to cover to use these approaches.
These charts describe the degree of student time-on-task for the wiki project described earlier in the presentation. Note the 600 views toward the end of the month.
Clear expectations are absolutely critical to online student success. There can be no ambiguity, students should not have to guess what the instructor is expecting.
In the active learning environment students take a more active role in their learning – not just through study, but creating and sharing content. Well designed group projects leverage diverse student interests, experience, and skills in an iterative process of learning through inquiry.
Triggering events are questions – the best questions are those the students themselves construct. Helping students to frame the questions in the proper context can result in deeper learning and engagement.
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Strategies for Student Engagement in the Online Course
Strategies for Student
in the Online Course
Bill Knapp, Dean
Lakeland Community College
Support for Learners
• Orientation to Technologies
• Asynchronous v Synchronous
• Creating a Sense of Community
• On-campus Events / Newsletters
• Student Organizations
• Social Networks
Student to Faculty Interaction
• Access via email
• Online Office Hours
• Subscribing to messages / SMS
• Share the human side
Bloom’s Taxonomy Wheel
The instructor is responsible
for this part
• Performance and Authentic Assessment (creating
• Problem-based learning
• Writing multiple drafts of a paper
• Use of Rubrics for Assessment
• Scenarios / Role Playing