Michael Barbour
Sacred Heart University
• “based upon the personal experiences of

those involved in the practice of virtual
schooling” (Cavanaugh et al., 2009)
•...
• “a paucity of research exists when

examining high school students enrolled in
virtual schools, and the research base is...
• “indicative of the foundational descriptive

work that often precedes experimentation
in any scientific field. In other ...
Comparisons of student performance based upon
delivery model (i.e., classroom vs. online)
2. Studies examining the qualiti...
Bigbie &
over half of students who completed FLVS courses
McCarroll (2000) scored an A in their course & only 7% received ...
Ballas & Belyk
(2000)

Bigbie &
McCarroll (2000)
Cavanaugh et al.
(2005)

McLeod et al.
(2005)

participation rate in the ...
Haughey &
Muirhead (1999)

preferred characteristics include the highly motivated,
self-directed, self-disciplined, indepe...
• “Online student scores in math, reading, and writing

have been lower than scores for students statewide over
the last t...
• “Compared with all students statewide, full-time

online students had significantly lower proficiency
rates on the math ...
Miron, G. & Urschel, J. (2012). Understanding and improving full-time
virtual schools. Denver, CO: National Education Poli...
Virtual School Designer: Course Development
 design instructional materials
 works in team with teachers and a virtual s...
Developed by team on behalf of the
online program
 a team of teachers, multimedia specialists,

instructional designers
...
Copyright
 who owns the content?
 what happens if teacher leaves?

Expertise/Training
 “more than 31% of teachers repor...
Similar to classroom-based teaching, with
differences
 time management, creation of materials,

understanding current tec...
Online teaching is more work
 CDLI class size limit (official & unofficial)
 asynchronous instruction in particular

Lac...
Critical to the success of students
 research has shown the presence of active facilitators increase

student performance...
Support for the facilitator
 the allocation of one teaching per school for

each 175 students to support the delivery of
...
Online
Course
Design

7 principles of
effective
online course
content for
adolescent
learners

Barbour
(2005;
2007)
Online...
Lack of professional development
 less than 40% of online teachers reported to

receiving any professional development be...
Director of Doctoral Studies
Sacred Heart University, USA

mkbarbour@gmail.com
http://www.michaelbarbour.com
http://virtua...
iNACOL Southeastern Cmte (November 2013) - What Do We Really Know? What Does The Research Say About K-12 Online Learning?
iNACOL Southeastern Cmte (November 2013) - What Do We Really Know? What Does The Research Say About K-12 Online Learning?
iNACOL Southeastern Cmte (November 2013) - What Do We Really Know? What Does The Research Say About K-12 Online Learning?
iNACOL Southeastern Cmte (November 2013) - What Do We Really Know? What Does The Research Say About K-12 Online Learning?
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iNACOL Southeastern Cmte (November 2013) - What Do We Really Know? What Does The Research Say About K-12 Online Learning?

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Barbour, M. K. (2013, November). What do we really know? What does the research say about K-12 online learning? A webinar presentation to the south-eastern committee of the International Association for K-12 Online Learning.

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iNACOL Southeastern Cmte (November 2013) - What Do We Really Know? What Does The Research Say About K-12 Online Learning?

  1. 1. Michael Barbour Sacred Heart University
  2. 2. • “based upon the personal experiences of those involved in the practice of virtual schooling” (Cavanaugh et al., 2009) • described the literature as generally falling into one of two general categories: the potential benefits of and challenges facing K-12 online learning (Barbour & Reeves, 2009)
  3. 3. • “a paucity of research exists when examining high school students enrolled in virtual schools, and the research base is smaller still when the population of students is further narrowed to the elementary grades” (Rice, 2006)
  4. 4. • “indicative of the foundational descriptive work that often precedes experimentation in any scientific field. In other words, it is important to know how students in virtual school engage in their learning in this environment prior to conducting any rigorous examination of virtual schooling.” (Cavanaugh et al., 2009)
  5. 5. Comparisons of student performance based upon delivery model (i.e., classroom vs. online) 2. Studies examining the qualities and characteristics of the teaching/learning experience 1.  characteristics of  supports provided to  issues related to isolation of online learners (Rice, 2006) 1 2 Effectiveness of virtual schooling Student readiness and retention issues (Cavanaugh et al., 2009)
  6. 6. Bigbie & over half of students who completed FLVS courses McCarroll (2000) scored an A in their course & only 7% received a failing grade Barker & Wendel students in the six virtual schools in three different (2001) provinces performed no worse than the students from the three conventional schools Cavanaugh et al. FLVS students performed better on a non-mandatory (2005) assessment tool than students from the traditional classroom McLeod et al. FLVS students performed better on an algebraic (2005) assessment than their classroom counterparts Barbour & little difference in the overall performance of students Mulcahy (2008, based upon delivery model 2009)
  7. 7. Ballas & Belyk (2000) Bigbie & McCarroll (2000) Cavanaugh et al. (2005) McLeod et al. (2005) participation rate in the assessment among virtual students ranged from 65% to 75% compared to 90% to 96% for the classroombased students between 25% and 50% of students had dropped out of their FLVS courses over the previous twoyear period speculated that the virtual school students who did take the assessment may have been more academically motivated and naturally higher achieving students results of the student performance were due to the high dropout rate in virtual school courses
  8. 8. Haughey & Muirhead (1999) preferred characteristics include the highly motivated, self-directed, self-disciplined, independent learner who could read and write well, and who also had a strong interest in or ability with technology Roblyer & Elbaum only students with a high need to control and structure (2000) their own learning may choose distance formats freely Clark et al. (2002) IVHS students were highly motivated, high achieving, self-directed and/or who liked to work independently Mills (2003) Watkins (2005) typical online student was an A or B student 45% of the students who participated in e-learning opportunities in Michigan were either advanced placement or academically advanced students
  9. 9. • “Online student scores in math, reading, and writing have been lower than scores for students statewide over the last three years.” (Colorado, 2006) • “Virtual charter school pupils’ median scores on the mathematics section of the Wisconsin Knowledge and Concepts Examination were almost always lower than statewide medians during the 2005-06 and 2006-07 school years.” (Wisconsin, 2010) • “Half of the online students wind up leaving within a year. When they do, they’re often further behind academically then when they started.” (Colorado, 2011)
  10. 10. • “Compared with all students statewide, full-time online students had significantly lower proficiency rates on the math MCA-II but similar proficiency rates in reading.” (Minnesota, 2011) • “nearly nine of every 10 students enrolled in at least one statewide online course, all had graduation rates and AIMS math passing rates below the state average” (Arizona, 2011) • “…students at K12 Inc., the nation’s largest virtual school company, are falling further behind in reading and math scores than students in brick-and-mortar schools.” (Miron & Urschel, 2012)
  11. 11. Miron, G. & Urschel, J. (2012). Understanding and improving full-time virtual schools. Denver, CO: National Education Policy Center. • “K12 Inc. virtual schools enroll approximately the same percentages of black students but substantially more white students and fewer Hispanic students relative to public schools in the states in which the company operates” • “39.9% of K12 students qualify for free or reduced lunch, compared with 47.2% for the same-state comparison group.” • “K12 virtual schools enroll a slightly smaller proportion of students with disabilities than schools in their states and in the nation as a whole (9.4% for K12 schools, 11.5% for same-state comparisons, and 13.1% in the nation).” • “Students classified as English language learners are significantly underrepresented in K12 schools; on average the K12 schools enroll 0.3% ELL students compared with 13.8% in the same-state comparison group and 9.6% in the nation.”
  12. 12. Virtual School Designer: Course Development  design instructional materials  works in team with teachers and a virtual school to construct the online course, etc. Virtual School Teacher: Pedagogy & Class Management  presents activities, manages pacing, rigor, etc.  interacts with students and their facilitators  undertakes assessment, grading, etc. Virtual School Site Facilitator: Mentoring & Advocating  local mentor and advocate for student(s)  proctors & records grades, etc. Davis (2007)
  13. 13. Developed by team on behalf of the online program  a team of teachers, multimedia specialists, instructional designers  work for hire/contract Developed by the online teacher  hired to teach a non-existent course  course developed throughout semester
  14. 14. Copyright  who owns the content?  what happens if teacher leaves? Expertise/Training  “more than 31% of teachers reported receiving no training in online lesson design” (Rice & Dawley,2007, p. 26)  to create one hour of training it took 43 hours for instructor-led, 79 hours for basic e-learning, 184 hours for interactive e-learning, and 490 hours for advanced e-learning (Chapman Alliance, 2010) Lack of Research to Guide Practice  studies have focused on unreliable and invalid measures  primary data has been teacher and developer perceptions  no open access research-based standards
  15. 15. Similar to classroom-based teaching, with differences  time management, creation of materials, understanding current technology and working with a student one-on-one (Kearsley & Blomeyer, 2004)  work differently to have positive communication and assessments, using non-verbal communication, time is needed for teachers to become comfortable with technology, shift occurring from teacher-centered to studentcentered learning (Easton, 2003)
  16. 16. Online teaching is more work  CDLI class size limit (official & unofficial)  asynchronous instruction in particular Lack of reliable and valid empirical research  most research is based on teacher perceptions What is known about teacher training  learn online in order to teach online  works in team with teachers and a virtual school to construct the online course, etc.
  17. 17. Critical to the success of students  research has shown the presence of active facilitators increase student performance (Roblyer, Freeman, Stabler, & Schneidmiller, 2007)  a trained facilitator also has a positive impact on student performance (UNC-Chapel Hill) Facilitator should  monitor student activities  support students soft learning skills Facilitator should not  provide regular tutoring  provide significant or substantial technical assistance
  18. 18. Support for the facilitator  the allocation of one teaching per school for each 175 students to support the delivery of CDLI courses (Shortall & Greene-Fraize, 2007)  schools that had students participating in supplemental distributed learning were eligible to receive 0.125 of a full-time equivalent for the local or school-based support of their students engaged in distributed learning (Barbour, 2011)
  19. 19. Online Course Design 7 principles of effective online course content for adolescent learners Barbour (2005; 2007) Online 37 best Teaching practices in asynchronous DiPietro online et al. teaching (2008) Interviews with teachers and course developers at a single virtual school, with no verification of whether the interviewees’ perceptions were actually effective or any student input at all for that matter. Interviews with teachers at a single virtual school selected by the virtual school itself. Their teachers’ beliefs were not validated through observation of the teaching or student performance.
  20. 20. Lack of professional development  less than 40% of online teachers reported to receiving any professional development before they began teaching online (Rice & Dawley, 2007) Lack of teacher preparation programs  less than 2% of universities in the United States provided any systematic training in their preservice or in-service teacher education programs (Kennedy & Archambault, 2012)
  21. 21. Director of Doctoral Studies Sacred Heart University, USA mkbarbour@gmail.com http://www.michaelbarbour.com http://virtualschooling.wordpress.com

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