Distance Ed. students beat their B&M counterparts across the board, Says Dep. Of Ed.

Discussion in 'Baptist Colleges / Seminaries' started by Havensdad, Jun 30, 2009.

  1. Havensdad

    Havensdad
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    Thought this was interesting. According to a Meta analysis of 51 separate studies, done by the Department of Education, Online students greatly outperform their Brick and mortar, traditional counterparts.

    http://www.insidehighered.com/news/2009/06/29/online
     
  2. gb93433

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    I will be using a blended situation next semester to ensure that students read the material. They will not be able to skip any quizzes until they complete the previous quizzes and receive a score.

    I have not had one student who did an online prerequisite course who has come to my classes as well prepared as those who have had me in class for the prerequisite classes. We cover the same textbook but the in class discussion and questions are far more extensive than what someone who is inexperienced would not think to ask.

    That article did nothing to qualify their story. I did not see any statistics or results. Imagine teaching gymnastics or football online.

    I do agree with their statement, "Further, those who took "blended" courses -- those that combine elements of online learning and face-to-face instruction -- appeared to do best of all."

    One of the qualities of online education is the fact that material can be reviewed many times. That can be good and bad. The bad part van be how that will that translate to an employer who will tell the person just once? I find it amazing how many times I am asked simple questions that are answered in the text and from the syllabus by younger students through email.

    Don't always be so quick to accept anything the DOE does because they have an agenda. No child left behind was a flop. Every educator is being pushed to provide online courses. There is a shortage of teachers and professors. In my field alone two years ago there were 80 professors needed across the nation. I doubt there were ten getting a doctorate. It is just a matter of musical chairs. Some universities are just getting warm bodies to teach.
     
    #2 gb93433, Jun 30, 2009
    Last edited by a moderator: Jun 30, 2009
  3. Havensdad

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    Interesting. Might I ask, where do you teach?
     
  4. Martin

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    ==Using both Blackboard and Moodle it is possible to set the course up where students cannot go on to the next assignment until they have taken a test/quiz or answered certain questions. Those assignments can be timed in order to make sure that students do not spend undo amounts of time looking up answers.

    ==That is far too subjective to base anything on. First, how is it you know that a student took a prerequisite course online and not oncampus? Second, you don't know that the online learning environment is the reason they are unprepared. It could be that, in your subject, the better students are staying away from the online offerings. Third, and I really hate to say this, but it also depends upon the instructor who created the online course. Did he/she put equal amounts of time, energy, thought, and creativity into the course? Or did they just put something together? While I hate to ask those questions I know, from experience on both sides of the fence, that some college instructors don't put much effort into creating online courses. On the other hand, others put a lot of time and thought into their online courses.

    ==As a college instructor I can tell you that I get just as many "simple questions" oncampus as online. In my experience it depends upon the student. Good students are organized, thoughtful, and work hard regardless of the format. Poor students slack off, cut corners, and cheat regardless of the format.

    ==I am a major supporter of online education in general and at my college. Needless to say that I believe, if the course is created well, it can be just a educational and challenging as oncampus courses. The DOE has nothing to do with my support or willingness to teach online courses. I am supporter of it because it works.

    Let me say that there are certain courses/degrees that cannot be done online. I am not saying that online education works for all programs. However for many programs it works just as well as traditional courses.

    ==I don't know what field you are in, but in the social sciences there is anything but a shortage. In fact there are far more applicants than positions.
     
  5. gb93433

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    I do not use blackboard but I did at another university. At the university where I am we use D2L out of Canada. We have unlimited space for whatever we want and it is cheaper too. I am able to do most anything I want in regards to what I post. However I want my students to understand what they need to know so I give tests that require explanation and understanding. I give them real situations from my experiences in the field. For someone to just read a book and give back what the book says is not learning and understanding but rather memorization.


    I see their transcripts. There are also times when I see students I do not recognize and they tell me.

    I spent some time studying at one of the best schools in the world in another related field. That school has never had a problem having its classes completely filled. Online education is out of the question. The founder of the school is now about 82 and cannot see very well. He is now retired. Some of his work is in the Smithsonian. Every student is interviewed before they are accepted. Many students are from other countries. I also went to another school that is the only one of its kind in the world where students come from many other countries and the school does not have any classes which are not completely filled. There is a waiting list to get in. Every student must have a sponsor. Quarterly grades are sent to your sponsor. On the grade report is an attitude and attendance grade. If you ever went below 70% you were given one week to bring it up and if you did not then that was your last week. For some of them it meant that if they did not complete the school they were terminated. That kind of environment creates an atmosphere will students are serious about learning.

    That is a fair statement but the study did not measure that and nor have I. I have heard students tell others that some of the online courses they have taken were easy but they would not do an online course with me. I know they view me as hard but the evaluations I get are good. I see quite a number of students each day. I get little done in my office. Part of the students learning and growing up is humility. They will be going into a field that is always changing. The must be able to ask questions and get answers. I tell them that I probably only know about 5% of the field in which I am in. That always surprises them because they think of it as just knowledge and not the idea that there is so much more than they will ever know. They must learn to work as a team. The business is a team effort.

    I give the students a lot more work and expect more than online courses do. When I lecture I hold the students accountable for the lecture, textbook reading, and anything else that is covered in class. When I quit the business I had been involved in it for 35 years. Most textbooks are written at a very basic level. I have not found a text that takes the students as far as I do in the same class that the text was designed for. I am not sure that I could write a text that would do what I do in class either. The students who graduate are some of the highest paid graduates and can make a lot of money in a few years. Most of them start at what many engineers end at. When the economy went down the attitude among some of the students changed for the better.

    I agree. In my field textbook writers are writing textbooks while those in the field are doing it. So you have a valid point.

    I do not find that to be true because lazy students get behind and see where they are in relation to other students. When they get behind they always get an email from me but most are so embarassed that they stop coming and drop the course.

    I am in support of blended courses but not strictly online education in my field. It is a field that requires problem solving under stress while maintaining your composure and ability to lead. It requires someone who can stand before people and give a clear and concise presentation. In addition to the required class work, tests, small projects, and quizzes my students are required to do a major project and give a presentation on their work. They also turn in the completed written portion. Once they are done with their presentation anyone can ask them questions. The projects have always raised the level of competency in class. Some of the projects would rival any I have seen in the industry. In a real sense it is a competition. Nobody wants to look poor. Publishing companies are already in on the online education game. Some of them have a complete set of tests and study guides. The problem I find is that there are mistakes in everyone of the texts I use. It is because the writers make statements that are not true nor are they a common practice in the field. It is obvious that some are made up out of ignorance. It presents a problem for all of us who have experience. It is much like a history professor who is also a lawyer teaching a course on U.S. history using a book written by someone who knows a little about history.

    I agree. I teach very little from the textbook but the students must have read the text to understand what I present in class. When I was asked to work with the person developing the online courses for what I teach I told him that the text only covers about 1/2 of what I actually teach. He understands the dilemma.

    I am in construction management.To be an effective teacher it requires experience and education. If one does not have experience the students know it immediately. I have some students who are older and have about ten years of work experience but not a completed degree. Those who teach and only have a degree but no work experience, do not have much credibility among the faculty and students.

    Several years ago a publisher basically stole the work I presented to them that they requested for a book. So I am reluctant to put my materials out there for anyone to grab. So I am not exactly favoring online education. They are my materials which I have developed and use in class but not for the public free of charge.
     
  6. TomVols

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    I am not anti DL. However, right off the bat, what is the definition of "performance"? What does it mean when it says that the DL students tend to outperform their RL counterparts? The study further says that the pedagogy is not the issue, but the time dedications of the learners.

    I'm looking forward to reading the entire study. I have some significant questions that I hope will be answered in its pages.

    I am guessing from what I've read in the article that I'll discover in the study something I argue often: education/training/preparation is an individual endeavor. The best individuals have gotten good educations at poor RL and DL places. The best RL/DL places also can produce pathetic students.
     
  7. gb93433

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    The entire report is at http://www.ed.gov/rschstat/eval/tech/evidence-based-practices/finalreport.pdf

    The problem I see is that the "researchers" did not produce original research but looked at existing research. It appears that they did not use the same group for their research.

    I know for a fact that students do not come to class ready to take notes as they would if they knew they were only going to get the information once. A few years I taught a class and posted my lectures online. What I immediately found out was that students learned less and did not pay attention in class. When I stopped posting my lectures online they paid more attention in class and learned more. I have noticed that we have two majors problems going on in our society. We have babies raising babies called parents. The child knows little about failure. Typically their teachers wait on them hand and foot. A few years ago my wife and I looked at out elementary school pictures and our smallest class was 34 students. Several of us saw a picture taken in the early 1900s of a typing class that had over 75 students in it with one teacher. Imagine that today!

    In my field a lot of information is only given once and discussed. If an employee does not takes notes he will not get it again except to receive termination papers. Things are fast moving and a lot of money is involved. They are under time constraints to get the job done.

    We know that among pilots that those who are taught in just a simulator do not perform as well in real life as those who have been taught in a real airplane. It was thought that the simulator could replace the airplane training until they found it that the simulator does a great job at certain training but fails in other areas. When I went through my first check ride in pilot training and the chief flight instructor shut off the engine and cut of the fuel then all of a sudden it was a much different experience than when I trained on the simulator.

    I went to one of the best school in the world in my field and founded by a man who has some of his work in the Smithsonian. Students came from all over the world to study there. What I quickly learned that to succeed it took more than just good hand skills but it also took a sharp mind. Most academic people do not realize that to perform at a high level vocationally it requires one who also performs at a high level intellectually.There was a student who had graduated from MIT, another from Annapolis, and several from Europe. Some of them were tired of the academic work they had been doing and chose to change fields. One I know had worked for NASA in Houston for many years.

    Life is not just about learning what is written on a page. The best people in their field seldom write books to make money and most boks are written toi make money. The best books seldom stay on the market long because of their expense. Publishers do not make money by not selling books.

    Today in the church we have the best resources available for pastors we have ever seen and yet we have an increasing illiteracy of the Bible among those in the congregation. Reading is way down compared to where it once was. No amount of online education reading material will take care of that. We also have an increasing dropout rate in the public schools and increasing online education and internet resources. I am convinced that if I were to start a high quality vocational school with no online education that it would be packed immediately. To think that students who really want a high quality education would not be wiling to pay the price I believe is wrong. The school I went to is full with every seat taken every year. Every years they have about 20 apply for every seat available. A few years ago I talked with someone from there and he told me they do not want any other schools to know because they have something few others have.They accept their students based on very little experience and mostly a proper attitude. Prior to coming there most students have had poor training compared to what they will get. It is attitude that makes the most difference not just the mode of communication. In fact what I was taught there is not communicated in any books. I read some of the same things in books and did not learn much from them. It is much like reading a book to build a house. You can always tell when that happens. The books never tell the whole story. You cannot learn Greek by just reading books on Greek. You must read the Greek texts and know the context to understand Greek writing and the meaning of each word as it is used.
     
  8. gb93433

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    John Maxwel writes in some of his books that strong leaders were led by strong leaders. I think it is the same way with teachers and students. Good students had strong leadership and strong teachers had strong models they still follow.
     

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