DESIGNING DUAL ENROLLMENT ONLINE COURSES FOR STUDENTS WHO LEARN DIFFERENTLY

Concurrent Session 1

Session Materials

Brief Abstract

Online dual enrollment has the potential to reach many at-risk students and gives them an opportunity to self-determine whether post-secondary education is the right option. This conversation focuses on our approach to the design and delivery of online dual enrollment courses to students who learn differently (LD).

Presenters

Dr. Marie-Pierre Huguet is the director of Online Learning at Landmark College. She earned her Ph.D. in Curriculum and Instruction from the University at Albany in New York. Her research is focused on constructivist instructional design, online and blended learning, and integration of technology in the classroom.

Extended Abstract

Online dual enrollment has the potential to reach many at-risk students and gives them an opportunity to self-determine whether post-secondary education is the right option. This conversation focuses on our approach to the design and delivery of online dual enrollment courses to students who learn differently (LD).

Models of Dual Enrollment

In our conversation, we will first look at the various formats dual enrollment courses take, depending on course location, teacher credentials, student body composition, participant selectivity and delivery modes. We will discuss the three models cited by the Hanover Report (2014), how they are implemented, and what their strengths and challenges might be.

1. Students earn either high school or college credit through coursework, but do not earn both for a given course.

2. Students earn both high school and college credit for the same course. 

3. Students earn college credit by taking college-credit bearing courses taught by college approved high school teachers on the high school campus. This is also called Concurrent Enrollment.

Dual Enrollment and At-Risk Students

We will then discuss the benefits and considerations of dual enrollment for at-risk students. These include:

  • preparing students for effective transition to higher education
  • providing early support for at-risk students before they enter college
  • giving students an opportunity for accelerated learning.

At-Risk Students and Online Dual Enrollment

The Hanover Research report (2013, p.4) also noted that “[r]esearch demonstrates, however, that at-risk students can benefit from online and flexible learning options. Some early colleges take advantage of this and offer all or some courses online, but these remain the minority”. Online dual enrollment has the potential to reach many at-risk students and gives them an opportunity to self-determine whether postsecondary education is the right option. Given that at-risk students drop out of college at rates significantly higher than their non-risk peers (Tyson, 2014), dual enrollment offers one of the best return on investment for at-risk students.

A Hybrid Model of Dual Enrollment for Students with LD

We will share our own experience, discuss the strengths and challenges of our hybrid model through a shared story telling.

The Landmark College dual enrollment model is characterized by:

•Fully online courses taught by Landmark College faculty who understand executive function and other learning challenges. 

•Close working relationship between the Landmark College faculty and the school liaison. This ensures that the high school students have the requisite executive function support and accessibility for the online learning environment. 

•Synchronous office hours with the Landmark College faculty to orient students to communicating with college faculty and advocating on their own behalf. 

•Small class sizes, with a minimum of five students and a maximum of 12 students. This allows for the customization of the learning environment and make it personally relevant. 

•Full integration of the online content instruction and the college-level study skills and learning strategies. 

Highlighting the Role of the High School Liaison

We will discuss the critical role of the high school liaison and consider other options implemented at other institutions. In our model, the liaison acts as the “external” executive function complement for the student. S/he uses techniques borrowed from non-directive coaching and student centered academic advising, used at Landmark College. Throughout the course delivery, the Landmark College faculty, high school liaison, and Landmark College instructional designer work closely as a triad to set up a hybrid/online learning environment that is unique to this at-risk population.

Conclusion/Takeaway

We will close our conversation with data from our formative and summative evaluations, and leave the participants with a customizable blue print for designing their own dual enrollment online courses for students who learn differently.

References

Banerjee, M. (2016). Dual Enrollment: A Unique Model Supporting High School Students Who Learn Differently. Retrieved from https://www.landmark.edu/research-training/newsletter/dual-enrollment

Berler, N. (2015, August). Online learning efficient but not always effective. Educause Review, Retrieved from: https://er.educause.edu/blogs/2015/8/online-learning-efficient-but-not-a...

Hanover Research (2013). Early college programs for at-risk students. Washington, D.C. 

Hanover Research (2014). Dual enrollment: Models, practices, and trends. Washington, D.C.

Tyson, C. (2014, September). To maximize graduation rates, colleges should focus on middle-range students, research shows. Insider Higher Ed, Retrieved from: https://www.insidehighered.com/news/2014/09/10/maximize-graduation-rates...