Volume 10, Issue 4 - December 2006

The Development of a Remote Laboratory for Internet-Based Engineering Education

Ahmed Chiheb Ammari, Institut National des Sciences Appliquées et de Technologie (INSAT), Unité de Recherche en Matériaux Mesures et Applications (MMA)
Jaleleddine Ben Hadj Slama, Institut National des Sciences Appliquées et de Technologie (INSAT), Laboratoire des Systèmes Électriques (LSE), École Nationale d’Ingénieurs de Tunis (ENIT)

The development of feasible and cost-effective remote engineering and science laboratories is one of the most important problems facing the progress of online technical education. In this paper, we describe the development of a complete remote laboratory for the instruction of control engineering. Equipped with common industrial sensors and actuators,...

Creating Effective Online Discussions: Optimal Instructor and Student Roles

Marcia Dixson, Ph.D., Indiana University-Purdue University at Fort Wayne
Michelle Kuhlhorst, M.A., Indiana University-Purdue University at Fort Wayne
Amber Reiff, M.A., Indiana University-Purdue University at Fort Wayne

Teaching online courses is unexplored territory for many instructors. Understanding how to use the powerful learning techniques involved in cooperative group learning in an online context is imperative. This paper is a first attempt to explore the dynamics of learning groups in the context of online discussion forums. Given the...

Building Understanding in Asynchronous Discussions: Examining Types of Online Discourse

Seungyeon Han, Ph.D., Hanyang Cyber University, Seoul, Korea
Janette R. Hill, Ph.D., Instructional Technology, Instructional Technology, University of Georgia

This article describes a study exploring how students' learning is reflected in asynchronous online discussion. The study examined how online discourse contributes to the learning process. In examining online group discussions using discourse analysis, five different types of discourse were identified: goal setting, reflection, connection, original reformulation, and re-direction. With...

Cultivating Voluntary Online Learning Communities in Blended Environments

Robert Heckman, Syracuse University
Hala Annabi, University of Washington

In this paper we argue for the possibility of using asynchronous technology to create a continuous, voluntary learning community in face-to-face courses. We discuss the theoretical concepts and values that are the foundation of such a community, describe some of the activities that take place there, and present principles of...

The Method (and Madness) of Evaluating Online Discussions

Katrina A. Meyer, Ph.D., The University of Memphis

In addressing how to evaluate online discussions, this paper will describe several concepts, tools, or frameworks that have been used in evaluations and discuss differences in approach based on instructor purpose, be it research, assessment, or learning. Then several common problems are described, including use of content analysis, identification of...

Why They Stayed: Near-Perfect Retention in an Online Certification Program in Library Media

Dr. Katrina A. Meyer, The University of Memphis
Dr. Janis Bruwelheide, Montana State University
Russell Poulin, Western Cooperative for Educational Telecommunications

This paper focuses on an assessment of an online certification program in K-12 library media which has a near-perfect record of retaining students. Students and graduates of the program were asked to identify reasons for enrolling (and staying enrolled) in the program as well as functions that faculty performed well....

An Online Discussion for Supporting Students in Preparation for a Test

Y. Steimberg, Tel-Aviv University
J. Ram, Tel-Aviv University
R. Nachmia, Tel-Aviv University
A. Eshel, Tel-Aviv University

This research examines classroom-based student participation in online discussion groups while preparing for a test, as well as the relation between the type of participation and student achievement. The online discussion groups were set up towards particular tests in a large-scale course, Introduction to Ecology, during the academic years of...

The Changing Role of Faculty and Online Education

Murray Turoff, Information Systems Department, New Jersey Institute of Technology

Environmental forces influencing the future of higher education in the U.S. threaten to undermine the desirable role of faculty as arbiters of academic quality. For online learning to live up to its potential, institutional policies can return academic authority to faculty over degree programs in all modes and support the...

How Blended Learning Can Support a Faculty Development Community of Inquiry

Norman Vaughan, University of Calgary
D. Randy Garrison, University of Calgary

This study focuses on understanding the social and teaching presence required to create a blended faculty development community of inquiry. Garrison, Anderson and Archer's community of inquiry framework was used to analyze transcripts from the face-to-face and online sessions of a faculty learning community focused on blended learning course redesign....

Distance Education Communications: The Social presence and Media Richness of Instant Messaging

Stephen J. Kuyath, The William States Lee College of Engineering, University of North Carolina at Charlotte
Susan J. Winter, The Belk College of Business Administration, University of North Carolina at Charlotte

Instant messaging (IM) is changing the way we communicate with each other and may prove to be a more effective communication tool for distance learning environments than the more commonly used discussion groups and email. Media richness and social presence theories are described and young adults' perception of IM's richness...