Preparing doctoral candidates through a fully remote virtual residency experience
This session describes a virtual residency model to help doctoral students start their research. Participants will learn hybrid strategies to engage students using synchronous and asynchronous techniques. Participants will experience the residency through the lens of a student to develop a researchable topic for their home institution.
This session will focus on a new way to approach the doctorate in the United States, one that proposes to meet the needs of our communities and address some of the long-standing challenges of doctoral education. While there have been steady increases in enrollments and conferrals over the last 20 years, doctoral education has experienced persistent challenges. These challenges include relatively high attrition rates, low graduation rates, limited resources, and a long time to degree completion. In response to these challenges, the university developed a remote virtual residency experience that allows students to complete critical deliverables of their doctoral project using a remote hybrid course model. Participants engage with the new model's history, development, implementation, and outcomes to develop strategies to launch new models at their home institutions.
Background: The Council of Graduate Schools, the American Academy of Education, and the National Science Foundation suggest that while there are some incremental improvements in student outcomes, innovation is needed across doctoral education. Specifically, early development of the research project using innovative curricular models is required to reduce attrition and improve graduation rates. The pandemic has accelerated this change to meet the need for accessible remote delivery models of doctoral education.
Virtual Residency Model: In response to the pandemic, the university shifted from offering a hybrid course experience in which students met in person for a 4-day intensive experience to one that was fully remote. Students participated in both 1-1 and synchronous group sessions with faculty to apply research, critical thinking, and writing skills needed to finalize an appropriate research topic. Teams developed synchronous sessions and other course activities to approximate the engaging real-time interactions experienced through in-person residency without the need for travel or added expense. Session participants learn about the experience of launching a virtual residency experience in which students.
Outcomes: Initial data suggests that the remote hybrid model of virtual residency changed the trend of decreasing course success with a 2.5% improvement quarter over quarter. Additional data will be presented to illustrate the efficacy of the model.
Session Goals: Individuals attending this session will:
1. Learn about strategies to improve doctoral student preparation to complete the degree.
2. Discuss synchronous and asynchronous models to engage students in an online, competency-based course.
3. Share experiences and innovations from their institutions regarding remote synchronous contact with students.
4. Develop a Research Plan to take back to their home institution.
Level of Participation: Participants will engage with the virtual residency model from a student's perspective. Participants will be guided through the experience and develop a researchable topic to return to their home institution. Along the way, participants will share best practices for remote synchronous and asynchronous student engagement.