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22st Annual OLC International Conference
November 16-18, 2016 | Orlando, Florida | Walt Disney World Swan/Dolphin Resort

OLC Innovate 2016 - Innovations in Blended and Online Learning
April 20-22, 2016 | New Orleans, LA | Sheraton New Orleans Hotel

Methods of Research: Showing Evidence of Student Success in the Blended Learning Environment

David Kephart (University of South Florida, US)
Johanna Dvorak (University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee, US)
Session Information
April 23, 2012 - 5:30pm
Areas of Special Interest: 
Blended Program/Degree
Major Emphasis of Presentation: 
Research Study
Institutional Level: 
Multiple Levels
Audience Level: 
Session Type: 
Poster Session
Executive A-D
Session Duration: 
60 Minutes

We know what we expect: online learning complements the classroom to provide success for our students. How do we organize actual experiments to verify this?

Extended Abstract

A wide variety of research continues to assess the effectiveness and impact of blended learning techniques and their effectiveness has been published. More work is currently underway to verify the effectiveness and institutional imperatives are becoming a factor; all new programs need to justify their existence in terms of real learning success. We consider some actual studies (Stony Brook-SUNY, University of Wisconsin Milwaukee, University of South Florida, and secondary schools) in an attempt to provide pointers and map a way around potential pitfalls for this kind of investigation. We review authentic cases in order to frankly spell out the obstacles actually faced in setting up fruitful research and winning the institutional buy-in necessary to overcome them. We explain the varying levels of integration involved in different pieces of research between online providers and instructional personnel and faculty. We survey the range of results and the power of the results obtained. Since this includes research still in progress, some results we discuss will be partial in character; the majority will be those published in peer-reviewed journals and spoken of at international conferences. This will be of particular interest to institutions looking to address the QEP dimension of blended learning. In the presentation we give participants a window into ongoing blended learning studies and review the tools which allow for a high degree of accuracy in measurement in the blended learning environment. Classical and blended-learning specific factors are considered. Finally, we draw some conclusions about the way in which blended learning is transforming the classroom from the point of view of education research. The main presenter is affiliated with the University of South Florida and published in both education and mathematics journals.

Lead Presenter

Experience with emerging technologies in learning includes ten years of classroom experience at the University of South Florida and five years as the director of NetTutor -- the original Online Tutoring Service. Papers published focus on the effectiveness of online tutoring, developments in language theory, and other topics in discrete mathematics. Received Doctorate from USF in 2005. Currently the director of Academic Research at Link-Systems and adjunct mathematics professor at Link-Systems International, the company that created the NetTutor online tutoring service and the WorldWideWhiteboard educational online conferencing interface.