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Design and Evaluation of Self-paced Online Faculty Development

Melissa Rizzuto (Florida SouthWestern State College & University of Florida, USA)
Session Information
October 16, 2015 - 9:30am
Faculty and Professional Development & Support
Major Emphasis of Presentation: 
Research Study
Institutional Level: 
Multiple Levels
Audience Level: 
Session Type: 
Information Session
Northern Hemisphere E3
Session Duration: 
45 Minutes
Concurrent Session 9

This research study examined the design and evaluation of a self-paced online faculty development course about how to understand, design, and implement rubrics.

Extended Abstract


This presentation shares the results and findings from a doctoral research study about the design and evaluation of self-paced online faculty development conducted at an open-access institution in the Southeastern United States. The researcher is currently a faculty and staff development practitioner serving a diverse audience, including full-time faculty, part-time faculty, and staff on three campuses within a five-county geographic region. Limited physical training space and difficulty scheduling sessions to accommodate varied work schedules prevented the researcher from providing enough opportunities for all faculty to participate in timely instructional/teaching development.

Questions and Methods:

This presentation examines the design and evaluation of a self-paced online faculty development course about rubrics, Rubrics 101. The research questions for this study aligned with Guskey's (2002) critical levels of professional development evaluation and Kirkpatrick's (1996) evaluation model for training programs. The research design applied a combination of these two frameworks to look at faculty reactions to the online course, faculty learning after completing the course, and faculty intentions to modify behavior or use new knowledge and skills in the future. A mixed methods research design was implemented in order apply several evaluation techniques recommended by Guskey (2002) and Kirkpatrick (1996) to the study of the Rubrics 101 course. The study addressed three related research questions:

-What are faculty participants' perceptions of the self-paced online faculty development course? (Level 1 Kirkpatrick, Level 1 Guskey)

-What evidence of learning is available in the assessments used in a self-paced online faculty development course? (Level 2 Kirkpatrick, Level 2 Guskey)

-How do faculty participants intend to incorporate what they learned into their teaching practices after completing a self-paced online faculty development course about an instructional topic? (Level 3 Kirkpatrick, Level 4 Guskey)

The participants were full-time and adjunct faculty who volunteered to enroll in the self-paced online faculty development course, Rubrics 101. Data was collected from multiple sources, including an evaluation questionnaire and online course assessments (self-reflections, a teaching improvement plan, and a rubric artifact). These methods of collecting both qualitative and quantitative data provided triangulation of the findings (Collins, Onwuegbuzie, & Sutton, 2006).


This presentation will share the results from this study, including:

Quantitative Findings
-Descriptive Data
-Satisfaction Data
-Rubric Artifact Scores

Qualitative Themes
-Perceptions of rubrics
-Implementation of Rubrics
-Perceptions of the Rubrics 101 course


The researcher will also present the conclusions and interpretations of the study's findings, including a discussion about the levels of evaluation and the design of self-paced online learning. The findings will be grounded in the literature related to transformative and reflective learning, as well as the recommended types of interaction needed for faculty success. The researcher will also share future plans for using the results of this study to develop a model for additional self-paced online faculty development courses about other topics.

Presentation Materials:

-View the features of the self-paced online course (Rubrics 101) in Canvas

Audience Engagement:

Those who attend this session will collaborate with others by participating in short discussion. Attendees will first reflect on the types of problems and gaps in faculty development that exist at their own institution before sharing and considering new opportunities with other attendees to determine if online self-paced options would be beneficial to them. Electronic polling may also be utilized. Electronic polling may also be utilized throughout the session.


Collins, K., Onwuegbuzie, A., & Sutton, I. (2006). A model for incorporating the rationale and purpose for conducting mixed-method research in special education and beyond. Learning Disabilities: A Contemporary Journal, 4(1), 67-100.

Guskey, T. R. (2002). Does it make a difference? Evaluating professional development. Educational Leadership, 59(6), 45-51.

Kirkpatrick, D. (1996). Great ideas revisited: Revisiting Kirkpatrick's four-level model. Training & Development, 50(1), 54-59.

Lead Presenter

Melissa Rizzuto is currently the Director of Faculty Development and Training for Florida SouthWestern State College. She earned her bachelor's degree in Telecommunications and Mass Media from Temple University and her master's degree in Communications from Florida State University. She is currently pursuing her doctorate in Education with a concentration in Educational Technology at the University of Florida.

Melissa has over ten years of experience in the field of training and development. She has worked in corporate training departments for Comcast Spotlight and Vanguard and then as an instructional designer for the School of Education at Drexel University. She is currently the VP of Technology for the Southwest Florida chapter of the Association for Talent Development (ATD).