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  Partner: UNT Libraries
 Department: Department of Learning Technologies
 Collection: UNT Theses and Dissertations
Retention: Course Completion Rates in Online Distance Learning

Retention: Course Completion Rates in Online Distance Learning

Date: December 2015
Creator: Phillips, Alana S.
Description: Online courses in higher education have a reputation for having a lower course completion or retention rate than face-to-face courses. Much of this reputation is based upon anecdotal evidence, is outdated, or is on a small scale, such as a comparison of individual courses or programs of instruction. A causal-comparative analysis was conducted among 11 large, high research public universities. The universities were compared to each other to determine if differences existed between online and face-to-face course completion; undergraduate and graduation online course completion was analyzed for differences as well. The findings suggested the magnitude of the differences between online and face-to-face completions rates was small or negligible. The area which showed a higher magnitude of difference was in the comparison between undergraduate and graduate online course completion; the practical significance could be worth considering for educational purposes.
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Exploring Teachers’ Constructivist Beliefs Using Talis 2013: Approaches to Training and Development

Exploring Teachers’ Constructivist Beliefs Using Talis 2013: Approaches to Training and Development

Date: August 2015
Creator: Angnakoon, Putthachat
Description: The changing landscape of demographics, technology, and diversity in the learning environment is challenging schools around the world to rethink their approaches to the implementation of high-quality teaching practices. Classroom practices are becoming more complex because educators have to ensure that their students are well-equipped with 21st century skills (e.g., Darling-Hammond, 2010; Dede, 2010; Griffin, McGaw, & Care, 2012). Educators, curriculum developers, and school administrators need to be more than experts in pedagogy. They are now required to keep up with current ideas, innovative instructional practices, and the results of a variety of educational reform efforts. Believing that teachers’ beliefs are the most important psychological construct with regard to instructional practices (Pajares, 1992) and that teachers’ beliefs are related to their choice of classroom practices and, ultimately, the students’ performance (Bybee, Taylor, Gardner, Van Scotter, Powell, Westbrook, & Landes, 2006; Staub & Stern, 2002), the author of this study utilizes the international data set of the Teaching and Learning International Study (TALIS) 2013 to examine the associations between teachers’ constructivist beliefs, their self-efficacy beliefs, professional activities, and the school principals’ instructional leadership as related to lower secondary school teachers and principals in South Korea, Finland, and Mexico. These three countries ...
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Understanding 3-D Spaces Through Game-based Learning: a Case Study of Knowledge Acquisition Through Problem-based Learning in Minecraft

Understanding 3-D Spaces Through Game-based Learning: a Case Study of Knowledge Acquisition Through Problem-based Learning in Minecraft

Date: August 2015
Creator: Roberts-Woychesin, Jami
Description: The primary purpose in this case study was to explore the use of three-dimensional virtual spaces via the use of the game Minecraft as a teaching tool. The case study examined the effectiveness, self-efficacy, and social interaction of students when using such a tool in the teaching and learning process. The research analyzed knowledge acquisition through various deliverables such as benchmark pre and post exams, student discourse, and tangible objects created from the lessons by the students. Students were enrolled and participated in a summer camp offered from Arts and Technology Institute in North Texas. The camp utilized Minecraft to teach architecture types. Students learned about pyramids (Egyptian and Aztec), Roman/Greek architecture, Gothic architecture, and Post-Modern Architecture. Each day students were exposed to a different them of architecture and were tasked with building a world that was in the theme of an assigned type of architecture. Fifty-nine school age students ranging in ages from eight to twelve years old participated fully in the study. The students were not grouped by age, but instead self-selected partners with which to work during the course of their creations. Results show that students who participated in the Minecraft driven course were highly engaged and ...
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Testing the Psychometric Properties of the Online Student Connectedness Survey

Testing the Psychometric Properties of the Online Student Connectedness Survey

Date: August 2015
Creator: Zimmerman, Tekeisha
Description: The Online Student Connectedness Survey (OSCS) was introduced to the academic community in 2012 as an instrument designed to measure feelings of connectedness between students participating in online degree and certification programs. The purpose of this study was to examine data from the instrument for initial evidence of validity and reliability and to establish a nomological network between the OSCS and similar instruments utilized in the field. The study utilized sequential exploratory factor analysis- confirmatory factor analysis (EFA-CFA) and correlational analysis to assess results of the data. Students enrolled in online courses at higher education institutions located in the United States served as the sample for this study. Three instruments were used during the study. The OSCS was administered first so that the factor structure could be examined for factor validity. Once confirmed, the Classroom Community Scale (CCS) and the Community of Inquiry Scale (COI) served as the instruments to examine nomological validity through correlational analysis of data.This study provided evidence of factor validity and reliability for data from the OSCS. After the initial EFA-CFA, the four-factor structure held, and 16 of the 25 original items remained for nomological testing. Statistically significant correlations were demonstrated between factors contained in the ...
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The Implementation of a Confidence-based Assessment Tool Within an Aviation Training Program

The Implementation of a Confidence-based Assessment Tool Within an Aviation Training Program

Date: August 2015
Creator: Novacek, Paul F.
Description: Traditional use of the multiple-choice question rewards a student for guessing. This technique encourages rote memorization of questions to pass a lengthy exam, and does not promote comprehensive understanding or subject correlation. This begs the question; do we really want question memorizers to operate the machinery of our industrialized society? In an effort to identify guessing on answers during an exam within a safety-critical aviation pilot training course, a qualitative research study was undertaken that introduced a confidence-based element to the end-of-ground-school exam followed by flight simulator sessions. The research goals were twofold, to clearly identify correct guesses and also provide an evidence-based snapshot of aircraft systems knowledge to be used as a formative study aid for the remainder of the course. Pilot and instructor interviews were conducted to gather perceptions and opinions about the effectiveness of the confidence-based assessment tool. The finding of overall positive interview comments confirmed that the pilots and flight instructors successfully used the confidence-based assessments as intended to identify weak knowledge areas and as aids, or plans, for their remaining study time. The study found that if properly trained and administered—especially through a computer-based medium—a robust confidence-based assessment tool would be minimally-burdensome while offering worthwhile ...
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A Construct Validity Analysis of the Work Perceptions Profile Data

A Construct Validity Analysis of the Work Perceptions Profile Data

Date: May 2015
Creator: Frear, Susan W.
Description: As work environments become more complex and demanding, organizations are becoming more interested in measuring the impact of their human resource development programs and initiatives. With this increased attention on data and measurement, human resource professionals have been encouraged to utilize data collection and data analysis techniques to make more objective and rationale human capital decisions and to verify business impact. As a result, the human resource profession has seen a significant increase in the use of surveys to measure anything from training effectiveness to the efficacy of recruitment procedures. The increase in the use of survey instruments requires that more focused attention is placed on the reliability and validity of data from any instrument used to make important human resource and business decisions. One instrument that is currently being used to measure career plateaus and job fit is the Work Perceptions Profile. The purpose of this research study was to conduct a construct validity analysis of the Work Perceptions Profile data and to determine the factor structure of data from its items. The data in this analysis supported a two-factor model structure with the first factor measuring Work Characteristics and a second factor measuring Performance. The results of this ...
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Exploring the Relationships Between Faculty Beliefs and Technology Preferences

Exploring the Relationships Between Faculty Beliefs and Technology Preferences

Date: May 2015
Creator: Faulkner, Christopher G.
Description: All too often faculty are asked to implement technology into their teaching without the knowledge necessary to use the technology effectively. Due to the evolution of technology in everyday settings, students have come to expect to be engaged through technological means. This often creates undue stress on faculty members. The purpose of this study is to investigate technology integration by exploring the relationships between a faculty member’s technology preferences and educational beliefs. Through a mixed method, this study attempts to address the question of why faculty use the types of technology they do. More importantly, this study investigates if a faculty member’s educational beliefs have any influence on the technology they choose to use. Thirty-two medical, clinical, and healthcare faculty members participated in the study. They responded to a Teaching Perspectives Inventory (TPI) survey and a Technology Preferences survey with open-ended questions. Data analysis revealed multiple statistically significant findings between different beliefs and different types of technology. The results indicated that personal epistemic beliefs influence the types of technology faculty use. The technology choices faculty make are largely related to tools they are comfortable with and ones they believe effectively fit their teaching materials. The study also found statistically significant ...
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Using Myers-Briggs Personality Type Indicators to Predict High School Student Performance in an Educational Video Game

Using Myers-Briggs Personality Type Indicators to Predict High School Student Performance in an Educational Video Game

Date: December 2014
Creator: Rice, John W.
Description: Educational video games have proven a useful tool for educators, offering experiential pedagogy in a variety of fields. Predicting the success of a video game in engaging students and motivating them to work with relevant material is problematic. One approach was attempted through administering the Myers-Briggs Personality Type Indicator to 42 high school students and observing subsequent voluntary performance on a popular mathematics video game throughout one semester. Game dynamics matching certain personality elements of the students generally correlated between learning preferences in the classroom and in the online gaming environment. Students who enjoyed group dynamics in classroom settings likewise indicated enthusiasm for the group dynamics in game play. Those students preferring structured learning environments may prefer less open ended virtual learning gaming environments. Since the game incorporated multiple choice questions and rewarded correct choices made quickly, those students with personality styles in which questions are carefully considered before answering suffered in points scored compared to those used to making fast intuitive choices in exam settings. Additional studies, including those with larger populations and different types of video games, are needed for more definite conclusions.
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Investigating Teachers’ Backgrounds and Instructional Practices to Improve Mathematics Teacher Training Programs

Investigating Teachers’ Backgrounds and Instructional Practices to Improve Mathematics Teacher Training Programs

Date: May 2015
Creator: Chung, Chih-Hung
Description: In recent years, considerable concern has arisen over cross-national student’s math achievement. A number of studies focusing on eighth grade student’s math achievement have been published. However, the most important role we should consider is not only students, but also teachers. A good teaching training program could help teachers improve their teaching expertise and student’s math achievement. Moreover, most studies only focused on explained predictions of the effect between potential factors. Therefore, the purpose of this study is to implement a hierarchical linear model and cluster analysis techniques to re-examine the Trends in International Mathematics and Science Study (TIMSS) 2011 among eighth grade students in the United States (U.S.), South Korea, Singapore, and Taiwan. These techniques were applied to provide a teacher characteristics and student math achievement model and identify a new institutional typology based on the pattern of teacher characteristic types and countries. Based on these patterns and model, this study presented the findings, as well as suggestions for improving educational policies and teaching training program in, South Korea, Singapore, Taiwan, and the U.S.
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Tenured/tenure-track Faculty Diversity: Does Search Committee Training Make a Difference?

Tenured/tenure-track Faculty Diversity: Does Search Committee Training Make a Difference?

Date: August 2014
Creator: Philpot, Denise R.
Description: Diversity impacts organizations, both internally and externally. Responses to changes in demographics come from legal and moral imperatives. As a reflection of the changes in the population demographics in the United States, universities have seen and sought increased diversity in their student enrollment. Many institutions have purposeful plans to increase representation of under-represented groups as well as those students from low-income families. Some schools also recognize the importance of having diversity represented within their staff and faculty positions as a way of creating a supportive environment that also promotes diversity of thought. As schools increase the diversity of their student population, at what level are they increasing diversity among their tenured and tenure-track faculty? The purpose of this study is to examine the impact on full-time tenured/tenure-track faculty diversity compared to enrolled student diversity at institutions that promote, require, or provide access to training for faculty search committees, including diversity/cultural awareness, legal compliance, and process training, and those institutions that do not appear to have any training requirement as documented on their websites. Only tenured/tenure-track faculty were considered as they are the permanent teaching/research positions and generally represent the core faculty of every department at a university.
Contributing Partner: UNT Libraries
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