Retention: Course Completion Rates in Online Distance Learning

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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 Much of this reputation is based upon anecdotal evidence, is outdated, or is on a small scale, such as a comparison of individual courses or programs of instruction.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 ... continued below

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viii, 118 pages : illustrations (some color)

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Phillips, Alana S. December 2015.

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  • Phillips, Alana S.

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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 Much of this reputation is based upon anecdotal evidence, is outdated, or is on a small scale, such as a comparison of individual courses or programs of instruction.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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viii, 118 pages : illustrations (some color)

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  • December 2015

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  • March 20, 2016, 10:34 a.m.

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  • June 5, 2017, 11:25 a.m.

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Phillips, Alana S. Retention: Course Completion Rates in Online Distance Learning, dissertation, December 2015; Denton, Texas. (digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc822741/: accessed June 18, 2018), University of North Texas Libraries, Digital Library, digital.library.unt.edu; .