Virtual School Meanderings

January 14, 2019

Article Notice – Accessibility That Supports Literacy: Virtual School Course Design Teams’ Instructional Planning For Students With Disabilities

This was the third of the K-12 distance, online, and/or blended learning articles I references in Friday’s New Issue of Online Learning Journal Published entry.

Mary Frances Rice

 

Abstract

As more students with disabilities in K-12 settings enroll in online courses, virtual schools and programs are working make courses accessible through stronger course design. When course designers approach the issue of accessibility, they must comply with legal requirements and mitigate the challenges many students with disabilities face for literacy and learning. These challenges include less well-developed content vocabulary and background knowledge, as well as inefficient skills and strategies for engaging with and comprehending online text. This study describes phenomenological research where course designers worked to meet accessibility standards and promote literacies online for all students, especially students with disabilities. Four strategies for promoting accessibility emerged as findings: (1) composing clear articulations of learning outcomes; (2) promoting personalized and contextualized learning, and; (3) planning for visual and audio representation of concepts. However, course designers may need additional support for addressing the interplay between literacies that promote access and accessibility features that promote literacies.

Keywords

K12 online course design, collaborative online course design, instructional design for students with disabilities, course design literacies, accessibility in online courses

Full Text:

PDF

References

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DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.24059/olj.v22i4.1508

Article Notice – Quiet Participation: Investigating Non-Posting Activities In Online Learning

This was the second of the K-12 distance, online, and/or blended learning articles I references in Friday’s New Issue of Online Learning Journal Published entry.

Lesley Wilton

 

Abstract

Despite the growth in online learning offerings in K-12 and higher education, limited research has been undertaken to better understand less visible online learning activities. Reading and rereading are not typically valued as important indicators of learning since number or frequency of entries, words or key phrases are usually visible and easily tracked. This paper addresses reading, writing and revisiting behaviours by cluster groups in eight online courses, and looks for patterns related to rereading. Participant perceptions of the value of rereading entries in online learning are discussed. The findings highlight the importance of a more nuanced understanding of the different roles reading and rereading play in online learning discussions. This research informs our understanding of the importance of non-posting behaviors to student learning. Instructionally, these results may encourage valuing of different “paths” to online learning success beyond the criterion of written entries.

Despite the growth in online learning offerings in K-12 and higher education, limited research has been undertaken to better understand less visible online learning activities. Reading and rereading are not typically valued as important indicators of learning since number or frequency of entries, words or key phrases are usually visible and easily tracked. This paper addresses reading, writing and revisiting behaviours by cluster groups in eight online courses, and looks for patterns related to rereading. Participant perceptions of the value of rereading entries in online learning are discussed. The findings highlight the importance of a more nuanced understanding of the different roles reading and rereading play in online learning discussions. This research informs our understanding of the importance of non-posting behaviors to student learning. Instructionally, these results may encourage valuing of different “paths” to online learning success beyond the criterion of written entries.

Keywords

Online learning discussions, rereading, revisiting, non-posting participation

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References

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DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.24059/olj.v22i4.1518

Article Notice – Exploring The Impact Of Small-Group Synchronous Discourse Sessions In Online Math Learning

This was the first of the K-12 distance, online, and/or blended learning articles I references in Friday’s New Issue of Online Learning Journal Published entry.

Jinnie Choi, Alyssa Walters

 

Abstract

Students in a fully-online learning environment have limited access to opportunities to talk about math problem solving. While discourse is a promising pedagogical model, less is known about how it translates to online math learning. We analyzed online platform data from two fully-online virtual elementary schools in the United States to address the following research questions: (a) Is participating in math discourse about reasoning and problem-solving related to students’ confidence, self-efficacy toward math, and math mindset in an online learning environment? (b) Is participation in math discourse related to math performance? The results showed that (a) repeated participation in the discourse sessions in a course was not directly related with changes in confidence, self-efficacy toward math, and math mindset, and (b) higher numbers of sessions that students participated in was associated with higher performance in final math course score and state assessment results, after controlling for prior performance and confidence, self-efficacy and mindset scores.

Keywords

math discourse; mathematics instruction; online learning

Full Text:

PDF

References

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DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.24059/olj.v22i4.1511

January 11, 2019

New Issue of Online Learning Journal Published

This showed up in my inbox in the past day or so.  Note that there are a couple of K-12 distance, online, and/or blended learning articles below.

Featuring pedagogical strategies, student outcomes, student behavior, and course instructional design principles. Email not displaying correctly?
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Issue 22-4 of Online Learning Journal

Dear OLC Colleague,

We recently published Issue 22:4 of Online Learning Journal (OLJ). Since 2016, OLJ has dedicated a special issue to publish the year’s best research from the American Educational Research Association’s Online Teaching and Learning Special Interest Group (AERA-OTL SIG). This year’s special issue presents a diverse selection of high-quality research on a broad range of topics using an array of research methods. The articles in this issue are arranged according to four major categories related to online learning: pedagogical strategies, student outcomes, student behavior, and course instructional design principles.

This issue of Online Learning also contains seven papers from our regular submission process. The studies in this section examine student, faculty, and administrative issues in online learning. The initial set of papers look at preparing and engaging learners in online study. The second group of papers analyze questions related to faculty development. The final paper in this section presents a national study of online learning leaders.

We invite you to read and share this issue with colleagues and to consider submitting your original work to Online Learning.

Best,


Dr. Peter Shea
EDITOR-IN-CHIEF
Online Learning Journal (OLJ)
Associate Provost for Online Learning &
Associate Professor, Educational Theory and Practice and Informatics

University at Albany, State University of New York

Copyright © 2019, All rights reserved.

Our mailing address is:

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December 11, 2018

Article Notice – Exploring The Impact Of Small-Group Synchronous Discourse Sessions In Online Math Learning

I also noticed that this K-12 online learning article was in the same issue.

Jinnie Choi, Alyssa Walters

Abstract

Students in a fully-online learning environment have limited access to opportunities to talk about math problem solving. While discourse is a promising pedagogical model, less is known about how it translates to online math learning. We analyzed online platform data from two fully-online virtual elementary schools in the United States to address the following research questions: (a) Is participating in math discourse about reasoning and problem-solving related to students’ confidence, self-efficacy toward math, and math mindset in an online learning environment? (b) Is participation in math discourse related to math performance? The results showed that (a) repeated participation in the discourse sessions in a course was not directly related with changes in confidence, self-efficacy toward math, and math mindset, and (b) higher numbers of sessions that students participated in was associated with higher performance in final math course score and state assessment results, after controlling for prior performance and confidence, self-efficacy and mindset scores.

Keywords

math discourse; mathematics instruction; online learning

Full Text:

PDF

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