Virtual School Meanderings

March 4, 2015

SITE 2015 – Lessons Learned from the Development of an Online Teaching Certificate Program for K-12 Teachers

The eleventh session at the 2015 annual conference of the Society for Information Technology and Teacher Education related to K-12 online learning that I am blogging is:

Lessons Learned from the Development of an Online Teaching Certificate Program for K-12 Teachers

  1. Brianne Leigh Moore-Adams, Virginia Commonwealth University , United States
  2. W. Monty Jones, Virginia Commonwealth University, United States

Wednesday, March 4 2:25-2:45 PM in Amazon Q View on map

<Presentation: Paper #44785>
Amazon Q Wednesday, Mar 04 2015 01:45PM-02:45PM
Amy Williamson: Amazon Q, 2015-03-04 13:45:00-2015-03-04 14:45:00

K-12 online learning is a rapidly growing phenomenon in education. While new online K-12 programs are consistently being developed, programs to prepare teachers to effectively teach in these new virtual environments are lagging behind. Research supports the need for teacher education in this area. The purpose of this paper is to briefly examine the existing practices in teacher education for online teaching and to present lessons learned from the development and the first few years of implementation of a post-baccalaureate certificate program in online teaching designed for K-12 teachers.

So this is a third session scheduled while I am appearing on a panel.  So I am unable to blog about it, but I did want to pass along the information in case anyone who was at the session wanted to post their notes in the comments.

SITE 2015 – Factors Influencing Teacher Satisfaction at an Online Charter School

Note that this entry is being posted back-dated because even though I had it
added to my planner in the SITE system, it did not show up so I missed it.

The tenth session at the 2015 annual conference of the Society for Information Technology and Teacher Education related to K-12 online learning that I am blogging is:

Factors Influencing Teacher Satisfaction at an Online Charter School

  1. Jered Borup, George Mason University, United States
  2. Mark Stevens, George Mason University, United States

Wednesday, March 19 2:15-2:45 PM in Grand Ballroom 2 View on map

<Presentation: Paper #41231>
Grand Ballroom 2 Wednesday, Mar 19 2014 01:45PM-02:45PM
Todd Cooper: Grand Ballroom 2, 2014-03-19 13:45:00-2014-03-19 14:45:00

The need for qualified teachers is increasing as teachers from the baby boom generation retire and student population grows. This need is especially heightened for online learning as student online enrollments grows rapidly. Not only does there need to be a greater effort to prepare online teachers, online schools should work to retain the qualified teachers that they have. This case study examined factors that influenced teacher satisfaction at an online charter high school. Analysis of 22 interviews from 11 teachers, identified five primary influences of teacher satisfaction: (1) flexibility, (2) support, (3) communication, (4) control and design, and (5) student performance.

Again, I am appearing on a panel at the same time as this session.  So I am unable to blog about it, but I did want to pass along the information in case anyone who was at the session wanted to post their notes in the comments.

I suspect that Jered’s co-presenter actually did this one – as Jered was on the same panel as me at this time.

SITE 2015 – Online Teaching among World Language Teachers: What Affects Teaching Practices?

The ninth session at the 2015 annual conference of the Society for Information Technology and Teacher Education related to K-12 online learning that I am blogging is:

Online Teaching among World Language Teachers: What Affects Teaching Practices?

  1. Binbin Zheng, Michigan State University, United States
  2. Chin-Hsi Lin, Michigan State University, United States
  3. Nancy Romig, Michigan State University, United States

Wednesday, March 4 1:45-2:15 PM in Conga A View on map

<Presentation: Paper #44256>
Conga A Wednesday, Mar 04 2015 01:45PM-02:45PM
Noga Magen- Nagar: Conga A, 2015-03-04 13:45:00-2015-03-04 14:45:00

Online teaching and learning have become widespread with the emerging of the Internet and new technologies. Online environments, however, create new challenges with regard to what teaching approaches are appropriate, and this is especially the case for language courses. Using survey and interview data, this study examines online language teachers’ teaching practices and perceptions toward online teaching in a virtual high school in the United States. The findings suggest that teachers’ self-efficacy and teaching experiences significantly predict their teaching practices in online language courses; and that Chinese-language teachers exhibit significantly better teaching practices than teachers of other world languages. The study also included an examination of the benefits and challenges of online language teaching from the teachers’ perspective, the results of which could be useful to other online language teachers and researchers, and point the way to improvements in teacher education.

Unfortunately, I am appearing on a panel at the same time as this session.  So I am unable to blog about it, but I did want to pass along the information in case anyone who was at the session wanted to post their notes in the comments.

SITE 2015 – Research Panel on Supporting Teachers and Accessibility in K-12 Online and Blended Learning Contexts

The eighth session, and the first one for Wednesday, at the 2015 annual conference of the Society for Information Technology and Teacher Education related to K-12 online learning that I am blogging is:

Research Panel on Supporting Teachers and Accessibility in K-12 Online and Blended Learning Contexts

  1. Leanna Archambault, Arizona State University, United States
  2. Jean Larson, Arizona State University, United States
  3. Wendy Oliver, Randa Solutions, United States
  4. Anne Roycroft, Florida Virtual School, United States
  5. Ray Rose, Rose & Smith Associates, United States

Wednesday, March 4 11:30 AM-12:30 PM in Amazon A View on map

<Presentation: Paper #44269>
Amazon A Wednesday, Mar 04 2015 11:30AM-12:30PM

This panel will bring together leading experts to explore the research related to K-12 online and blended teachers. Leanna Archambault and Jean Larson will examine perceptions of K-12 online teachers including the career paths that led them to teaching online, the dominant factors that influenced the decision to teach online, and what training or preparation is needed. Wendy Oliver will explore the feasibility of using the same method Tennessee currently uses to gauge teaching quality of traditionally-delivered courses to determine teaching quality in the online environment. Anne Roycroft will focus on the lived experience of full-time high school social studies teachers in the online environment and, in particular, the ways in which they facilitate effective classrooms using project-based lessons in an online environment. and Ray Rose will explore the latest relevant complaint and compliance reports, and case law for ensuring online course accessibility in K-12 online settings.

koko

The first person to present in this panel was Leanna, who was actually presenting some dissertation research of one of her former students.  The study focused on the factors that influenced the reasons for teaching online, which included:

  • employment opportunity (20.5%)
  • new teaching model (19.4%)
  • supplemental income (all of the rest were less than 10%)
  • ability to work from home
  • flexibility
  • retirement
  • student benefits
  • love of technology and teaching
  • frustrations with face-to-face teaching

Leanna summarized these as “economics” and “innovation.”

In terms of the skills that online teachers required, the ones that were listed:

  • strong communication skills (48.6%)
  • organized and prepared (37.8%)
  • and three or four others that I didn’t catch, but these were the two that Leanna stressed

Interestingly, Leanna actually presented some data on how these online teachers were trained, most of the respondents were focused on things there were self taught, self selected, or self found.  Leanna did mention that in these responses, there were some instances of online teaching field experiences were beginning to emerge as themes.

The next panelist was Wendy, who focused on the topic of “Can Value-Added Teaching Effectiveness Models for Traditional Classrooms Measure Online Teaching Quality?”  This study was based on her dissertation research, which was conducted under the guidance of Margaret Roblyer.  The study used end-of-course test score in five subject areas and Likert surveys completed by teachers.  The study found that there was no significant differences in any of the courses, except with the Algebra I course (where there was a significant difference, which Wendy attributed to the fact that the online course was designed using a game-based delivery model).  There were also no significant differences in the program effects in biology and English, but again significant differences in the Algebra.  Wendy also reported that the survey data indicated that teacher effect was a better way to judge face-to-face teaching, as opposed to online teaching (largely due to the fact that the online course was largely static and teachers did not have the same ability to control the environment as they do in the face-to-face classroom).  Finally, Wendy also reported that in both her study – and a follow-up one done by someone else in Ohio – that teachers don’t understand the value-added evaluation.

As an aside, the no significant differences findings shouldn’t surprise anyone – Clark (1983) has advised us for the past 30+ years that these media comparison studies are of little value.  It was also clear from the session that even in the face of overwhelming evidence that the value-added model of teacher evaluation is fundamental and methodologically flawed (see the AERA study as just one example).

The third panelist was Anne, who also focused her portion on her dissertation research – “The Lived Experience of Online High School Social Studies Teachers Utilizing Project-Based Lessons at a Virtual School.”  The study surveyed 11 teachers, and those teachers were asked what they did and also what they felt was important:

  • by far, individual telephone calls to students was the most undertaken activity and also perceived as the most important
  • I missed the second one (as I was on an angle to the screen and the font was small – and Anne was quickly getting through her material)
  • the third one (which dropped off significantly in terms of numbers) was conducting individual or small group webinars with the students – which was about equal for amount undertaken and perceived importance

From the interview data – which included 7 of the 11 teachers – she found that teachers really needed to scaffold the project-based activities, often because the students didn’t complete the activities in the way in which they were originally sequenced (or the intended sequencing).  It was also due to the fact that the self-paced learning, which allowed students to work in fits and spurts.  This required teachers to be very proactive in terms of their communication and evaluating the students at numerous points throughout the project, and not just at the very end.

The fourth and final panelist was Ray.  Ray’s portion, because he wasn’t able to attend, was a recorded PowerPoint.  I assume Ray will be posting this somewhere (likely his blog – see http://rmrose.blogspot.com/), so I won’t be writing notes on his session – I’ll leave that to Ray to cover the content.

SITE 2015 – Effective K-12 Online Course Design & Technology

The seventh session, and the first one for Wednesday – and one that largely went unnoticed because it was tagged as a “Graduate Education & Faculty Development” session (so I missed the first half), at the 2015 annual conference of the Society for Information Technology and Teacher Education related to K-12 online learning that I am blogging is:

Effective K-12 Online Course Design & Technology

  1. Christopher Carnahan, Ph.D., Doctoral Program Coordinator, New Jersey City University, United States

Wednesday, March 4 10:15-11:15 AM in Amazon B-F Rounds View on map

<Presentation: Paper #44114>
Amazon B-F Rounds Wednesday, Mar 04 2015 10:15AM-11:15AM
Chia-Jung Yeh: Amazon B-F Rounds, 2015-03-04 10:15:00-2015-03-04 11:15:00

As online K-12 education grows there is a need for a research based approach to designing effective online content. This presentation will focus on how to create programs and courses that address student engagement, retention, and achievement. Additionally it will discuss the impact and design of courses in order to address the needs of students with disabilities. Technology recommendations and approaches to teacher development will also be covered. Additionally this presentation will discuss a current research project that is tracking students who have graduated from online high schools and moved onto higher education.

By the time I had sat down, Chris was entertaining questions from the group.  For the last ten minutes Leanna and I just got to chat with him about research in general and the kinds of things that he was working.

From what I could tell, his roundtable focused on his dissertation work.  Looking in the ProQuest Dissertation and Theses database, I was able to find this entry for Chris:

The effects of learning in an online virtual environment on K-12 students

Carnahan, Christopher D.. Indiana University of Pennsylvania, ProQuest, UMI Dissertations Publishing, 2012. 3546297.

Abstract (summary)

Online learning has seen an explosive growth at the K-12 level, however little research has used an experimental design approach to specifically examine the outcomes of delivery methods. This study examines what effect learning in an immersive learning environment (virtual world) has on student achievement and satisfaction with the lesson. To conduct this experiment, four groups received instruction in their seventh grade science course. This occurred with two groups having live virtual lessons (synchronous), one simulated asynchronous, and one traditional classroom lesson serving as the control. The same instructor delivered all four lessons with identical content. The results of this study showed that no significant difference in achievement was present based on the method of instructional delivery. As for the motivation of learners, there was a significant difference for satisfaction with the virtual environment having a higher level of satisfaction. No significant difference was detected between genders within groups for either satisfaction or achievement. The results of this study show that learners in the virtual environment had at least equal achievement growth and had a higher level of satisfaction while learning in a virtual classroom. Additional research is called for to investigate the long-term impact that learning in an online virtual environment has on student achievement and satisfaction.

Indexing (details)

Title
The effects of learning in an online virtual environment on K-12 students
Number of pages
137
Publication year
2012
Degree date
2012
School code
0318
Source
DAI-A 74/04(E), Oct 2013
Place of publication
Ann Arbor
Country of publication
United States
ISBN
9781267797391
Committee member
Lenze, James S., Ritchey, Jeffrey A.
University/institution
Indiana University of Pennsylvania
Department
Comm. Media
University location
United States — Pennsylvania
Degree
Ph.D.
Source type
Dissertations & Theses
Language
English
Document type
Dissertation/Thesis
Dissertation/thesis number
3546297
ProQuest document ID
1252057250
Copyright
Copyright ProQuest, UMI Dissertations Publishing 2012
Database
ProQuest Dissertations & Theses A&I

It appears that you can access the full dissertation at:

https://dspace.iup.edu/bitstream/handle/2069/1905/Christopher%20D.%20Carnahan.pdf?sequence=1

One of the projects that he was working on in the Fall was looking at the perceptions of cyber school students who go on to university.  He paid to access the responses to specific questions from the “National Survey for Student Engagement.”  He collected the data this past semester, so he hasn’t done anything with it yet.  But he did say that most of the students he surveyed were not concerned with the social aspect or the lack of socialization in their online learning experience.

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