Proposal Abstract

The purpose of this mixed methods research study was to address the issue of community of practice influence on nontraditional students’ persistence in online and traditional learning environments. In phase one, the quantitative portion; the researcher conducted a descriptive analysis using data collected from an online pre-structured survey known as the Classroom Community Scale, developed by Rovai (2002). For phase two, the qualitative portion, the researcher used qualitative semi-structured interviews to examine the perceptions and experiences of applied arts nontraditional students enrolled in interior design online and traditional courses. The quantitative phase used a purposeful sample of 53 nontraditional students, while the qualitative phase explored the perceptions of 18 nontraditional students. Descriptive statistics, independent samples t-tests, and Mann-Whitney U tests were conducted to determine significant differences between groups. The quantitative analysis revealed significant differences between nontraditional students in online and traditional courses. Nontraditional students in traditional courses reported a higher degree of community of practice, interdependence, and trust than did those in online courses. The qualitative data revealed student perceptions that supported the quantitative findings.

Location

Room 2002

Publication Type and Release Option

Presentation (Open Access)

 
Mar 27th, 11:00 AM Mar 27th, 11:45 AM

Community of Practice Influence on Nontraditional Students’ Persistence in Online and Traditional

Room 2002

The purpose of this mixed methods research study was to address the issue of community of practice influence on nontraditional students’ persistence in online and traditional learning environments. In phase one, the quantitative portion; the researcher conducted a descriptive analysis using data collected from an online pre-structured survey known as the Classroom Community Scale, developed by Rovai (2002). For phase two, the qualitative portion, the researcher used qualitative semi-structured interviews to examine the perceptions and experiences of applied arts nontraditional students enrolled in interior design online and traditional courses. The quantitative phase used a purposeful sample of 53 nontraditional students, while the qualitative phase explored the perceptions of 18 nontraditional students. Descriptive statistics, independent samples t-tests, and Mann-Whitney U tests were conducted to determine significant differences between groups. The quantitative analysis revealed significant differences between nontraditional students in online and traditional courses. Nontraditional students in traditional courses reported a higher degree of community of practice, interdependence, and trust than did those in online courses. The qualitative data revealed student perceptions that supported the quantitative findings.