Proposal Title

Exploring Enjoyment in Distance Learning Environments

Co-Authors

Stephanie Allen, University of Tennessee at Martin

Track

Research Proposal / Teaching with Technology

Proposal Abstract

As universities turn to distance learning technology, educators are concerned about an equitable experience across diverse classroom settings. The current research, featuring data collected across three disciplines over the course of one semester, compares three types of classroom settings (face-to-face, classroom-based video conferencing, and computer-based video conferencing) and how those affect self-report student enjoyment scores. The results of our chi-square analysis indicate that in its current form students are significantly less engaged in classroom-based video conferencing settings. The presentation will interactively demonstrate techniques for increasing engagement while using classroom-based video conferencing to meet the needs of students in rural settings.

Proposal Description

As universities turn to distance learning technology, educators are concerned about equitable experiences across diverse classroom settings. While educators are putting efforts into making content delivery match between course types, we noticed that the overall classroom experience may not be comparable. In short, universities are eager to reach more students through technology, but do not realize technology often makes the classes insufferable for the student – potentially turning the student away from the university in the process. One such endeavor in use at many universities is the distance learning classroom, involving an instructor using video-conferencing technology to interact with students at multiple physical locations. The instructor rotates around the physical locations week-to-week, resulting in the student getting some in-person contact with the instructor, but not the same as a traditional classroom. The goal of the current research is to investigate whether student enjoyment is affected by their type of classroom. The study, featuring data collected across three disciplines over the course of one semester, compares three types of classroom settings. Student from traditional courses (face-to-face delivery), distance learning courses (classroom-based video conferencing), and Zoom courses (computer-based video conferencing) responded to a short survey rating their overall enjoyment of the course. A Chi-square analysis of the self-report data indicates that in its current form students experience significantly less enjoyment in the distance learning classroom settings. Based on these findings, we can infer major risks to the future of technology-based distance learning courses unless steps are taken to make them more enjoyable for students. We will demonstrate our recommendations for alleviating the problem, including improving technology to help the student interact with other physical locations, increasing training for technology assistants, and increasing awareness of the enjoyment gap between students physically in front of the instructor and those in other locations.

Session Format

Presentation Session

Location

Room 2

Publication Type and Release Option

Event

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COinS
 
Mar 29th, 10:00 AM Mar 29th, 10:45 AM

Exploring Enjoyment in Distance Learning Environments

Room 2

As universities turn to distance learning technology, educators are concerned about an equitable experience across diverse classroom settings. The current research, featuring data collected across three disciplines over the course of one semester, compares three types of classroom settings (face-to-face, classroom-based video conferencing, and computer-based video conferencing) and how those affect self-report student enjoyment scores. The results of our chi-square analysis indicate that in its current form students are significantly less engaged in classroom-based video conferencing settings. The presentation will interactively demonstrate techniques for increasing engagement while using classroom-based video conferencing to meet the needs of students in rural settings.