College Students’ Perception of an Online Course in Special Education

Session Description
When redesigning an online course, obtaining and integrating feedback from students is a critical facet of an iterative design and development cycle. This study examined college students’ perceptions of specific elements of a redesigned online course. Elements included course structure, curriculum and instruction, technology, and student connection. In addition, student age and self-reported online course preparedness were also considered. The study used a nested, mixed methods research design that allowed collection of both quantitative and qualitative data. The findings showed that (1) the course structure was the most highly rated element, whereas student connection was lowest, (2) students’ age impacted student perception of curriculum and instruction, course structure, and technology course elements, and (3) no significant difference was found in students’ online course preparedness and their perception of the course elements. These findings add to a growing body of literature on student perception of online courses and may to some extent shift views on the importance of preparedness and student-student connection in an online learning environment.
Ariana Eichelberger
Ariana Eichelberger, University of Hawaii at Manoa, Honolulu, Hawaii, USA
Ari is the Instructional Designer for the College of Education at the University of Hawaii at Manoa. She also works with the Distance Course Design and Consulting group at the College designing online programs and courses for the university.
Hong Ngo
Hong Ngo, University of Hawaii at Manoa, Honolulu, HI, USA
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