Increasing Faculty-Student Communication Through Email Messaging to Improve the Success of Online Students
Donna L. Jimison, Walden University, United States
Walden University . Awarded
In a large community college in the Midwest, an online medical terminology course was experiencing success rates below that of college- and state-wide levels. This study evaluated the outcomes of intentional, increased numbers of e-mail communications between under-performing students and faculty for the purpose of improving student academic achievement, identified as achieving a score of 70% or greater. Using the tenets of Tinto's theory of isolation as a source of student attrition, the use of frequent e-mail messaging was expected to decrease student isolation and increase student success. The research questions asked if the treatment groups receiving automated e-mail messages from the instructor when assignments were due, missed, when students did not score above 70% on assignments, or when students did not access the course for 5 consecutive days would increase student success and satisfaction. Using the Noel-Levitz Priorities Survey for Online Learners, this pre-experimental design used a nonrandom convenience sample with preformed groups and compared non-treatment groups with treatment groups by measuring student outcomes. A t test indicated a statistically significant difference in the mean scores for total points earned (t = 2.89, p < .05) and weekly quiz scores for the treatment group ( t = 5.42, p < .05). In comparison with historical data, a t test indicated that the treatment group reported a statistically significant difference in the survey item related to their satisfaction with faculty feedback (t = 2.07, p < .05). These findings led to a proposed faculty development seminar devoted to using an automated e-mail messaging system. Using professional development seminars to increase faculty communications through technology for online courses may positively impact social change by enhancing student achievement in online courses.
Jimison, D.L. Increasing Faculty-Student Communication Through Email Messaging to Improve the Success of Online Students. Ph.D. thesis, Walden University.
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