A high quality portal framework for asynchronous learning networks: Intellectual capital aggregation and organization
Mohamed A. Alharthi, Vanderbilt University, United States
Vanderbilt University . Awarded
The advancement in computer networks and information technology has enabled greater access to knowledge and learning opportunities. Asynchronous Learning Networks (ALN), a leading vehicle for providing online learning, is experiencing tremendous growth as a result of this advancements. This study presents a portal framework for aggregation and organization of peer reviewed ALN intellectual capital from distributed sources. The main purpose of the framework is to encourage the Sloan Consortium members and other ALN providers to share intellectual capital so that people can access this capital in a convenient way. The portal consists of three components: Sloan-C catalog, Speakers and Consultants Bureau, and Effective Practices Sharing. Presently, there are 370 accredited ALN programs in Sloan-C catalog offering over 5900 ALN courses, 30 speakers/consultants in the speakers and consultants bureau, and 45 effective practices in the effective practices sharing. This fairly large amount of peer reviewed intellectual capital could not have been aggregated and organized in a single point of access otherwise. The study examines the aggregated ALN program information to highlight a number of program characteristics at a wide range of programs, which offer different types of degrees in different disciplines. Findings provide insights into: distribution of ALN programs in terms of geographic location, types of degrees, and disciplines; growth of new ALN programs; average ALN class size; student retention rates; program tuition for distant students; and online degrees awarded. The study outlines the ALN program requirements such as enrollment requirements, tool requirements for ALN students, and residency requirements. It also reports the impact of ALN on faculty, students, and pedagogy at participating programs.
Alharthi, M.A. A high quality portal framework for asynchronous learning networks: Intellectual capital aggregation and organization. Ph.D. thesis, Vanderbilt University.
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