Removing the Boxes John Wager and Allen Salzman Triton College
Francis Bacon’s studio, at the time of the artist’s death Removing the Boxes Without boxes, this is what YOUR office would look like: There’s NOTHING wrong with boxes! Without them, we’d be out of a job and couldn’t organize our offices!
Problems to Solve: • Low initial enrollment in some online sections
Problems to Solve: • Lower than expected course completion rates; higher rates of students leaving the courses
Problems to Solve: • On-line student reports of feeling isolated and being unconnected with campus
Problems to Solve: • Student reports of inability to finish on-campus classes due to changing work schedules or missed classes
Problems to Solve: • Student difficulty reading primary sources, and often coming to on-campus class unprepared
Problems to Solve: • Student reluctance to take another on-line class without some familiarity with the teacher or course content
Problems to Solve: • Faculty perception of a need to help students connect knowledge in one discipline with other disciplines
Boxes of our Own Making On-Line On-Campus Students Students
Boxes of our Own Making • On-Campus “sections” and on-line “sections” had been separate;
Solutions: • 5 seats were set aside in “on-campus” sections for “on-line” students.
The daily calendar for on-campus sections was made available to on-line students so they knew exactly what their classmates were doing on any given day. • The “calendar” feature of WebCT was used to link to the on-campus daily syllabus.
Steps to Get There: • Faculty developed detailed printed daily calendar for the connected classes. • The daily syllabus was put on-line for on-campus students. • WebBoard used experimentally for on-campus students. • WebCT used to offer courses to on-line students. • WebCT used for both on-line and on-campus students in integrated sections.
Mechanics: • Our registration database contained a field for “combined with” originally used for non-credit students. • This was used to set aside 5 seats (of 25) for net students.
Results: • It didn’t matter how few on-line students enrolled; even one or two students could take an on-line class.
Results: • Several on-campus students reported the only way they were able to complete the term was by doing part of their work on-line. • Data for on-line students is incomplete, but retention rates were higher.
Results: • About 3/5ths of the on-line students did come to their “section” to attend a class or attend a performance of a local play with their on-campus classmates.
Results: • Dr. Terry Fencl, the theater professor, said “There is no such thing as an absence in my class; a student has to do the work in one place or the other.”
Results: • On-line students had a large enough class to conduct discussions, and on-campus students were motivated to use the computer to communicate with on-line students.
Boxes of our Own Making Philosophy Sociology Students Students
Ethics-Theatre-Sociology links built into each course encouraged students to see interdisciplinary connections as well as get a “preview” of other linked courses. Solutions:
Results: • Students reported that one of the best things about the program was the “interdisciplinary links” both on campus and on line. • On-line students enrolled in another linked class with greater frequency than they enrolled in other classes.
Boxes of our Own Making Textbooks Web Resources
Solutions: • A “guided tutorial” for the readings was set up, especially for ethics.
Guided Readings More like “tutorial” than hypertext Doesn’t require constant faculty response Tracks detailed picture of student reading
Results: • On-line students showed a much better grasp of difficult readings than on-campus students as measured by the quizzes given to both.
Removing the Boxes ON-Campus -- On-Line Boxes Ethics -- Theater Courses On-Line Resources -- Textbook
Removing the Boxes Ethics -- Theater Courses On-Line Resources -- Textbook
Removing the Boxes • On-Line Resources -- Textbook
Removing the Boxes John Wager and Allen Salzman Triton College firstname.lastname@example.org email@example.com http://www.triton.cc.il.us/undergrad_ctr/