Research in Learner Characteristics and Student Outcomes

The National Distance Education and Technological Advancement (DETA) Research Center, funded by the U.S. Department of Education’s Fund for the Improvement of Postsecondary Education (FIPSE), has awarded subgrant awards for research examining key factors influencing student success in distance education. These grants support a range of projects, including research focused on the influences and outcomes of students who are underrepresented in distance education research (e.g., racial/ethnic minorities, first generation college students, and students with disabilities).

These studies address the DETA Research Questions: What patterns of behaviors lead to increased student learning for different populations? What support structures are critical to providing quality access to online instruction? These studies examine students preparedness and readiness, such as access to technology, experience with technology, organization skills, and more, that influence student outcomes such as learning. Findings can result in institutional support structures to increase the readiness and preparedness of students.

Milwaukee Area Technical College.  Pam Holt is examining the influence of learner and instructional characteristics on student success.  She seeks to understand the impact of student preparedness and readiness for online courses on student success. As a data collection site, this institution has joined the DETA Research Center to support our endeavor of conducting cross-institutional studies. Note: University of Wisconsin - Milwaukee and San Diego Community College District will be participating in this cross-institutional study.

Montana State University and WCET.  Cali Morrison is investigating what motivates students to enroll in competency-based education programs for their postsecondary educational pursuits.  She also seeks to understand the relationships between enrollment motivations, institutional characteristics, and student success.

Oregon State University. Katie Linder is investigating college students’ experiences with, and perceptions of, video captions and impact of captioning use on student learning. In addition, she will examine the student preparedness or readiness, specifically self-directedness.

San Diego Community College District.  Kats Gustafson is examining the influence of learner and instructional characteristics on student success.  She seeks to understand the impact of student preparedness and readiness for online courses on student success. As a data collection site, this institution has joined the DETA Research Center to support our endeavor of conducting cross-institutional studies.  Note: University of Wisconsin - Milwaukee and Milwaukee Area Technical College will be participating in this cross-institutional study.  Note: University of Wisconsin - Milwaukee and Milwaukee Area Technical College will be participating in this cross-institutional study.

All institutions are welcome to partner with the DETA research team in its efforts to advance research on student success in distance education.  Interested parties should contact the DETA center for more information: deta-staff@uwm.edu.

To learn more about the National DETA Research Center, follow their updates on Twitter (@uwmdeta) and Facebook (/UWMDETA).

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