Understanding the Factors Limiting the Acceptability of Online Courses and Degrees
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Adams, J. (2008). Understanding the Factors Limiting the Acceptability of Online Courses and Degrees. International Journal on E-Learning, 7(4), 573-587. Chesapeake, VA: AACE.
Retrieved from http://www.editlib.org/p/24314.
International Journal on E-Learning
Volume 7, Issue 4, October 2008
Association for the Advancement of Computing in Education (AACE) Chesapeake, VA
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This study examines prior research conducted on the acceptability of online degrees in hiring situations. In a national survey, a questionnaire was developed for assessing the importance of objections to accepting job candidates with online degrees and sent to university search committee chairs in institutions advertising open faculty positions (which normally require a doctoral degree). Qualitative statements regarding such objections were drawn from four national surveys and arranged into a paired-comparison questionnaire. Based on the Law of Comparative Judgment, an index was developed from a statistical analysis based on the responses of 123 university and college administrators (chairpersons, department heads, and deans). The findings revealed that objections concerned three issues: (a) face-to-face classroom experience, (b) reputation of institution for rigor, and (c) mentored learning experiences are the stumbling blocks for online degrees to be perceived as being as acceptable as traditional degrees. These findings may provide an important perspective on the difficult issue of how to design new approaches to distance education that will improve the acceptability of course and degree offerings.
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