Distance, online and campus higher education: reflections on learning outcomes

Iain McPhee, Tor Söderström

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

Purpose
– The purpose of this paper is to discuss performance in postgraduate education in Sweden and Scotland. Drawing on two cases, the paper considers three themes: differences in students’ performance by study mode, differences in students’ performance by length of study, and finally comparing performance by study mode between modules in Scotland with an entire programme in Sweden.

Design/methodology/approach
– The empirical setting from Scotland builds on an evaluation of online and on‐campus study groups with exactly the same module syllabus. The Swedish setting is also based on an evaluation of distance and on‐campus study groups with exactly the same module syllabus. The data compiled in both countries arise from student performance scores and grades.

Findings
– The results indicate that students in both countries foremost use the virtual learning environment (VLE) as a forum for accessing information, to access asynchronous postings in the forums and access streaming‐synchronous online lectures which are also accessed asynchronously in the VLE. The results show that there are no differences between the grades or test scores between campus students with face‐to‐face education and distance students with electronically (VLE) mediated education. These differences and similarities will form the basis of these reflections in this paper.

Research limitations/implications
– The study is limited because the examples given are only a few cases and small samples and there is a need to more rigorously investigate different educational programs in different academic disciplines.

Originality/value
– The paper contributes to quality issues in distance, online and campus education by taking into account, in the first case, different student performance in the same course over a longer period and in the second case, changes over time within the same educational program.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)144-155
Number of pages12
JournalCampus-Wide Information Systems
Volume29
Issue number3
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2012

Fingerprint

Education
Students
learning
education
performance
student
learning environment
syllabus
study group
educational program
Sweden
evaluation
methodology
Values

Keywords

  • blended learning
  • summative grades
  • education
  • online education
  • Sweden
  • United Kingdom
  • learning methods

Cite this

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abstract = "Purpose– The purpose of this paper is to discuss performance in postgraduate education in Sweden and Scotland. Drawing on two cases, the paper considers three themes: differences in students’ performance by study mode, differences in students’ performance by length of study, and finally comparing performance by study mode between modules in Scotland with an entire programme in Sweden.Design/methodology/approach– The empirical setting from Scotland builds on an evaluation of online and on‐campus study groups with exactly the same module syllabus. The Swedish setting is also based on an evaluation of distance and on‐campus study groups with exactly the same module syllabus. The data compiled in both countries arise from student performance scores and grades.Findings– The results indicate that students in both countries foremost use the virtual learning environment (VLE) as a forum for accessing information, to access asynchronous postings in the forums and access streaming‐synchronous online lectures which are also accessed asynchronously in the VLE. The results show that there are no differences between the grades or test scores between campus students with face‐to‐face education and distance students with electronically (VLE) mediated education. These differences and similarities will form the basis of these reflections in this paper.Research limitations/implications– The study is limited because the examples given are only a few cases and small samples and there is a need to more rigorously investigate different educational programs in different academic disciplines.Originality/value– The paper contributes to quality issues in distance, online and campus education by taking into account, in the first case, different student performance in the same course over a longer period and in the second case, changes over time within the same educational program.",
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Distance, online and campus higher education : reflections on learning outcomes. / McPhee, Iain; Söderström, Tor.

In: Campus-Wide Information Systems, Vol. 29, No. 3, 2012, p. 144-155.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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