Discussion in 'General Distance Learning Discussions' started by Randy Miller, Sep 11, 2006.
And in that we are alike. Do I need a doctorate? Probably not. But the personal satisfaction of having one would make me feel good. It was on this list that I found about NCU's discount for retired military - which has resulted in substantial savings.
"A wise old owl sat in an oak, The more he heard, the less he spoke; The less he spoke, the more he heard; Why aren't we all like that wise old bird?"
It's encouraging to hear that someone with a masters from an NA school, an ABD from NSU and now getting a PhD at an online proprietary school (i'm talking about you, Jim) was granted tenureship at a decent B&M university.
This is an inspiration for those attending NA and RA online schools.
So rather than attack Jim, we should praise him. Jim is an inspiration!
Just to be clear - they do not count the NA masters, just the RA, and the school is tier 3, not 1 or 2.
If we were *all* like that wise old bird then who would do the talking?
You see, in this world there are two kinds of people, my friend: those who talk and those who listen.
Re: Re: Re: Re: University of Phoenix Online
While I don't doubt that UOP has some faculty members at various campuses who could benefit from more facilitation training, in the nearly 400 peer reviews that I've conducted, instructors weigh discussion participation between 10% to 20% of the final grade.
Hence, if a student were to post "Hi" every day of the required 4 of 7 days per week and complete all the other assignments perfectly, they could earn a final grade of B or C maximum.
However, a student who is so disengaged would probably not be working on the team projects adequately and that would make them ineligible for another 30% of the total points.
Therefore, it is unlikely that a student who did not participate in a meaningful way would earn a passing grade in the course.
Still, it is possible to pass the class with a D grade without participating just like one could at a bricks and mortar school.
My two cents,
I have just started at U of Phx (second master's degree). I am only taking a one-credit introductory course and I am required to complete three (properly APA formatted) papers, two team projects, and post *substantive* comments five days out of seven. The school standard is four but this instructor requires five. Saying "hi" gets you credit for attendance but not participation. 15% of the course grade is class participation. They expect it. One student said she couldn't post for a few days because her SIL just got back from Iraq; the instructor basically told her to suck it up and deal with it.
I don't know what the fuss is about class participation. It's also often required in B&M classes, too. And it's hard for me because I work 12 hour shifts and have to come home and log in with something meaningful, but I do it. I think it's going to get a lot harder when I start the 3-credit classes next week.
The reason many people don't like UoP's participation grade standards is that it's far easier to grade and judge than participation in a B & M classroom. How many opportunities are there to participate in a Penn State lecture class with 150 students in it?
It's really easy to grade participation when one can look and see that Student X posted discussion participation 4 times on 5 days, so they get an A. It's a little less subjective, more objective. I could see why some academics might not like that
Your point has led some UOP students to wonder if the online environment is actually harder than traditional face-to-face classes; the online instructor can easily tell who is doing the readings and prepared for class. Unlike in a face-to-face learning environment, the online classroom features an unlimited amount of "air time", so that everyone can discuss as much as they are able to. This difference is why many of us who teach online have wondered why the traditionalist instructors cling to their religion of the status quo. Personally, I have found this amusing for years and have wondered when folks would wise up to the advantages of online teaching for many subjects..
Excellent points. I would have to postulate that traditional academia is adverse to change. In addition, anything that makes things more quantitative or actual vs. qualitative or hypothetical leaves many academics uncomfortable.
I teach in both on-line and on-ground environments. I'm quite concerned with on-line grading being turned into a simple count of posts. It really leads to pretty inane conversation and silly responses by students.
On-ground has some real advantages when it comes to teaching, for example, business cases. A skilled teacher can work student individually to see what they know. In a back and forth exchange - the sort that takes days on-line but only seconds on ground - a good teacher can make critical teaching points.
I understand on-line has its place - but on-ground does to.
Regards - Andy
There's a fatally flawed assumption here - I am curious to see if anyone spots it.
My take would be that simply posting doesn't imply substance. My "butt in seat" classes (the majority of my experience) involved a LOT of give and take in the discussions(even it was only once a week), and gave the professor a solid basis for participation and knowledge level.
My online experience at Bellevue usually involved 15 students, maybe 5 or 6 or so of which would actually post something substantative. The instructor (to his credit) would publicly chide them to contribute more, but I get the feeling it was like pulling teeth. I'm sure they still passed.
Would that there were only 150 students in some of my PSU classes. I recall 800 students in my biology class, and a great many classes with 400 students. Pretty much the course grade consisted of one or two Scantron midterms and a final.
As I said, I am in UOP now, and it's not enough to say hello. The student must make a substantive contribution to the discussion in order to receive participation credit. But the bulk of the course grade comes from other elements. It's a lot easier to require participation when you're not all fighting for the instructor's attention as you would be if you had to make a similar contribution to your B&M class. Class discussion doesn't take away from the course time.
Although others have stated to the contrary, I fail to see how any meaninful participation grade can be given for any class with 800 students in it. Most of which is probaly taught by a graduate assistant rather than the PhD professor anyway.
For "one on one" instructor attention, you can't beat a UoP class with 10 students in it...
I don't recall ever recieving a participation grade while attending a B&M university. What I do recall is sitting mindlessly in class, never participating, then craming for exams, and consequently not learning much.
Just like anything else in life, you get out of it, what you put into it, but it seems to me there is more opportunity to "coast" in a B&M setting, particulary when you have a few hundred people in a class.
I guess my experience has been somewhat unique. I completed half of my MBA course in a traditional campus setting and the other half was completed online. I found that it took much less discipline with the online courses.
With classroom based courses, I had to be somewhere each week with assignments completed and text read. It was easy for the instructor to identify the student that had not reviewed the assigned text. The 4 hour classes were spent interacting with each other the entire time. 4 hours of live conversation could take months to complete on a message board where people only log-in a couple of times a day.
On the other hand, with online classes, students have the luxury of looking up answers when the instructor asks questions (no instant response needed). Message board conversations are very inefficient and meaningful discussions are far too rare.
I felt online classes lived up to what is generally advertised: easy schedule, easy admissions, easy financing, etc...
Surely I am not the first to notice that online programs are rarely marketed as rigorous, top-notch educational programs.
I've seen this - on-line is convenient and accessible. It may meet your needs. But with few exceptions the best business programs in the country aren't of the strictly on-line variety.
Regards - Andy
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