Effectiveness of using learner-centered principles on student retention in distance education courses in rural schools

Wallace H. Hannum, Matthew J. Irvin, Pui Wa Lei, Thomas W. Farmer

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

26 Scopus citations

Abstract

This article examines the effectiveness of training facilitators in secondary schools to follow APA learner-centered principles to support learners in distance education. The study was a cluster-randomized control trial with 36 match pairs of schools and 246 students in the rural USA. The schools were selected at random and assigned at random to treatment condition. Instructors were blind to the treatment condition as were the local facilitators and schools. Data on length of time spent in the course and whether students completed the semester were analyzed. The results indicated that students in the intervention condition completed the first semester at a statistically higher rate than control students where facilitators did not have this training. The number of weeks students remained in the course was likewise statistically different with students in the intervention condition staying in the course more weeks holding instructor constant.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)211-229
Number of pages19
JournalDistance Education
Volume29
Issue number3
DOIs
StatePublished - Nov 2008

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Education

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