Case study of the challenges faced by adult students enrolled in an online blended distance learning program
CASE STUDY OF THE CHALLENGES FACED BY ADULT STUDENTS ENROLLED IN
AN ONLINE BLENDED DISTANCE LEARNING PROGRAM
By Lori K. Tanner
This research attempted to discover the theory that provides insight into analyzing and
identifying critical barriers for two cohorts of adult students participating in an online alternative
teacher education program. The findings of the study are in the form of grounded theory that
describes and explains the experiences of the adult students, the faculty, and the staff
participating in the online blended distanceeducation program.
At the outset of this study, the first cohort of adult learners were completing their final
coursework and preparing to pass the state teacher licensing Praxis examination while the second
cohort was being selected. Participants included the adult students, the faculty, and the researcher
who was also the curriculum and technology coordinator for the online licensing program. This
study was conducted as a descriptive case study of the barriers and difficulties faced by
nontraditional adult students seeking an alternative route to special education licensing in an
online blended learning format. This study suggested how educational technology could be better
integrated into an online format for alternative teacher education programs.
Data collected in the form of interviews, email correspondences, observations, evaluative
surveys, and documents from participants in both the first and second cohort groups contributed
to the development of the grounded theory. Briefly stated, the data upon which the grounded
theory was based suggests that these nontraditional adult students must have clear paths of
communication available especially when social inclusion is limited by the online format?
learning new pedagogy is secondary until a level of technology competency has been reached?
the adult students will commit to learning when the goals and objectives are applicable and
practical to their personal and professional needs? these nontraditional adult students have
competing priorities and struggle with balancing family responsibilities, job obligations, and
commitment to the program and this is only exasperated by the state, university, and program
assessment demands required for full licensing.
School Location:USA - Ohio
Source Type:Master's Thesis
Keywords:online learning distance education teacher special alternative route to licensing andragogy adult theory grounded case study teachers students
Date of Publication: