CEC Theses and Dissertations

Title

Statewide Online Web-based Training Program to Prepare New Jersey Community College Faculty for Distance Teaching

Date of Award

1999

Document Type

Dissertation

Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)

Department

Graduate School of Computer and Information Sciences

Advisor

Trudy Abramson

Committee Member

Maxine S. Cohen

Committee Member

Steven R. Terrell

Abstract

Currently, given the increase of post-secondary distance learning, pressure is being put upon faculty at colleges and universities in New Jersey to create and teach Web-based courses. The primary problem is the lack of a Web-based distance education training strategy for New Jersey's community college faculty. Often, recommendations for faculty training are based on expert judgement, technical managers, or a review of the literature. In contrast, the purpose of this study was to employ a research design using a quantitative survey instrument to determine faculty perceptions of their own Web-based instruction needs. The research problem of conducting a training needs analysis of faculty regarding their own Web-based instruction needs was seen as significant to ensure that professors can meet the challenges imposed by their technologically skilled students. In addition, the design of in-service training requires the cooperation and participation of the faculty. The sample consisted of full-time New Jersey community college faculty with teaching roles. Data was collected with a survey instrument titled "Faculty Self-Assessment of Web-based Professional Development Needs," developed by the researcher. This instrument identified: a) faculty perceptions of their proficiency in web-based instruction knowledge and skill areas; b) perceptions of faculty regarding their own Web-based instruction training needs (software, hardware, and instructional methodologies); c) preferred methods of training delivery (e.g. one-on-one, mentoring, etc); d) faculty perceptions of impediments to implementing Web-based courses; e) faculty preferences for incentives for implementing online classes; and f) faculty interest in implementing only components of distance education technology. Analysis and synthesis of the questionnaires provided answers to the above questions, and a needs-driven statewide Web-based distance education training strategy was developed to meet the needs of a diverse, urban, suburban, and rural population. A panel of expert Web-based teachers, trainers, and administrators validated this plan. Finally, this proactive model in distance education may serve as a national model for other community colleges.

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