CCE Theses and Dissertations

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Date of Award


Document Type

Dissertation - NSU Access Only

Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy in Computing Technology in Education (DCTE)


Graduate School of Computer and Information Sciences


Martha Snyder

Committee Member

Laurie P Dringus

Committee Member

Steven Terrell


The steady and consistent growth of online learning and the rapid development of Web 2.0 technologies such as wikis and blogs have led to innovative methods of training and instruction. As a result, continuing research is needed to develop and validate instructional design theories and models that support teaching and learning in today's technology-rich learning environment.

The goal of this research was to refine the Creating Online Learning Communities for Adults (COLCA) instructional design (ID) theory by using the theory to design an online faculty development course. A formative research design guided the investigation. Formative research seeks to identify improvements for an instructional design theory based on a designed instance of the theory, in this case an online faculty development course in Web 2.0 tools and techniques. This research is a designed case applying the COLCA instructional design theory to an online faculty development course. Data sources included course documents and observations, email messages, and participant interviews. These data were used to determine which methods prescribed by the COLCA ID theory work well, what methods could be improved, and in which specific situations each method works best.

As an original contribution to the discipline of information technology as applied to teaching and learning, this study sought to improve upon an instructional design theory currently in its early stages of development and informs the design of online learning communities for adults. This research is important to continued growth and advancement of contemporary instructional design theories that provide support for emerging technologies, adult learners, and online learning methods that facilitate the development of online learning communities and communities of practice.

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