About this paper

Appears in:
Page: 5296 (abstract only)
Publication year: 2014
ISBN: 978-84-617-2484-0
ISSN: 2340-1095

Conference name: 7th International Conference of Education, Research and Innovation
Dates: 17-19 November, 2014
Location: Seville, Spain

IMPROVING AN ONLINE UNDERGRADUATE HUMAN ANATOMY COURSE WITH LABORATORY: HOW CAN WE OPTIMIZE STUDENT-TEACHER COMMUNICATION?

K. Rogers, S. Attardi

Western University (CANADA)
An online section of an undergraduate Human Anatomy course with a laboratory component was offered for the first time in 2012/13. Lectures for face-to-face (F2F) students (n=365) were broadcast in live and archived format to online students (n=40) using virtual classroom software (Blackboard Collaborate). Labs were delivered online by a teaching assistant who manipulated 3D computer models in the virtual classroom. A mixed methods approach is being used to determine the effectiveness of the online format and identify areas for improvement. Measures of student performance (4 term tests, 24 weekly lab quizzes) were compared between the sections. Preliminary data suggested that prior academic performance, and not course delivery format, predicts performance in anatomy. Survey results indicated that while students preferred online lectures (52%), F2F labs were preferred (85%). Online lectures gave students the benefit of reviewing archived sessions, while F2F labs allowed for better student-teacher communication.

The course was offered again in 2013/14 in F2F (n = 354) and online (n = 138) formats. Weekly lab quizzes were replaced by quarterly lab exams to increase the amount of lab time available for demonstration. Assessments of student performance (4 term tests, 4 lab exams) were compared between the sections. One statistically significant difference was found between the sections on Lab Exam 1 (Mann-Whitney U test, p < 0.001) with a mean of 72.77% (SD = 11.87%) for online students and 67.67% (SD = 13.29%) for F2F students; however, this did not translate into a significant difference between final course grades. Incoming grades will be correlated with final anatomy grades to determine if prior academic grades predict performance in anatomy.

In 2013/14 online laboratory was modified to better facilitate student-teacher communication. Each lab was presented online by three teaching assistants. Content for each lab was divided into two smaller lessons (stations). The stations ran simultaneously in two virtual classrooms (Blackboard Collaborate breakout rooms) with a teaching assistant facilitating each. Students were divided into two groups and rotated through the breakout rooms. The third teaching assistant was logged into both breakout rooms to help participants address any issues unrelated to course content (e.g. technology problems). This format allowed the students to learn in smaller groups, and gave students the opportunity to interact with three teaching assistants in a given lab session. Survey participants (103 online; 280 F2F) were asked about their perceptions of learning in the online or F2F lab. Surveys will be analyzed to determine if the online laboratory modifications optimized student-teacher communication.
@InProceedings{ROGERS2014IMP,
author = {Rogers, K. and Attardi, S.},
title = {IMPROVING AN ONLINE UNDERGRADUATE HUMAN ANATOMY COURSE WITH LABORATORY: HOW CAN WE OPTIMIZE STUDENT-TEACHER COMMUNICATION?},
series = {7th International Conference of Education, Research and Innovation},
booktitle = {ICERI2014 Proceedings},
isbn = {978-84-617-2484-0},
issn = {2340-1095},
publisher = {IATED},
location = {Seville, Spain},
month = {17-19 November, 2014},
year = {2014},
pages = {5296}}
TY - CONF
AU - K. Rogers AU - S. Attardi
TI - IMPROVING AN ONLINE UNDERGRADUATE HUMAN ANATOMY COURSE WITH LABORATORY: HOW CAN WE OPTIMIZE STUDENT-TEACHER COMMUNICATION?
SN - 978-84-617-2484-0/2340-1095
PY - 2014
Y1 - 17-19 November, 2014
CI - Seville, Spain
JO - 7th International Conference of Education, Research and Innovation
JA - ICERI2014 Proceedings
SP - 5296
EP - 5296
ER -
K. Rogers, S. Attardi (2014) IMPROVING AN ONLINE UNDERGRADUATE HUMAN ANATOMY COURSE WITH LABORATORY: HOW CAN WE OPTIMIZE STUDENT-TEACHER COMMUNICATION?, ICERI2014 Proceedings, p. 5296.
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