MIXED METHODS EVALUATION OF AN ONLINE UNDERGRADUATE SYSTEMIC HUMAN ANATOMY COURSE WITH LABORATORY
Western University (CANADA)
About this paper:
Appears in: INTED2014 Proceedings
Publication year: 2014
Page: 2393 (abstract only)
Conference name: 8th International Technology, Education and Development Conference
Dates: 10-12 March, 2014
Location: Valencia, Spain
Abstract:An online section of a Systemic Human Anatomy course 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. Student performance measures (4 tests, 24 lab quizzes) were statistically identical between sections. Incoming grade averages were strongly correlated to overall anatomy grade in both F2F (r = 0.70, p < 0.01) and online (r = 0.63, p < 0.01) sections, suggesting that prior academic performance, and not course format, predicts performance in anatomy. Interviews (22 online; 38 F2F students) and surveys (270 F2F students) regarding perceptions of the learning experience were conducted following a cross-over period that exposed students to both formats. Survey results indicate 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. A content analysis of interview transcripts is being undertaken to generate grounded theory about the strengths and weaknesses of the online course.
Keywords: Online distance education, computer assisted instruction, online lecture, online laboratory, instructional evaluation, human anatomy, undergraduate.