The Impact of Instructor and Student Interaction in Internet-Based Courses

Kupczynski, Lori; Brown, Michelle Stallone; Davis, Rebecca
January 2008
Journal of Instruction Delivery Systems;Winter2008, Vol. 22 Issue 1, p6
While the interaction between the instructor and the student has long been a cornerstone of education, the advent of technology in education has expanded this traditional contact and moved it into cyberspace. In this new frontier, instructors are accessible in a different format than with face-to-face courses, and this may create a problem that must be solved. A review of literature focused on instructor accessibility in Internet-based classes concluded that an indepth descriptive research approach, utilizing a survey instrument, would serve as the best method for shaping student perceptions of instructor participation, specifically in the area of instructor accessibility and would add to the knowledge-base in this area of study. Thus, a study was conducted at a college in South Texas to determine if there was a statistically significant relationship between each of the six accessibility items, which include e-mail, discussion, chat, office phone, office hours for in-person consultation, and home phone for student motivation in online classes. The study found statistically significant relationships in all six areas and resulted in the conclusion that instructor accessibility does strongly enhance students' motivation to learn in Internet-based courses.


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