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Completion Rates – A False Trail to Measuring Course Quality?: Let’s Call in the HEROEs Instead
Linnaeus University, The University Library.
Linnaeus University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of pedagogy.
2013 (English)In: European Journal of Open and Distance Learning, ISSN 1027-5207, E-ISSN 1027-5207, Vol. 16, no 2, 40-49 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Statistics are often used to reveal significant differences between online and campus-based education. The existence of online courses with low completion rates is often used to justify the inherent inferiority of online education compared to traditional classroom teaching. Our study revealed that this type of conclusion has little substance. We have performed three closely linked analyses of empirical data from Linnaeus University aimed at reaching a better understanding of completion rates. Differences in completion rates revealed themselves to be more substantial between faculties than between distribution forms. The key-factor lies in design. Courses with the highest completion rates had three things in common; active discussion forums, complementing media and collaborative activities. We believe that the time has come to move away from theoretical models of learning where web-based learning/distance learning/e-learning are seen as simply emphasizing the separation of teacher and students. Low completion rates should instead be addressed as a lack of insight and respect for the consequences of online pedagogical practice and its prerequisites.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2013. Vol. 16, no 2, 40-49 p.
Keyword [en]
completion rates, course design, online courses, web-based education
National Category
Research subject
Pedagogics and Educational Sciences
URN: urn:nbn:se:lnu:diva-29094OAI: diva2:652156
Available from: 2013-09-30 Created: 2013-09-30 Last updated: 2014-12-17Bibliographically approved

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Creelman, AlastairReneland-Forsman, Linda
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