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The Penn State Symposium for Teaching and Learning with Technology is both an annual event and a year-round online discussion of ways that faculty and staff are using technology to enhance teaching, learning, and research.

 the full conference website at http://symposium.tlt.psu.edu
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Saturday, March 21 • 1:45pm - 2:30pm
Finding Their Way: Student Perceptions in Navigating Online Course Interfaces

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From the outside, Penn State Online might seem like a single entity offering access to high-quality e-learning curricula to anyone across the globe. However, on closer inspection, online courses across the Penn State system are a diverse, dynamic collection of offerings with different designs and structures. Online course interfaces can look very different from college to college, and department to department. How do our online students perceive these divergent course interfaces? Does this diversity of design impact student learning? In this session, we will discuss findings from a survey of nearly 400 online students regarding course structure and the challenges of diverse user interfaces. Developed in collaboration with four colleges and the World Campus, and administered by the World Campus, this survey is the first of its kind to ask students the direct question: What, if any, challenges does the disparate nature of user interfaces present to students? We will provide an overview of the results, as well as detailed breakdowns by student age, campus, degree program, and experience with online learning. Finally, we will share our recommendations for addressing the most pressing student concerns.

avatar for Cathy Holsing

Cathy Holsing

Director, Learning Design, Penn State University
avatar for Lynne Johnson

Lynne Johnson

Manager of Instructional Design
avatar for Jane Keary-Thomas

Jane Keary-Thomas

Analysis and Planning Consultant, Outreach and Online Education, Penn State University
avatar for Wendy Mahan

Wendy Mahan

Senior Instructional Designer, Pennsylvania State University

Saturday March 21, 2015 1:45pm - 2:30pm
Room 208