Thursday, January 26, 2012

North Carolina: Evaluation of online credit recovery

There's little research on the impact of online credit recovery programs so far. However, a recent North Carolina study does shed some light on teacher and student perceptions, as well as student success, in online credit recovery in that state.

While the report notes that "mastery rates" (successful completion of credit recovery) have been on the rise since the program's launch in 2008, fewer than 7 out of 10 students (67%) achieved mastery in summer 2010. Yet online credit recovery students seemed very pleased with the model, and identified specific approaches that supported their success. For example, students noted that teachers used various approaches to address the self-discipline issues that led many students to fail the course the first time around. Students also were very likely to agree or strongly agree on the presence of several key teaching quality indicators in their credit recovery programs:
  • "'My teacher does a good job teaching in the online environment.' 93.7% of CR (credit recovery students) agree/strongly agree"
  • "'My teacher provides timely and regular feedback on course assignments, assessments, and my progress.' 89.3% of CR agree/strongly agree"
  • "'My teacher provides content and assignments that address students' different levels of understanding.' 80.8% of CR agree/strongly agree"
  • "'My teacher provides or suggests strategies to help students succeed in this course.' 90.5% of CR agree/strongly agree"
Wow! The researchers also noted that credit recovery students were more likely than online general studies or honors students to agree/strongly agree on the presence of these teacher attributes in their courses. Would fewer students have been in credit recovery in the first place had their original teachers been creating a positive learning environment, providing student success strategies and differentiated instruction? Quite possibly. This study provides a toehold in the research on what students positively respond to in the online credit recovery environment.

No comments:

Post a Comment