Effectiveness of Personal Interaction in a Learner-Centered Paradigm Distance Education Class Based on Student Satisfaction

Summer 2008

Source: Journal of Research on Technology in Education, Volume 40 Number 4, Summer 2008

(Reviewed by The Portal Team)

This study determined whether there was a relationship between students' perceptions of how effective course-related interaction was and their level of course satisfaction. A Students’ Perceived Interaction Survey (SPIS) instrument was developed to examine nine separate hypotheses about the nature of course-related interaction.
A volunteer sample of 855 students from the 949 students enrolled in Computer Science 103—Computer Literacy and Applications at Iowa State University in the fall of 2005 was used.

Purpose of the Study

This study served three purposes:
1. To identify the relationships between student-instructor personal interaction and course satisfaction, student-TA personal interaction and course satisfaction, student-content interaction and course satisfaction, and student-student personal interaction and course satisfaction.
2. To identify the relationship between students' perceptions about the effectiveness of WebCT features for their learning and course satisfaction.
3. To identify the relationships between course satisfaction and specific student demographics such as gender, academic classification, and prior distance education course experiences.

This study employed a multiple linear regression.
It concluded that student-instructor personal interaction, student personal interaction, and student-content interaction, along with students’ perceptions of WebCT features and gender were predictors of course satisfaction.
In this study 94% of the participants indicated they were satisfied with the course.
No significance was found in the relationships between student satisfaction and student-teaching assistant (TA) personal interaction, the student’s prior partial online distance education experience, the student’s prior entirely online distance education experience, and academic year.

Updated: Nov. 02, 2008