Online education has become an increasingly popular means of delivering educational programs in health and kinesiology. It has helped departments meet increasing enrollment demands and provided additional resources that support students and faculty. A number of challenges, however, are associated with developing these types of programs. The purpose of this paper is to discuss some of the issues that Texas A&M University has experienced in developing extensive online courses and distance education programs. The paper discusses methods and models employed to develop online and distance programs in health and kinesiology and provides a case study of some of the opportunities and challenges that the Sport Management Division experienced in developing an online master's program. Issues related to efficacy, management, funding, and student success are discussed. Health and kinesiology administrators should consider these issues as they look to develop or grow online course offerings in the discipline.
Paul Keiper and Richard B. Kreider
Diane L. Gill, Pam Kocher Brown, and Erin J. Reifsteck
The online EdD in kinesiology at UNCG evolved from the face-to-face EdD, which was designed as an interdisciplinary doctoral degree tailored to working professionals in kinesiology. The new online EdD, which is the only online doctoral program in kinesiology, retains that broad, interdisciplinary curriculum and focuses on developing practicing scholars in kinesiology teaching, leadership, and advocacy. The fully-online EdD program faces many challenges, including technology issues, faculty buy-in, retention, and dissertation completion. To meet those challenges, the EdD curriculum is structured in a four-year cohort model, emphasizing collaboration and connections from the initial campus orientation session through the dissertation defense.
Mary E. Rudisill
Over the past 35 years, institutions of higher education have been involved in strategic planning in an attempt to promote their priorities and remain competitive in challenging economic times. Efforts have been made to improve the process and effectiveness of strategic planning over those years. Although strategic planning can be effective, the plan must be created properly and also implemented in an effective manner. Since online learning has become an increasingly important revenue source for many institutions of higher education, as well as an alternative way to provide instruction to students, it is typically included within institutional strategic plans and prioritized for growth. Ensuring that faculty “buy-in” to this goal and strategic priorities requires significant faculty engagement. In this paper, options for implementation and ways to promote engagement are discussed within a case study of how Auburn University kinesiology faculty took part in educational transformation and innovation by connecting to the campus mission.
Andrew P. Driska and Daniel R. Gould
Research has shown that coaches learn through reflective practice (Trudel & Gilbert, 2006), that communities of practice can assist the reflective process (Culver & Trudel, 2008), and that problem-based learning can increase critical thought by coaches (Jones & Turner, 2006). To help coaches develop reflective practice skills in an online course, the authors designed and implemented a novel assignment combining the principles of a community of practice with problem-based learning. Small groups of students were presented with a problem scenario and then met synchronously online using a low bandwidth group chat application (EtherPad) to diagnose the problem, strategize, and outline a solution. Students were able to conduct group meetings with only minor technical diffculties, and their written work demonstrated that a moderate level of refection had occurred. Future assignment redesigns should allow more opportunities for student-instructor interaction to facilitate greater development of student reflective practice skills.
Stephen M. Roth
Higher education faculty have many responsibilities, with teaching as arguably the most public of those yet also the task for which many are least prepared. Professional development around teaching and learning can provide faculty with the knowledge and skills needed to improve student learning while also improving job satisfaction. The present paper describes the use of faculty learning communities as a best practice for professional development around teaching. Such communities engage a group of participants over time and provide a way to impart knowledge and resources around teaching and learning, encourage application of new skills in the classroom, and evaluate and refect on the effectiveness of those trials. Research shows that time spent in faculty learning communities translates into improvements in both teaching effectiveness and student learning. Resources are provided for administrators interested in developing and supporting faculty learning communities around teaching and learning.
Jared Russell, Danielle Wadsworth, Peter Hastie, and Mary Rudisill
The purpose of this paper is to describe the precursors to and development of the School of Kinesiology's portal, which is used to deliver multimedia content to the approximately 7,000 students annually enrolled in physical activity and wellness program courses. Grounded in research, the paper addresses the initial rationale for changing the physical activity program focus, the implementation of a new delivery system of course content, and the benefits to students and instructors that have been realized. Research possibilities are also outlined. The paper concludes with an examination of issues that faculty at other institutions might consider when developing an online component within their physical activity and wellness programs.
Jaye K. Luke and Joanna L. Morrissey
Many universities have limited resources yet aim to provide worthy learning opportunities to their students. This goal can be met through the offering of alternative delivery methods and service learning. Alternative delivery methods have evolved as technology has advanced. This paper addresses the benefits of blended learning for students, faculty, and universities. Through an institutional grant emphasizing innovative teaching strategies, the authors explain how a kinesiology course that includes service learning was transformed from a face-to-face class to a blended learning environment. Two flagship assignments are explained and comments from students are shared.
Kim C. Graber and Wojtek Chodzko-Zajko
The purpose of this article is to provide background information related to the development of the 2014 American Kinesiology Association (AKA) Leadership Workshop titled “The Future of Teaching and Learning in an Online World”. A brief description of online education is provided, along with a synopsis of the advantages and challenges confronting instructors and administrators in institutions of higher education who are increasingly implementing this form of instruction. An overview of the articles included in this special issue is also provided.
Jinhong Jung and Todd A. Gilson
The rapid growth of technology allows tertiary-level education to develop alternative ways of instruction to effectively support student learning. Although a face-to-face class is still powerful, online learning has been advocated as an innovative instructional way to confront constraints such as distance, time, space, and diverse student characteristics. This article introduces a brief overview of online threaded discussion (OTD) in a blended course in physical education teacher education (PETE), and provides insights into how to effectively design, manage, and teach online courses. In particular, contextual information that relates to a specific university, PETE program, course, and students are discussed in this article. Second, the blended model and OTD implemented by the authors are introduced. Finally, the article discusses the blended model's contributions, issues, and strategies, and provides implications for physical educators to improve their online courses in higher education settings.
Ryan Charles Luke and Jaye K. Luke
At many institutions introductory exercise physiology courses are required for all kinesiology students. The laboratory portion of these courses usually involves development of knowledge, skills, and abilities (KSAs) connected with content presented in lecture. Due to scalability issues, the Kinesiology Department at California State University Monterey Bay cannot offer traditional laboratory experiences. Therefore, online and hybrid laboratory experiences were created to provide similar opportunities for students, address scalability issues, and enhance student engagement and learning. Creation of these carefully crafted laboratory experiences allowed instructors to (a) highlight and explain key foundational principles, (b) provide experiences involving practical application of material presented in lecture, and (c) present students with additional learning experiences while maintaining high learner expectations. The following article outlines the process used to create these virtual laboratory experiences for students in an undergraduate introductory exercise physiology course.