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Examining the Efficacy of a Course Design Template in an Online Program

30 minutes
Strategies for Administering Online Programs
Practices for Student Success
Higher Education
Effective Faculty/Professional Development Programs
Poster Presentation

The purpose of this research project is to examine the efficacy of implementing a course design template and instructional design model to core courses in a fully online RN-BSN program. Nine core RN-BSN courses were redesigned in a collaboration among faculty and instructional technologists, resulting in a common template design in the LMS, consistent navigation, some common content (e.g., discussion rubric, syllabus template), and a consultative design process. We conceptualized efficacy as the balance between the value of the new model and the investment required to implement it. We measured student behaviors, outcomes, and perceptions before and after the implementation of the new design through various data points. Faculty and instructional designers provided data on value and investment through descriptions of observations and perceptions in focus groups or an alternative survey. Analysis of the quantitative and qualitative data provided faculty and administrators valuable information on the value of the model compared to the investment, informing decisions on how to use existing resources to provide students with the best quality of education that is sustainable for faculty and instructional technologists. In the findings, qualitative themes emerged relative to both student and faculty outcomes. Students reported increased course clarity, and faculty reported increased application of adult learning pedagogy.


Alicia Swanson, Catherine Artac, Minnesota State University Moorhead; Julie Zaloudek, Century College