Current Projects

Graduate Students’ Perceived Value of Learning Resources in Learning the Content in an Online Course

Primary Investigator: Mary Wilhelm-Chapin
Advising Investigator: Tiffany A. Koszalka
Context: Graduate course in project management

This descriptive pilot study is aimed at understanding how students interact and engage with learning resources to help them learn course content. Graduate students in an online project management course describe how they interact and engage with learning resources at two points during the semester. Student responses will be reviewed for (1) characteristics of resources students found contributed to their learning, (2) changes in use between the two points in time, and (3) differences in how resources were seen as contributing to student learning of the content. Possible application of study results to enhance instructional design of online learning environments will be discussed.


Graduate Students’ Perceived Value of Learning Resources in Learning the Content in an Online Course

Primary Investigator: Abdulrahman Alogaily
Advising Investigator: Tiffany A. Koszalka
Context: Graduate students studying research

This study will strive to design and test a single concept map organizer to assist graduate research students in increasing their comprehension and utilization of research design concepts and methodological practices that will help better prepare them for the rigors of research in their academic and professional careers. The research methods for this study are varied according to task. In the research phase, the best information available will be appraised to discover the elements needed to create the most effective learning tool for a single concept map organizer, and then the model will be created based on the findings. The tool will be refined through the Delphi Decision Making Process, first the experts in research methods, instructional designers, and graphic experts that will help appraise the elements of the learning tool. This research will provide the educational field with a valuable learning tool that has reliability and validity and will engage research students in the learning process, keeps their attention, stimulates their motivation, helps them encode and organize content, and enables them to feel control and mastery over their own learning process.


Self-Regulated Learning and Learning Resource Use in an Online Spanish Course

Primary Investigator: Christopher D. Hromalik
Advising Investigator: Tiffany A. Koszalka
Context: Community college

This qualitative study is investigating how students of an introductory Spanish language course at a two-year public community college self-regulate their learning during the use of the learning resources of an online language course. The investigators are looking for patterns in the way students self-report their use of the course learning resources, with a goal of better understanding how the use of learning resources is reflected in the work that students produce. This study aims to provide information about 1) how students use the digital learning resources of an online course; 2) the self-regulated learning strategies students employ while using the digital learning resources; and 3) the characteristics of the use of the learning resources of students who are most successful at completing speaking tasks in an asynchronous online learning environment, as well as the strategies they employ. To answer the research questions, a thematic analysis is being conducted on student course assignments, including reflection journals and speaking assignments. Blackboard activity data are also being analyzed.


A Qualitative Study of Asynchronous Online Discussion in a Graduate Level Online Course

Primary Investigator: Tianxiao Yang
Advising Investigator: Tiffany A. Koszalka, Dr. Jing Lei
Context: Graduate course in educational technology

This study aims to explore what happened in an asynchronous online discussion forum of a fully online course for graduate students. The investigators are looking for 1) how students facilitated asynchronous online discussions differently; 2) how students engaged in conversations with each other in the asynchronous online discussions; 3) whether students achieved higher levels of thinking in the asynchronous online discussions; and 4) whether students engaged with the instructional content from the learning resources in the asynchronous online discussions. Asynchronous communication scripts are being created to help the investigators observe how students facilitated or participated the conversations. And content analysis is being used to analyze whether the postings demonstrate higher levels of thinking while relate to the learning resources in this course.