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That Synching Feeling: An Exploration of Student Engagement in an Online Environment

Abstract

In response to the COVID-19 epidemic, universities were forced to shift to an online, remote delivery system. This paper presents the design and evaluation of two skills-based first-year units that were adapted to a predominantly asynchronous mode of delivery. The evaluation results indicate that student engagement was high, and that students felt well-supported by the strong teacher presence throughout their units. Furthermore, the impact of this engagement and support was evident in their final grades and the overall unit completion figures. These findings indicate that individualized support, teacher presence and flexibility are key factors in student success in an online environment. This suggests that asynchronous learning can be valuable to students from various academic backgrounds providing that the content and teacher are readily accessible in various formats and that the teachers are mindful of the complexities of students’ lives outside of an academic setting.

Published: 2021-09-13
Section:Online First
How to Cite
Kelly, K., & Lock, E. (2021). That Synching Feeling: An Exploration of Student Engagement in an Online Environment. Student Success, 12(2). https://doi.org/10.5204/ssj.1771

Author Biographies

Victoria University
Australia Australia

Dr Kate Kelly is a lecturer in the First Year College at Victoria University. She convenes, designs and teaches units focussed on clinical skills across the health science and allied health disciplines and employability based units to help prepare students as they transition students through and out of university. Her research interests include employability, curriculum design and the psychological impact of chronic disease. 

Victoria University
Australia Australia

Dr Edward Lock is a lecturer in the First Year College at Victoria University. Edward teaches a diverse range of students and is responsible for convening and designing the welcome to the Bachelor of Arts unit, that aids in transitioning arts students into university as well as an evidence based practice unit to health students. His research interests include curriculum design, course design, and employability teaching.

Open Access Journal
ISSN 2205-0795