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The Need for Empirical Evidence as to What Facilitates Robust Learning Transcends Online Education and Community Colleges

Posted By: Richard Hake on January 25, 2008
 
Rebecca Cox, in her perceptive online article "Online Education as Institutional Myth: Rituals and Realities at Community Colleges," concludes that "Without empirical evidence about exactly how and under what specific conditions online processes facilitate robust learning, the promises of online education are unlikely to be realized at the community college. More generally, in my view, without empirical evidence about exactly how and under what specific conditions educational practices facilitate robust learning (whether online or in the classroom, and whether at the community or university level) the promises of education are unlikely to be realized. Instead of measuring pre-to-post test gains so as to definitively gauge student *learning* in a course, distance and classroom education researchers generally utilize *low-resolution* measures of students learning, such as student evaluations of teaching, student self-assessments, and teacher-made tests and course grades. I have recently discussed the virtues of pre/post testing and its proven track record in physics education, in an article "Can Distance and Classroom Learning Be Increased?" IJ-SoTL 2(1): January; online at .
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 The Need for Empirical Evidence as to What Facilitates Robust Learning Transcends Online Education and Community Colleges by Richard Hake on January 25, 2008
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