Assessing the Effectiveness of an On-line Computer Science Course

S.T. Karamouzis (USA)


Evaluating Learning and Teaching, Teaching Methods,On-line Instruction.


Though on-line technologies are rapidly becoming core components of the instructional experience of students little descriptive information exists to address the basic question about the effectiveness of on-line education as a delivery mechanism of computer science content. This article provides an effectiveness assessment of an on-line computer science course. The assessment methodology included a subjective and an objective dimension. The subjective methodology aimed at eliciting students' personal opinions on the effectiveness of the on-line instruction. The objective methodology aimed at establishing instructional effectiveness that is removed from personal opinions by contacting a statistical analysis comparing the final grade distributions of two sets of students that attended the same computer science content, one using the on-line delivery method and the other using the in-class delivery. Results indicate that students' perceived effectiveness of the on-line delivery is equal or higher to other traditional in-class courses. Similarly, no statistically significant difference was found between the final grade distributions of the on-line and in-class students.

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