To create an emerging research institution, a regional university was created that spans multiple campuses within a radius of more than one hundred miles by merging at least three current institutions. The merge allowed the university to pool its human and technical resources. Students can now pursue new degrees that were not available before at one campus or another, take a newly available technical or specialty courses, and even select their own preferred professor when a course is offered by many faculty. In order to serve students at multiple campuses that are geographically far a part, the university instituted policies to facilitate accessibility of courses to all students while meeting prerequisites and minimum enrollment requirements. This paper chronicles the policies, procedures, and faculty efforts in creating a sustainable framework for implementing a distributed campus course delivery that is acceptable by the university/college administration, the department, the faculty, and most importantly the student. Our experience shows that a successful framework should address many issues, including: - Logistics o Where to offer the courses; one campus, all campuses. o Is transportation provided for student at a convenient time o Etc. - Scheduling o Schedule classes so that student can attend all their classes on-time without conflicts o Coordinate scheduling among campuses - Faculty incentives o Maintain good faculty-to-student ratio o Provide formula for workload computation o Provide teaching/grading assistance o Home campus course Attribution - IT support o Provide Interactive TV with high bandwidth o Allow for faculty-to-student interaction o Provide state-of-the-art class podium o Allow for class recording o Allow for in-office tutorials or Q/A session through collaboration - Course Management System Delivery Methods o Enable many productive tools in the course management system o Allow proper notification for the student - Assessment and student participation o Maintain interaction with student on daily and weekly basis o Compare results from both campuses to avoid any emerging issues. The paper will present our efforts in each of the above areas, showing that despite the challenges faced, a distributed delivery system can be successful when the above issues/factors are adequately addressed. The results from our courses at the graduate and undergraduate levels show that students assessments don’t show any significant difference across campuses or based on where the home campus of the faculty is. By presenting our study, we hope that other institutions who are considering distributed education can benefit from our experience by adopting best practices while avoiding pitfalls.
Quweider, Mahmoud K.; Qubbaj, Ala; Zhang, Liyu; Khan, Fitratullah; and Lei, Hangsheng, "A Holistic Approach for Enhancing Distributed Education with Multi-Campus Course Delivery Methods" (2019). Computer Science Faculty Publications and Presentations. 29.
2019 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition