Best Practices Research and Dissemination
- Study Overview
- Research Map
- Research Design
- Complete Listing of Office of Evaluation and Assessment Dissemination Activities
- Select Papers and Presentations of BOIP Findings
The Best Online Instructional Practices (BOIP) study, was initiated by the Office of Evaluation and Assessment (formerly Office of Evaluation Research and Grants, that was formerly the Institute of Research and Assessment in Higher Education—IRAHE) in order to explore and identify the practices and processes of effective teaching and learning in the online environment.
The guiding research questions for the study are:
- What are the teaching practices that are associated with faculty and student satisfaction, student persistence and success, and student learning outcomes?
- How do faculty best implement these practices?
The study is designed as a multi-phased and on-going research project. In summer 2001 the study was piloted with eight (8) instructors who were recipients of university distinguished teaching awards or who had consistently received high teaching evaluations. In the initial phase of the pilot, participating instructors profiled the extent of their own use of best instructional practices in a pre-determined archived course. Results indicated that the most highly endorsed principles are ones that focused on the processes of learning rather than on the assessment of their outcomes. In the second phase of the pilot, each faculty participant profiled the extent of use of best instructional practices by co-participants. As a result of this work, and feedback from the IRAHE Advisory Board, the instrument was modified to fit the online platform.
In phase II of the study, a new instrument was developed and administered to a representative sample of UMUC online faculty. While data collection and analysis for this project is continuous, select study findings will be disseminated through this site, publications, and presentations at national conferences.
Research Map (52KB pdf)
The study instrument, the Instructional Practices Inventory (IPI) was created based on instructional strategies identified in the online and face to face literature as effective teaching techniques and practices. IPI questions were used to determine how much and how well these strategies for effective course instruction were used in online classes. Using a combination of structured and open-ended questions, the instrument asked faculty to:
- Indicate their frequency of use, ease of use, and proficiency in the use of forty one teaching strategies
- Describe and suggest practices that could be recommended to colleagues
- Identify the challenges of online teaching
Faculty demographic data such as: subject matter expertise, years teaching online, extent of faculty training and development for teaching online, and level of confidence in online instruction were additionally captured.
Sample of Instructional Practices Inventory (228KB pdf)
(Instrument should not be reproduced or administered without the expressed written permission of OERG.)
Survey methodology through the use of the IPI elicited faculty perceptions of best teaching practices. Qualitative methods, specifically interviews focused on uncovering how faculty implemented online teaching strategies. Student course evaluation data were also analyzed to measure student perceptions of the effectiveness of the practices, as well as how faculty perceptions are correlated with course withdrawal and student success rates.
A stratified random sample was selected to represent schools (graduate and undergraduate), areas of discipline, students’ course evaluation, class enrollments, and level of course. 150 faculty members from the Adelphi campus of University of Maryland University College were invited to participate. The faculty members who were selected represented those who taught in the spring 2003 semester. A letter of invitation was sent to the faculty members and seventy six percent accepted the request and completed the research instrument which was posted in an online WebTycho course. After the data was analyzed, thirty faculty members were selected to participate in the interview phase though the use of criterion sampling. Faculty participants were selected based on their feedback on the IPI, which was highly confirmed by students in their classes. Student feedback was captured from qualitative and quantitative records of course evaluations.
- Lewis, C., and Abdul-Hamid, H. (2006). Implementing effective online teaching practices: Voices of exemplary faculty. Journal of Innovative Higher Education.
- Abdul-Hamid, H. and Lewis, C. (2005, October 27). Identifying effective online instructional practices in undergraduate and graduate level courses. Conference Proceedings, E-Learn 2005—World Conference on E-Learning in Corporate, Government, Healthcare, and Higher Education, Vancouver, Canada.
- Abdul-Hamid, H., Lewis, C., and Whitsel, C. (2005, August 5). Assessing online learning and effective teaching practices. Conference Proceedings, 21st Annual Conference on Distance Teaching and Learning, Madison, WI.
- Keeton, M. T. (2004). Best online instructional practices: Report of phase I of an ongoing study, Journal of Asynchronous Learning Network, 8 (2). Available at http://www.sloan-c.org/publications/jaln/v8n2/v8n2_keeton.asp.
- Abdul-Hamid, H. (2005, November 18). Best practices, faculty roles, and student engagement and learning. Presentation. The 11th Sloan-C International Conference on Asynchronous Learning Networks, Orlando, FL.
- Abdul-Hamid, H. and Dai, Y. (2005, October 28). Analysis of student course evaluation data in online courses: Factors affecting student satisfaction and learning. Presentation. Evaluation 2005: Crossing Borders, Crossing Boundaries, Joint AEA/CES Conference, Toronto, Canada
- Lewis, C. and Abdul-Hamid, H. (2005, October 27). Identifying effective online instructional practices in undergraduate and graduate level courses. Presentation. E-Learn 2005—World Conference on E-Learning in Corporate, Government, Healthcare, and Higher Education, Vancouver, Canada.
- Whitesel, C. Lewis, C. and Abdul-Hamid. H. (2005, August 5). Assessing online learning and effective teaching practices. Information Session. 21st Annual Conference on Distance Teaching and Learning, Madison, WI.
- Abdul-Hamid, H. and Lewis, C. (2005, April 12). Best practices of online teaching and learning. AERA Annual Conference, Montreal, Canada.
- Abdul-Hamid, H. and Schweber, C. (2004, November 13). Effective instructional strategies: Mainstreaming best practices. The Tenth Sloan-C International Conference on Online Learning, Orlando, FL.
- Lewis, C. and Abdul-Hamid, H. (2004, November 3-6). Implementing effective online teaching practices: Voices of exemplary faculty, ASHE 29th Annual Conference, Kansas City, MO.
- Keeton, M. T. and Nichols, D. (2003, September 26). Profiling instructional practices. Workshop. Maryland Higher Education Assessment Conference, University of Maryland University College, Shady Grove Center.
- Keeton, M. T. (2003, May 10). Enhancing instruction by the use of two principles of effective instruction. Workshop. Simpson College, IA.
- Keeton, M. T. and Sheckley, B. (2002, November). Principles of instruction for adults in higher education, Plenary at CAEL International Conference, Washington, DC.
- Abdul-Hamid, H. and Sander, K. W. (2002, November). Best online instructional practices: Self-report or peer review. Presentation at CAEL 2002 International Conference, Washington, DC.
- Collett, M., Keeton, M.T., Shayne, V. and Kenaszchuk, C. (2002, June 1-5). Best online instructional practices. Presented at 2002 Air Forum, Toronto, Canada.
- Collett, M., Keeton, M.T., and Shayne, V. (2002, April 1-5). Best online instructional practices: Phase I findings, American Educational Research Association (AERA) 2002 Annual Meeting, New Orleans, LA.