Are They Engaged? Strategies for Determining Student Engagement Online
As increasingly more opportunities become available for the delivery of online courses, concerns abound in academia regarding how best to involve and engage students as active learners. These issues prompted the authors to explore both instructor and student perceptions of engagement in terms of a survey and specific site statistics gathered from the learning management system (LMS) used in an online ethics course against students’ final course grades. Details emerged on both the frequency and process of synchronous chats required in the course; communication by students and instructor; and how the students felt ‘connected’ to the course, instructor or fellow students. Final statistical results also demonstrated a positive outcome in regards to final grades with total site activity as well as with chat activity (synchronous discussion) in the course.