Title

Instructor Satisfaction and Attitude Toward Online Instruction

Date of Award

2005

Degree Type

Dissertation

Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)

Department

Biological Sciences

First Advisor

Kenneth J. Curry

Advisor Department

Biological Sciences

Abstract

The purpose of this study was to investigate satisfaction and attitude toward online instruction of instructors who teach courses completely online at 11 colleges and universities of eight southern states of the United States of America. The Satisfaction and Attitude Questionnaire was developed and used to explore instructor satisfaction and attitude. One hundred and seventy two usable surveys were returned. The instructors were found to be very satisfied and have moderately positive attitudes toward online instruction. Instructors who had been teaching online courses for over one year were found to be more satisfied and have a more positive attitude toward online instruction than instructors who were teaching for less than a year. Instructors were most satisfied with being able to reach students who would not have been able to take their course in the traditional setting and the flexibility of communicating with the students at their convenience. Instructors were least satisfied with the motivational level of the students and the quality of their work. Instructors were most positive about online instruction allowing a convenient way to deliver course material and about online courses being worth the trouble to develop. Findings indicate that most of the instructors felt that online instruction required more work or about as much work as traditional classes. Instructors did not seem to be very concerned about cheating and the features that were most frequently used include email, asynchronous/discussion thread, tracking of students, multiple choice and calendar. The features that were least used include synchronous chat, glossary and group presentation. The instrument used in this study was found to be effective in ascertaining the overall satisfaction and attitude of online instructors toward online instruction while at the same time highlighting areas that were sources of satisfaction/dissatisfaction and positive/negative attitudes. Thus it is very useful in providing feedback on instructor feelings which could impact the health of a program and/or institute. Furthermore, it provided valuable feedback on the features of the course management platform that were deemed to be useful by instructors for online instruction.