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The Learning Conference 2003

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Presentation Details

 

Compressed Video Technology vs. Traditional Instruction: An Evaluation

Dr. Rigoberto Rincones-Gomez, Dr. Liliana Rodriguez-Campos.


This paper provides information for guiding distance education decision-makers in identifying effective strategies for improving distance education courses. In a report released on December 2000 by the National Center of Education Statistics, it was shown that from 1995 to 1998, the number of distance education programs increased by 72 percent. With universities’ increasing interest in distance education graduate programs that use interactive video technology, the variables related to successful distance education experiences needed to be examined. To address this need, an evaluation of a distance education and a traditional method of instruction was performed to assess students’ knowledge, attitudes and behaviors associated with a graduate course delivered via distance education using compressed video technology.
The graduate course examined in this paper is the EMR 640: Introduction to Research course. This is a graduate level course designed to develop skills in the fundamentals of research design and the uses and interpretations of research findings. Moreover, EMR 640 introduces the graduate student to many of the essential components necessary to carry out and evaluate research in the behavioral sciences. Topics include philosophy of science, finding and formulating research problems and questions, literature reviews and searches, basic concepts in measurement, sampling, ethical treatment of human subjects and qualitative and quantitative research methods and designs. Furthermore, by the end of the semester the graduate student has to demonstrate knowledge of: (1) the purpose and nature of scientific research; (2) how knowledge gained from scientific research differs from other types of knowledge; (3) how to formulate and articulate good research questions; (4) the differences among different types of variables in a research study; (5) the methods and techniques for establishing and evaluating research on various important criteria (e.g., reliability and validity); (6) how to access and critically review a body of literature relevant to a particular research question; (7) how to write a good literature review; (8) the most common forms of quantitative and qualitative approaches to research; (9) the strengths and weaknesses of various approaches, and how to balance them in practice (given the constraints at hand).
This paper outlines a formative evaluation plan for the EMR 640 graduate level course taught through distance education and traditional instruction. There are two categories of distance education delivery systems: synchronous instruction and asynchronous instruction. Synchronous instruction is defined as the real-time interaction among students and instructors (e.g., interactive TV, video conference, etc). Asynchronous instruction does not need the real-time interaction among students and instructors, and students are not required to be gathered together at the same location and time (e.g., web-based courses). In this case, the students choose their instructional time frame according to their schedules. The category of distance education delivery systems that is being used for the EMR 640 graduate course is the synchronous instruction.
The purpose of the evaluation is to assess the use of technology in teaching the EMR 640 graduate course by distance education, and to determine whether its use has been effective in transmitting the instructor’s instruction thus enabling the students to understand the course. Furthermore, this course is delivered using compressed video technology, where the video and audio information are processed by a codec (coder-decoder), electronic equipment, before it can be transmitted. There are five classrooms or regional sites in total; all these classrooms have at least two TV monitors and two video cameras. Also, a total of thirty-seven students conform the population of this study. These students have different minors and majors. For some of them, the course is required at the beginning of their programs, for others, it is required at the end.
This paper presents some useful criteria and guidelines that evaluators can use to evaluate compressed video technology. Also, it is intended to help distance learning practitioners to use, design, and select appropriate distance education methods. Therefore, in order to address multiple perspectives when evaluating distance education courses, two general evaluative criteria and four general domains are adapted and used in this formative evaluation. The criteria used for this evaluation are: efficacy and effectiveness. The efficacy criterion is defined as the relationship of achievement or capacity for producing a desired result. It is calculated by dividing the real results over the expected or planned results. The outcome measure domain (objective, subjective, and final course grade) is addressed by the efficacy criterion. On the other hand, the effectiveness criterion is defined as the relationship of impact or the positive influence on what students are perceiving (e.g., individual satisfaction with course content, delivery methods, etc). The technical, instructional, and ethical domains are addressed by the effectiveness criterion.
The results of this study offer insights regarding human and technological interactions. This formative study has both theoretical and practical implications for evaluation theory and practice, in general, and educational evaluation, in particular. The theoretical implications lie in its integrative approach to evaluation by combining innovative criteria and four general domains. The practical implications of the study lie in the potential to inform distance education decision-makers and instructors, regarding the methods, strategies, and general issues that have to be considered when planning and delivering a distance education course.

Presenters

Dr. Rigoberto Rincones-Gomez  (United States)
Evaluation Manager
Evaluation
Phillips Wyatt-Knowlton

Dr. Rigoberto Rincones-Gómez earned his Ph.D. in Evaluation, Measurement, and Research Design at Western Michigan University (WMU). As part of his educational background, he received his Bachelor's in Mechanical Engineering, and his Specialist and Master's degrees in Project Management in Engineering with Summa Cum Laude Honors. He also earned a WMU President's Special Recognition for his second Master's degree in Educational Leadership with a concentration in Evaluation, Measurement, and Research Design.

Dr. Rincones has been awarded with several honors and educational scholarships both in Venezuela, and the U.S.A. He has been a Training Manager, and a Consultant in the private sector, non-profit organizations as well as institutions of higher education. Dr. Rincones’ work history includes the formative evaluation of multi-national corporations and evaluation capacity building projects in Latin America, the Philippines, and the USA.

Dr. Rincones has designed and delivered numerous workshops and courses at the university level in evaluation, research, informatics, consulting, project planning, and control management. He has a variety of publications in Spanish and in English on leadership, and evaluation approaches that bring stakeholder groups together. He has presented his work in national and international conferences in countries such as China, Greece, Spain, USA, and Venezuela.
Currently, Dr. Rincones is the Evaluation Manager at Phillips Wyatt-Knowlton. He is also a member of several professional associations such as Project Management Institute, American Evaluation Association, Michigan Association for Evaluation, American Educational Research Association, and The International Society for Performance Improvement among others. He serves as a board member of the Michigan Association for Evaluation. Dr. Rincones’ expertise with project management, organizational engineering, program evaluation, multi-cultural and international evaluation capacity building, metaevaluation, needs assessment, training, and leadership are his strongest professional interests.


Dr. Liliana Rodriguez-Campos  (United States)
Faculty Member
Evaluation, Measurement, and Research
Western Michigan University

Dr. Liliana Rodríguez-Campos earned her Ph.D. in Evaluation, Measurement, and Research Design at Western Michigan University (WMU). As part of her educational background, she received her Bachelor's in Systems Engineering with Honorific Mention, and her Specialist and Master's degrees in Project Management in Engineering with Summa Cum Laude Honors. She also earned a WMU President's Special Recognition for her second Master's degree in Educational Leadership with a concentration in Evaluation, Measurement, and Research Design.
Dr. Rodríguez has been awarded with several honors and educational scholarships both in Venezuela, and the U.S.A. She has been a Planning and Control Manager, and a Consultant in the private sector, non-profit organizations as well as institutions of higher education. Dr. Rodríguez's work history includes the formative evaluation of multi-national corporations and evaluation capacity building projects in Latin America, the Philippines, and the US.
Dr. Rodríguez has designed and delivered numerous workshops and courses at the university level in evaluation, research, informatics, consulting, project planning, and control management. She has a variety of publications in Spanish and in English on leadership, and evaluation approaches that bring stakeholder groups together. She has presented her work in national and international conferences in countries such as China, Greece, Spain, U.S.A., and Venezuela.
Currently, Dr. Rodríguez is the Evaluation Faculty Member in the Department of Educational Studies at WMU. She is also a member of several professional associations such as Project Management Institute, American Evaluation Association, Michigan Association for Evaluation, American Educational Research Association, and The International Society for Performance Improvement among others. She serves as a member of the Professional Development Committee at the Michigan Association for Evaluation. Dr. Rodríguez's expertise with project management, organizational engineering, program evaluation, multi-cultural and international evaluation capacity building, metaevaluation, needs assessment, training, and leadership are her strongest contributions to WMU.

Keywords
  • Compressed Video Technology
  • Traditional Instruction
  • Evaluation



(Virtual Presentation, English)