Introduction to Distance
By: Dr. Shawn F. Clouse
School of Business
University of Montana
Introduction to Blackboard
Look at distance learning and SOBA’s program
Practice some basic blackboard skills.
Look at some Learning Theories and Instructional
Look at some Online Learning Research and
Defining Aspects Continued
Lack of quality research in the area of distance
learning (Phipps & Merisotis, 1999)
The No Significant Difference Phenomenon
Technologies used in 1997-1998 (Lewis, Snow,
Farris, & Levin, 1999)
58% Asynchronous Internet Instruction
54% Synchronous Interactive Videoconference
47% Asynchronous Pre-recorded videotapes
19% Synchronous Internet Instruction
Defining Aspects of Distance
Distance learning provides instruction in the
place and time convenient to the learners.
Market Size (IDC, 1999)
710,000 students in 1998
2.2 million expected in 2002
62% of 4-year universities offered distance
programs in 1998
84% expected in 2002.
History of Distance and Online
Learning at SOBA
Sole provider of MBA education in the
Montana University System
On-campus program stated in 1965
Off-campus program started in 1988
Online Foundation program started in 1997
7 Off-campus Locations
Mixed Model Delivery Formats
Delivered online through in-house designed
Two-way interactive videoconferences through
the Montana State Network called MetNet.
1-credit weekend courses in a traditional
UM has two Blackboard servers
GradNet platform is outdated and requires
considerable resources to maintain and operate.
DEOS-L - The Distance Education Online
Symposium Survey Monkey data
7.1% Lotus Learning Space
Supported by Microsoft
Help SOBA convert from “Home Grown”
online learning environment “GradNet” to the
Blackboard Course Management System.
First stage for GradNet classes.
Second stage with some regular classes.
Final stage open up platform to all SOBA
Training & Research Model
Introduction to the Blackboard Platform
Learning Theory & Instructional Design
Online Learning Research and Strategies
Participants develop and present learning modules
or units to the group.
Teach online course
Follow-up interview with participants
Objectives for SOBA’s Training
Train a small group of SOBA faculty on using the
Blackboard Course Management System
Explore how to redesign courses based on learning
theory, instructional design, and online learning
Work together as a learning community to help one
another develop strategies for online learning
Research the process to add to the faculty
development literature in the area of online learning.
“Materials themselves do not teach but
provide a medium that with appropriate use
can support learning,” (Oliver, Herrington,
and Omari, 1996). Accordingly, the instructor
must incorporate the organization,
presentation, and integration of materials into
the online environment.
What is Blackboard?
Course Development and Management System
Not a web authoring tool like Word, FrontPage or
Relational Database Design with web programming.
Communication and collaboration capabilities.
Online assessment engine with integrated gradebook.
Content sequencing and delivery.
Online resource gateway.
Tools to help teachers manage their online course and track
Standards based (Instructional Management System IMS,
Section 508, etc.)
Monitor and administer online learning environment.
Customize pages and interface.
Perform batch user enrollment of students.
Manage preferences for multiple courses.
Track usage and report statistics.
Issue system-wide announcements.
Communication tools built-in and configured by
Main Blackboard Page
My Institution Portal
Users can customize to own preferences.
Entry point for Blackboard Courses.
Access to Student Services.
Academic Web Resources.
Blackboard Course Screen
Student View vs. Instructor View
Logon to Blackboard
URL is blackboard.business.umt.edu or
My Institution Tools
Course Web Site Functions
Instructor Control Panel
Post course documents, staff information,
assignments, announcements, assessments
Incorporate text, spreadsheets, slideshows,
graphics, audio, video clips, and interactive
Create sequential Learning Units.
Types of Content
Announcements, Staff information, and External
Course Information, Course Documents,
Assignments, and Books.
Content can be organized in folders.
Names of areas can be changed.
Learning units are a special kind of folder
with a structured path through the content.
Used to organize other items, such as
documents, folders, assessments, etc.
Can require your students to follow a certain
Word processor - Microsoft Word
Presentation package – PowerPoint &
Spreadsheet - Excel
Web page authoring - FrontPage
Graphics package - Adobe PhotoShop
Video editing - Adobe Premiere
Multimedia development - Macromedia Flash
Blackboard Content Elements
Attach a document – Depends on user
having software to open the document
Put in HTML
Import whole websites
attach HTML documents
paste HTML into Blackboard pages
Type information into Blackboard Text
boxes (usually to introduce/describe your
HTML in Blackboard Text Box
Select View Source in the View Menu of
Word or View Source Tab of FrontPage.
Paste html (what lies between <body> tags,
using copy and paste) into text box.
Click “HTML” radio button.
Quizzes & Exams.
Learning Unit Feedback.
Instructor grades essay questions and enters
in the gradebook.
Surveys for formative and summative
assessments. Completion is anonymous.
To keep grades you MUST keep them
Linked to online assessments.
View by user, item, or spreadsheet.
Can manually enter an item and assign
grades in list by user or item.
Can export to Excel.
Weighted function requires all totals to be the
Click on ! in gradebook to grade essay
Saving a PowerPoint
Select Save as Web Page from File Menu.
Publish it to your computer.
Zip the folder that contains the presentation
Enter a course item for the presentation.
Select the zip file.
For special Actions select Unpackage these
Select the entry point to the presentation
Organized by Forums, Threads, and Messages.
Instructor must create Forums.
Can control who creates threads.
Can delegate student responsibility for facilitating
Can sort messages by author, subject, date or
Can create a Student Forum just for the students to
Can grade participation and archive the discussion.
Virtual Classroom (Chat Room)
Instructor and student view different.
Chat panel, Questions, User Information.
Participants see all of the discussion transcript
regardless of when they begin the chat.
Can use for virtual office hours.
Question & Answer area can be private or public
Can control who talks by giving the floor.
Can show slides or web sites.
Can archive discussion.
Digital Drop Box
Used to submit work to the instructor.
Used for group collaboration.
Can send email and files.
Can have discussions and chats.
Can grade and resend a file to a student.
Learning Theory &
Cognitive & Constructive Learning
Instructional Design Models
Strategies for Instruction
Eisner (1998) – The art and craft of
teaching. No science of teaching exists that
makes teaching routine. The teacher like
the artist must continue to develop their
skills for the technology enriched classroom.
Bloom (1956) Taxonomy
Knowledge -- Recall memorized information.
Comprehension --Grasp the meaning of material.
Application--Use learned material in new and
Analysis--Identify relationships and organization of
Synthesis--Put parts together to form a new whole.
Evaluation--To judge the value of material for a
Building Blocks of Learning
Creative Thinking Critical Thinking
Learning Styles & Preferences
Jung, Carl (1921)
Learning styles – Individuals have a style or type
that they prefer
Dunn & Dunn and Meyers-Briggs.
Felder (1996) – Learning styles 1) sensing/intuitive,
2) visual/verbal, 3) inductive/deductive, 4)
active/reflective, and 5) sequential/global.
These are types or preferences
Not the only way people learn
Frames of Mind 1983 and The Disciplined Mind 1999
Theory of Multiple Intelligences
Ecology & Environment
10% of what we read
20% of what we hear
30% of what we see
50% of what we see and hear
70% of what is discussed with others
80% of what we experience personally
95% of what we teach someone else
Source: William Glasser
Most models are based on Gagne’s work
Systematic way of designing instruction
Walter Dick & Lou Carey
Who are your learners and what are you trying to achieve
with your instruction?
Design and Develop
What are your objectives, and how will you structure and
organize the content of your learning material?
How will you assess the learners’ understanding and
whether or not they have met the objectives of the
Carry out the instructional sequence to deliver the
instruction you have developed.
Instructional Design Strategies
Develop based on learning objectives.
Know the level of learning desired (Bloom).
How to make students think about the
How to stimulate more than one of the
senses or intelligences.
Barker, Joel Arthur (1993, Paradigms: The
Business of Discovering the Future)
Paradigm – a set of rules and regulations that
establishes boundaries, and defines how to
behave inside the boundaries in order to be
Paradigm shift – a change in the fundamental
rules of the business, organization, or industry.
Paradigm pioneers are the initial adopters of the
Paradigm Paralysis – believing in the old
paradigm and not able to see the new one.
Seven Principles of Good
Practice in Education
Chickering and Ehrmann (1996)
1. Encourage contact between students and faculty
2. Develop reciprocity and cooperation among
3. Use active learning techniques,
4. Give prompt feedback,
5. Emphasize time-on-task,
6. Communicate high expectations,
7. Respect diverse talents and ways of learning.
Online Learning Research &
Source: 2001 Dissertation in the School of
On and Off-Campus students.
Asynchronous and Synchronous treatments
for lecture and discussion.
Description Day Night Total
N 37 20 57
Age 26.1 36.8 29.8*
Income over $30,000 10.8% 78.9% 33.9%*
Percent employed 73.0% 95.0% 80.7%*
Percent from towns
under 5000 10.8% 30.0% 17.5%*
Percent from cities
over 40,000 78.4% 20.0% 57.9%*
American Indian 5.4% 3.5%
Hispanic 2.7% 1.8%
White 86.5% 100.0% 91.2%
Other 5.4% 3.5%
Learning Style Distribution
ACT REF Totals
Total * 64.9% 35.1% 100.0%
On-Campus 67.6% 32.4% 100.0%
Off-Campus 60.0% 40.0% 100.0%
Total 64.9% 35.1% 100.0%
Total 73.7% 26.3% 100.0%
Total 59.6% 40.4% 100.0%
Extraverts Introverts Neutral Totals
57.9% 33.3% 8.8% 100.0%
52.6% 40.4% 7.0% 100.0%
73.7% 22.8% 3.5% 100.0%
77.2% 14.0% 8.8% 100.0%
Class vs. Population MBTI Distribution
% of Percent of
Titles Unique Ability Type Population Counts Students
Architect Logical INTP 1.00% 1 2.50%
Scientist, Builder Independent INTJ 1.00% 1 2.50%
Inventor Inventive ENTP 5.00% 3 7.50%
Fieldmarshal Commandeering ENTJ 5.00% 6 15.00%
Crusader Non-directive INFP 1.00% 0 0.00%
Author Empathic INFJ 1.00% 0 0.00%
Journalist Optimistic ENFP 5.00% 3 7.50%
Teacher, Catalyst Persuasive ENFJ 5.00% 2 5.00%
Entertainer Generous ESFP 13.00% 0 0.00%
Promoter Unpredictable ESTP 13.00% 0 0.00%
Disestablishment Artistic ISFP 6.00% 0 0.00%
Artisan Skillful with tools ISTP 6.00% 1 2.50%
Seller Harmonizing ESFJ 13.00% 1 2.50%
Administrator Hard-charging ESTJ 13.00% 11 27.50%
Loyal Loyal ISFJ 6.00% 1 2.50%
Trustee Strong & silent ISTJ 6.00% 10 25.00%
Totals 100.00% 40 100.00%
Conclusions for Performance with
Synchronous and Asynchronous
Improved student performance (8% to 9%) by
combining synchronous and asynchronous
methods for lecture and discussion.
Asynchronous lectures allow students to study
and review materials.
Asynchronous discussions allow students to
reflect on questions.
Mixed delivery works with the strengths of the
different interaction methods to improve
Conclusions & Recommendations
for Student Satisfaction
Strong student preference for traditional F2F lecture and
Instructors must work with students to change their paradigm for
delivery of lectures and discussions.
Incorporate elements that students like from synchronous
methods into asynchronous methods.
Students valued discussion interaction, but placed more
emphasis on interacting with content and the instructor during the
Skipping the opportunity to interact with content and the
instructor and moving directly into discussions is not the best
strategy to keep students satisfied with the learning experience.
Used NUD*IST 4.0 software for open and axial
coding (Strauss & Corbin, 1990).
Purposeful sample included students with strong
MBTI-E/I or ILS-S/G.
Found that students with moderate to weak types
and styles are the most receptive to the methods.
Themes related to issues facing students, instructor,
technology, interaction, and the learning community.
Interaction Theme Model
Access Technology Convenient Community Fun
Skill Student Reflection
Guide Instructor Moderator Interaction Focus
Transactional Distance Model
Low Distance High Distance
Provide students with the opportunity to learn
the technology prior to the learning activities
of the course.
Improve satisfaction with non-traditional
methods by developing a learning
Students do best with a mix of synchronous
and asynchronous lectures & discussions.
Social & fun
Use to develop a learning community.
Teacher must guide the discussion with some
Call on people by requiring them to raise their hand
by entering a $.
Instructor should prepare responses in advance in a
Have another resource open with the chat to
Helps get broader participation from all students.
Students get a chance to reflect.
Not very social.
Students saying the same things over and over.
Lack of immediate feedback.
Strategies for Asynchronous
Facilitator must check the area often, provide
frequent feedback, and ask probing
Facilitator should interject humor and get
students to check the area more often.
Have students act as facilitators.
Utilize to give more students the opportunity
Questions and Exercises