In a time where internet is everything, it was not unexpected to see the increase of online alternatives to university and changes to the submission process over recent years. Laptops and 24/7 internet access are slowly becoming an almost compulsory part of many courses as quizzes and assessments are dealt with online.
And University of Wollongong is no exception to this rule, having many online based resources including Moodle’s Echo360 (online lecture recordings), this tool gives students a lot of freedom to attend university on their terms, rather than the strict guidelines once set. I, myself, have even started relying on Echo360 due to working commitments. This got me thinking about in our fast-paced world, where we need to balance work, university, social life, exercise and sleep, do we like these ‘easier’ online options?
Which ultimately lead me to my research project question:
How do current university students feel about the increase of online resources and assessments, in comparison to physical classes and submissions of previous years? And the increase in options relating to online courses via correspondence compared to physical campus courses?
I imagine in my research I will find majority preferring this option, as they can submit from home and it also generally means later deadline. Though, I am hoping some challenge this and still prefer handing in work physically so there is no chance of technical difficulties.
I aim to find out the opinions from students about the availability of online courses and the advantages/disadvantages of them, compared to their opinions on face-to-face learning situations. I think this is an important research project as the increase of technology is shaped the way individuals learn and is changed the dynamics of the educational system for so many people and the nature of this should be explored to see how different opinions vary for different age brackets, majors and backgrounds in general. I aim to use surveys from Survey Monkey as my main source of information to gain a well-rounded response pool. These questions may range from ‘Yes and No’ to short responses, these questions may include tutors for their opinions as well.I will then research the statistics in relation to the enrolments of online course in recent years and compare them to those of physical university courses and see if there is a recurring pattern.