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ISRN Nursing
Volume 2011 (2011), Article ID 649431, 6 pages
http://dx.doi.org/10.5402/2011/649431
Research Article

What Can Faculty Members and Programs Do to Improve Students' Learning?

School of Nursing, Memorial University of Newfoundland, 300 Prince Philip Drive, HSC H2916, St. John's, NL, Canada A1B 3V6

Received 2 August 2011; Accepted 18 September 2011

Academic Editors: N. E. Ervin, B. A. Gustafsson, and S. Keeney

Copyright © 2011 Alice P. Gaudine and Donna G. Moralejo. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

Abstract

Purpose. To understand what faculty members can do to improve students' learning, we explored (1) program and course characteristics important to students, (2) choices within courses students feel are important, and (3) students' perceptions of learning online. Background. Web delivery alters interactions among students and faculty, thereby changing the learning environment. Methods. Master of Nursing students currently enrolled in one graduate program were invited to participate in a web-based survey. Findings. The students valued (1) frequent feedback and interaction with the instructor, (2) organized, structured, and current content, (3) flexibility in deadlines and participation, (4) seamless navigation and technical support, and (5) choices in assignments. Students perceived their learning in online courses as less than if they had taken the course on campus. Conclusions. Professors can address some of the items identified by students as important, such as being flexible with due dates and expectations for participation in online discussion.