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Student Perceptions of Experiences of Interaction in Online Graduate Education Course

, Marywood University, United States

Marywood University . Awarded


This phenomenological study investigated student perceptions of experiences of interaction in online graduate education courses. The researcher aimed to better understand the importance of interaction to students involved with online graduate education courses. The purposive sample included fifteen graduate students who had completed at least one fully online course in the field of education. Participants were pursuing a first or additional graduate degree in an area of teacher certification or school administration, or had enrolled in online graduate education courses for purposes of professional development. A qualitative approach was utilized to conduct semi-structured telephone interviews, which were recorded and transcribed. Participants described their perceptions of their experiences of interactions in online graduate education courses, and comparisons of online versus face-to-face interactions emerged. Further, participants shared thoughts and experiences with technology difficulties and individual learning styles in an online graduate course environment. It was through these discussions that interaction and its importance as an element of online learning design developed. The findings of this study resulted in three conclusions related to online learning design: the need for training (orientation session for first time online learners), student desire for strong instructor communication (including explicit student expectations), and situations for interaction (student to student, instructor to student, and student to instructor).


Pugh, D. Student Perceptions of Experiences of Interaction in Online Graduate Education Course. Ph.D. thesis, Marywood University. Retrieved December 5, 2019 from .

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