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Access Barriers to Distance Education Perceived by Inservice and Preservice Career and Technical Education Majors

American Vocational Education Research Association Annual Meeting,


The access barriers to distance education faced by inservice and preservice career and technical education (CTE) majors were examined through a survey of 76 students enrolled in undergraduate- and graduate-level CTE education programs. Completed questionnaires were received from 60 students (response rate, 78.9%). Forty respondents worked full-time; only one was not working. The predominant institutional access barrier identified was difficulty scheduling required "general education" courses. Other highly ranked institutional access barriers included library access, lack of ongoing advising, and technical assistance for problem-solving technology/computer-based issues. Class registration and ease of obtaining grades were not cited as significant institutional access barriers. Job conflict was the highest-ranked student access barrier. Sources of job conflict included the competing interests of students' jobs and the requirements of the classes they were taking, lack of employer support, the issue of family support, and time conflicts. Personal technical competence, tuition costs, or personal financial situations were not highly ranked as student access barriers. The study recommendations included calls for the following items: better coordination of course offerings; library systems whose technological accessibility matches that of the distance courses themselves; more sensitivity to distance students' advising needs; additional competent technical support; and instructor recognition of distance learners' job responsibilities and issues. (Contains 13 references.) (MN)


Zirkle, C. (2001). Access Barriers to Distance Education Perceived by Inservice and Preservice Career and Technical Education Majors. Presented at American Vocational Education Research Association Annual Meeting 2001. Retrieved February 27, 2021 from .

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