Defense Date


Graduation Date

Spring 2003


Immediate Access

Submission Type


Degree Name



Instructional Leadership Excellence (ILEAD)


School of Education

Committee Chair

William P. Barone

Committee Member

Lora Shapiro

Committee Member

William Switala


internet, online education, professional development


This study investigated the training that faculty receive to teach undergraduate mathematics courses online and the effectiveness of that training. An online survey was distributed to 64 faculty who taught undergraduate mathematics courses online. In responding to the survey, faculty supplied information about the duration, topics, and types of training they received both before and after beginning to teach online, about their use of best practices for online education, and about their attitudes toward online education. Subsequent to completion of the survey, four focus group interviews were conducted with a total of 14 of the survey respondents. During focus group interviews faculty described both the technical and pedagogical training they received to teach online, identified components critical to the success of online courses, and described the training that should be required before faculty begin to teach online. Results of the study demonstrate that most faculty do not receive adequate training to teach online. 23% of participants received no training before beginning to teach online. Participants received more technical training, particularly training to use course management systems, than pedagogical training. Only 20% of participants received training in active learning or fostering student collaborations online before they began to teach online and 29% of survey respondents received no pedagogical training of any type before beginning to teach online. Results of the study demonstrate that faculty should receive both technical and pedagogical training before beginning to teach online. Some portion of training to teach online should be delivered online so that faculty experience online learning from the student point of view. Training programs should also include a mentoring component so that faculty new to online teaching can benefit from the experience of their colleagues.