Giannamore, Kathleen A. (2020, August 18). Aligning the necessary competencies for training and evaluating online teachers in higher education with Chickering and Gamson’s seven principles for effective undergraduate teaching: A Q methodology study. Doctoral dissertation (Educational Psychology/Instructional Technology), Kent State University.

Abstract: The purpose of this Q study was to align the competencies from years of research with the principles of good teaching practice as set by Chickering and Gamson in 1989 in order determine a categorical baseline for both training and evaluation of online teachers in higher education. Data was collected from students and faculty members with varying degrees of experience in online education. Participants were asked to sort competency statements using a forced distribution grid, followed by a post-sort interview. Data was analyzed using principal component analysis. The findings showed that while Chickering and Gamson’s 7 principles are still relevant as a standard for categorizing competencies for effective teaching, with regard to online teaching, additional principles are necessary. 12 categories in total were found to be necessary in order to properly train and evaluate online teachers. This research has important implications for stakeholders. First of all, it means that online teachers need to possess a wide variety of competencies in order to be effective. For the administrator, it means creating on-going training programs and supporting the efforts of online teachers to learn and grow. It also means consistent and meaningful evaluation of the teachers based upon those same categories of competencies. For online students, it means that the more of these competencies the teacher possesses, the more students will, in theory, meet course learning objectives. Finally, for parents and the community at large, schools that produce successful students who are ready to enter their chosen career field will attract even more students, more endowments and more support from both the local and global community.

Kathleen Giannamore <> is senior instructional designer and technologist, Franciscan University, Steubenville, OH.

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