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Internet Learning

Internet Learning

Abstract

Prior to implementing a voluntary, unofficial Quality Matters peer review process for online courses at our institution, several faculty members openly expressed concerns about the process. To systematically identify and examine how highly endorsed these beliefs actually were, we used the Theory of Planned Behavior (Ajzen, 1985) to investigate faculty beliefs and their plans to participate in the peer review. This behavior prediction model provided a logical theoretical basis for this investigation because it targets intentions to perform volitional behaviors and directly examines salient beliefs underlying attitudes, subjective norms, and perceived behavioral control toward the behavior. Though differences in belief endorsement between faculty members who chose to participate in the peer review and those who did not could not be tested statistically due to small sample sizes, a qualitative examination of the endorsement of the modal belief statements provided useful information about faculty members’ perceptions of completing the peer review. Our results indicated that many of the concerns and criticisms of the peer review process were not as highly endorsed as initially assumed. Our objective examination of faculty beliefs, instead of reliance on hearsay and a vocal minority, was useful in identifying genuine faculty concerns that could be directly addressed. Our data provided directions to guide administrative changes in our process to increase participation in internal peer reviews with the goal of improving the online course design quality.

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