Academic journal article Journal of the Academy of Business Education

Student Attitudes towards Hybrid Business Classes: Lessons for Implementation

Academic journal article Journal of the Academy of Business Education

Student Attitudes towards Hybrid Business Classes: Lessons for Implementation

Article excerpt

INTRODUCTION

Previous work has examined the effect of providing short concept-focused online videos as a supplement to classroom lectures on students' exam scores [Lancellotti et al., 2015]. It was shown that students who had the option of watching online short concept-focused videos performed significantly better on the related exam than students who did not have that resource available to them. However, research has shown that a key driver of learning success in a digital environment is the expectations students have regarding the value of the digital components [Kilic-Cakmak et al., 2009]. The present research is designed to explore the antecedents to this process, specifically the extent to which students' attitudes towards the online videos noted above affect their success. In the study here we examine whether student characteristics and/or behavior affect attitudes towards using these online videos, and if such attitudes ultimately affect the extent to which the videos improve student learning. A key finding is that men and women differ in their attitudes towards, use of, and/or success in such a hybrid learning environment.

Prior work has shown that a variety of characteristics and behavior affect how well students do in the classroom, such as personality and cognitive traits [Arispe and Blake, 2012], the amount of interactivity among students and between students and faculty [Hollenbeck, 2011], and their level of satisfaction [Jackson and Helms, 2008]. The current work investigates the extent to which student characteristics and behavior-such as their gender, motivation, confidence, and actual usage of the videos-affects their attitudes towards online video modules, and ultimately whether such attitudes moderate the effectiveness of the online video modules on their exam scores. If students with different personal characteristics have differing attitudes towards the usefulness of the videos, then it may be that educators should take differing approaches to enhancing students' attitudes and encouraging the use of the videos.

Attitudes Towards Alternative Learning Mediums

Of primary importance in evaluating video and other alternative means of delivering classroom content, are the attitudes that students have towards such methods. Saunders and Hutt [2015] found that in a large-lecture setting, students most prefer full video lecture capture, followed by audio narration of slides. However, they found that students still value face-to-face lectures, and view the video/audio files as largely supplementary. Conversely, other researchers found that students generally find online lectures to be equivalent or even preferable to in-class lectures, in the case of large lecture hall courses [Navarro, 2015], undergrad information systems courses [Mok, 2014], and organic chemistry courses [Fautch, 2015]. Yet for a suite of freshman math courses Zack et al. [2015] found students had more negative views of courses in which the bulk of the content was delivered via video lectures compared to courses with content delivered via traditional in-class lectures, and Drouin [2014] found that offering content via online videos in introductory psychology courses led to lower in-class attendance and lower overall performance.

Clearly, definitive conclusions regarding students' attitudes towards such alternative-often referred to as hybrid or flipped-content delivery methods are difficult to make at this point. To say that students do or do not prefer such content delivery methods may be taking too simple an approach. It is likely that any of a number of variables moderate students' attitudes towards video content delivery, including personal and social factors, course subject and level, and perceived quality and approach of the information delivery-both in terms of the videos, and the in-person lectures they are being compared to. For instance, Brecht [2012] found differences in performance and attitudes based on the design of online video lectures, finding that videos that included graphics and sounds designed to offer relief from the tedium of straight lecturing were perceived to be more helpful by students, and resulted in overall higher outcomes. …

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