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Student Progress In Distance Education Courses: A Replication Study


Kember, D and Lai, T and Murphy, D and Siaw, I and Yuen, KS, Student Progress In Distance Education Courses: A Replication Study, Adult Education Quarterly, 45, (1) ISSN 0741-7136 (1994) [Refereed Article]

DOI: doi:10.1177%2F0741713694045001003


A crucial test of the veracity of any theoretical model is replicability. This article describes a replication study of a model of student persistence in distance education. The model had its origins in the influential work of Tinto (1975), as reformulated by Kember (1989) for the special circumstances of distance education students. The essence of the model is that social and academic integration of students are viewed as intervening variables between initial background characteristics and outcome measures (i.e. academic achievement and persistence). A quantitative test of the model, using a Distance Education Student Progress (DESP) inventory developed for this purpose, has been reported (Kember, Murphy, Siaw, & Yuen, 1991). To further test the model, especially in terms of its replicability, minor modifications were made to the DESP inventory in the light of the original findings, and it was applied to a different set of institutions, courses and students. The second study has resulted in a similar path model for student progress. Comparison of the significant paths between the academic and social integration variables and the outcome variables shows a notable degree of similarity between the models. Reliability values for the majority of the sub-scales identified in the original study have improved in the replication. Both studies have revealed the importance of social and academic integration to student progress in distance education. As such, the studies provide a useful framework for further study of what motivates distance education students to persist in their studies.

Item Details

Item Type:Refereed Article
Research Division:Education
Research Group:Specialist studies in education
Research Field:Learning sciences
Objective Division:Education and Training
Objective Group:Learner and learning
Objective Field:Learner and learning not elsewhere classified
UTAS Author:Kember, D (Professor David Kember)
ID Code:129795
Year Published:1994
Deposited By:Education
Deposited On:2018-12-18
Last Modified:2018-12-18

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