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Abstract

Avondale College of Higher Education has been offering tertiary courses for over 120 years. In the past two decades, this institution has extended its programs to include distance courses for students who opt to study online or are not able to attend on-campus courses at Avondale’s Lake Macquarie and Sydney campuses. While all of the institutions courses are evaluated on a regular basis, no formal evaluation had ever been undertaken of the distance education program as a whole. During 2017, a mixed methods research project was conducted to gather evaluative data from recent and current distance students using questionnaires and focus groups. The results of the study provide insight into the extent to which the distance education program at the College provides a space in which learning relationships can develop in online communities. Also, suggestions for future improvement and further research recommendations are provided. Findings of this study may be of interest to educators and administrators who incorporate online components in their curricula.

Avondale Research Centre

Christian Education Research Centre

Avondale Research Centre

Centre for Advancement of the Scholarship of Teaching and Learning

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