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CHALLENGES OF TEACHING ONLINE IN A MULTICULTURAL ENVIRONMENT: PERCEPTIONS, ATTITUDES AND STRATEGIES OF E-TUTORS

Nilsson, Kerstin (2013) CHALLENGES OF TEACHING ONLINE IN A MULTICULTURAL ENVIRONMENT: PERCEPTIONS, ATTITUDES AND STRATEGIES OF E-TUTORS. Masters thesis, Liverpool John Moores University.

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Abstract

This study is investigating the role of the online tutor in a multicultural environment. The result is a grounded theory which aims to increase the quality of online tutoring at University.

By using the open qualitative approach of the Grounded Theory (GT) methodology (Strauss & Corbin, 1994) within a field where little previous research has been undertaken the study sought to sample a wide range of experiences and views. Microscopic analysis centred on semi-structured interviews with both students and tutors of an online Masters programme at Liverpool John Moores University (LJMU), interviews with e-learning experts from LJMU and other institutions and a focus-group with staff involved in e-learning projects at LJMU. Throughout theoretical sampling, the method of constant comparison and a circular research process, approximately 400 codes and categories were created which formed the basis for the emergent grounded theory. Within GT the process of data collection and analyses are closely connected which each other (Strauss & Corbin, 1998); analysis of initially collected data got constantly compared with following findings on different levels of abstraction until an explanation of the investigated phenomena emerged.

Findings provide insights into perception and explanations of the situation of instructors at University who have to teach in a pure online environment. A theory emerged which details basically 1 central category: quality online teaching in a multicultural environment, 5 categorical aspects: awareness, workload, conditions, experiences, and perceptions as well as well as 4 subcategorical aspects: Institution, subject, stakeholders, and course design. Those categories and their relations to each other outline concepts which may help to better understand the situations of online tutors at University. As an additional outcome of the analysis a set of codes and categories have been created which may help to better manage and support effective online tutoring in an international environment at University by providing tasks, challenges and suggestions for improvement. In addition barriers have been uncovered which may hinder online tutors to realise identified suggestions for improvement. Based on these findings, a guideline for online tutors who have to teach in an international environment has been developed.

Research results offer moreover a profound basis for ongoing discussion and issues worth pursuing in the future by providing guides to action.

Item Type: Thesis (Masters)
Subjects: B Philosophy. Psychology. Religion > BF Psychology
L Education > L Education (General)
Divisions: Natural Sciences and Psychology
Date Deposited: 18 Oct 2016 08:43
Last Modified: 18 Oct 2016 08:43
Supervisors: Malinowski, Peter
URI: http://researchonline.ljmu.ac.uk/id/eprint/4536

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