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What is Program Structure

Driving Innovation With For-Profit Adult Higher Education Online Institutions
Established standards related to the start and end dates for a course, assignment due dates, and the use of synchronous versus asynchronous methods.
Published in Chapter:
For-Profit Online Learning: The Student Experience
Jessica Kennington (Capella University, USA)
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-7998-9098-0.ch013
This chapter explores the author's experience as an online student at the master's and doctoral levels. This autoethnographic study discusses her experience with academic support, the curriculum and teaching methods, and how the author worked through her dissertation without meeting her mentor or committee members in person. The author also discusses how she overcame challenges, such as competing priorities and feeling isolated due to the lack of in-person contact. The chapter aims to provide a guideline for other online students that may help them through similar circumstances and provides recommendations for how academic administrators can adjust curriculum and resources to improve the student experience. Key factors related to the author's success were determined to be time management skills and the ability to be a self-directed learner. Recommendations include flexible program structures, assignment and grading rubric alignment, experiential learning project incorporation, and earlier interactions with potential mentors.
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