VISTAS Online is an innovative publication produced for ACA by Dr. Garry R. Walz and Dr. Jeanne C. Bleuer of Counseling Outfitters, LLC. Its purpose is to provide a means of capturing the ideas, information and experiences generated by the annual ACA Conference and selected ACA Division Conferences. Papers on a program or practice that has been validated through research or experience may also be submitted. This digital collection of peer-reviewed articles is authored by counselors, for counselors. VISTAS Online contains the full text of over 900 proprietary counseling articles published from 2004 to 2017.
A Survey of Online Learning as Perceived by Graduate Counseling Students by Race and Gender and Recommendations for Online Teaching
Kananur V. Chandras, Sunil V. Chandras, and David A. DeLambo
Online learning is an important tool to assist instructors accomplish their goal of developing counseling students’ skills and knowledge, and promote both an independent and creative thinking student. Online learning has been impacted by advancements in technology that permits learning to occur without the boundaries of time or geographic location (Chandras, DeLambo, & Eddy, 2005, p. 253). The number of online counseling programs has increased significantly. In fact, the number of students taking online classes has quadrupled to 7.5 million by the year 2006 (Chandras, Delambo & Eddy, 2005). Bruce (1999) stated that online learning gives a unique opportunity to those individuals wanting to study but cannot attend a residential college because of personal circumstances or work related obligations. He stated that five aspects of education that are being changed by the advancement of technology and online learning: (1) students, (2) teachers, (3) schools, (4) commercialization, and (5) the curriculum. There are key parameters to online instruction. For example, online program success is dependent on both the students’ motivational level as well as their abstract reasoning skills (Carter, 2001; Sankaran & Bui, 2001). Likewise, instructors require a strong technical support system and training in order to be effective as online educators (Seaman, 2002). Online curricula and training modules should integrate learning theory within program design and implementation. Students are likely to have more positive outcomes when training is based on these theoretical approaches (Hergenhahn, & Olsen, 2001).