Civilian Education System - Phase 1 Distributed Learning (DL) Update
The Army Management Staff College (AMSC) launched the revised Phase 1 prerequisite Intermediate and Advanced DL courses early in FY17 as part of a significant program revision. The FY17 online prerequisite courses were significantly more challenging than their predecessors. Feedback indicated courses were long, difficult, and failed to accurately measure student learning. Application level assessments were identified as frustrating and an obstacle to course completion.
AMSC responded to student and Army Civilian Corps leader feedback and made four significant modifications. Modifications were targeted at reducing student frustration and eliminating course completion obstacles. Modifications enacted are:
- Post Lesson Assessments. Application level, scenario-based lesson assessments were removed. They were replaced by straight-forward, knowledge-based, multiple choice questions focused solely on measuring student learning. This enhancement drastically reduced time and frustration students faced trying to complete assessments.
- Lesson Pre-tests. Pre-test were developed for each lesson. Pre-test are knowledge-based multiple-choice questions assessing lesson objective knowledge. Students scoring 90% or higher are credited for lesson completion and do not have to work through the lesson. Approximately 20% of pre-tests taken have been passed to date.
- Lesson Guides. Each lesson now has a companion lesson guide. Lesson guides mirror lesson content narratives, serve as reference material, and are provided to students immediately following the pre-test. Each lesson guide is a downloadable PDF that can be saved for future reference. Students can use lesson guides as they work through the computer based lessons and as a reference when taking lesson post-tests.
- Lesson Completion Options. Students now have three options to complete lesson materials if they don’t pass the pre-test. The options include: 1) completing the Interactive Multimedia Instruction (IMI) modules; 2) reviewing lesson guides; or 3) a combination of IMIs and lesson guides (recommended option). Upon completion of either an IMI or lesson guide, students will have access to the post-test. (Available with course enrollments after 1 Apr 19.)
Preliminary feedback indicates these enhancements improve student learning and success rates, while simultaneously reducing the time it takes to complete the course. AMSC will continue to assess overall time commitments to distance learning in order to optimize student outcomes. AMSC appreciates the feedback and continued dialogue on course enhancements.