Best Practices in Teaching K-12 Online: Lessons Learned from Michigan Virtual School Teachers

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Journal of Interactive Online Learning, Vol: 9, Issue: 3, Page: 10-35

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DiPietro, Meredith; Ferdig, Richard E; Black, Erik W.; Presto, Megan
Digital Commons @ Kent State University Libraries
online courses; virtual classrooms; Web-based instruction; distance education; teaching methods; instructional effectiveness; teacher attitudes; interviews; best practices; experienced teachers; teacher characteristics; teacher effectiveness; secondary school teachers; Education
article description
Virtual schools are rising in popularity and presence. Unfortunately, there is a relative dearth of research related to teaching and learning in virtual schools. Although there are numerous handbooks addressing teaching online, there is little research on successful online teaching in the K-12 arena. Much of the existing research focused on teaching online is rooted in face-to-face content, not focused on content areas, built upon a post-secondary audience, or fails to use data from the teachers themselves to triangulate findings. This article reports on a study of 16 virtual school teachers from the Michigan Virtual School (MVS). It reports on best-practices from the interviews conducted with MVS teachers; and also provides research triangulation for those practices. The paper concludes with implications for policy, research, and practice. (Contains 1 table and 1 figure.)