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Canadian Initiative for Distance Education Research - CIDER

Canadian Initiative for Distance Education Research - CIDER

Owner: Terry Anderson

Group members: 59




Our new site at includes an archive of our past sessions and the most up-to-date details on CIDER.

The Canadian Initiative for Distance Education Research (CIDER) is a research initiative of the International Review of Research in Open and Distributed Learning (IRRODL) and Centre for Distance Education (CDE), Canada's largest graduate and professional distance education programming provider, at Athabasca University, Canada's Open University.

CIDER sponsors a variety of professional development activities designed to increase the quantity and quality of distance education research. CIDER's professional development scope is broad, ranging from learning and teaching application, issues of finance and access, the strategic use of technology in distance education settings, and other factors that influence distance education in Canada.

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  » CIDER Sessions archive
  » About CIDER and contact information
  » International Review of Research in Open and Distributed Learning

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CIDER receives support from Athabasca University and UNESCO.


High dropout rates constitute a major concern for higher education institutions, due to their economic and academic impact. The problem is particularly relevant for institutions offering online courses, where withdrawal ratios are reported to be higher. Both the impact and these high rates motivate the implementation of interventions oriented to reduce course withdrawal and overall institutional dropout. In this paper, we address the identification of populations of learners at risk of withdrawing from higher education online courses. This identification is oriented to design interventions and is carried out using survival analysis. We demonstrate that the method’s longitudinal approach is particularly suited for this purpose and provides a clear view of risk differences among learner populations. Additionally, the method quantifies the impact of underlying factors, either alone or in combination. Our practical implementation used an open dataset provided by The Open University. It includes data from more than 30,000 students enrolled in different courses. We conclude that low-income students and those who report a disability comprise risk groups and are thus feasible intervention targets. The survival curves also reveal differences among courses and show the detrimental effect of early dropout on low-income students, worsened throughout the course for disabled students. Intervention strategies are proposed as a result of these findings. Extending the entire refund period and giving greater academic support to students who report disability are two proposed strategies for reducing course withdrawal.

Wed, 01 Feb 2023

The online doctoral population is growing steadily worldwide, yet its narratives have not been thoroughly reviewed so far. We conducted a systematic review summarizing online PhD students’ experiences. ERIC, WoS, Scopus, and PsycInfo databases were searched following PRISMA 2020 guidelines and limiting the results to peer-reviewed articles of the last 20 years, yielding 16 studies eligible. A thematic synthesis of the studies showed that online PhD students are generally satisfied with their programs, but isolation, juggling work and family roles, and financial pressures are the main obstacles. The supervisory relationship determines the quality of the experience, whereas a strong sense of community helps students get ahead. Personal factors such as motivation, personality, and skills modulate fit with the PhD. We conclude that pursuing a doctorate online is more isolating than face to face, and students might encounter additional challenges regarding the supervision process and study/life balance. Accordingly, this review might help faculty, program managers, and prospective students better understand online doctorates’ pressing concerns such as poor well-being and high dropout rates.

Wed, 01 Feb 2023

Table of Contents Farhad Saba, Ph. D. (c) All rights reserved ERTI’s Exceptional Team ERTI unit managers, radio and television producers, graphic artists and set designers, educational technologists, educational evaluators, researchers and the many broadcast engineers and technicians who made ERTI possible were creative, energetic, enthusiastic and forward-looking young women and men. They embodied the […]

The post Educational Broadcasting in Iran in the 1960s and 1970s (2) first appeared on
February 8, 2022 - 1:54pm

Educational Broadcasting in Iran in the 1960s and 1970s (1) INTRODUCTION BACKGROUND RESLUTS AND CONSEQUENCES REFERENCES KEYWORDS Educational Broadcasting in Iran in the 1960s and 1970s (2) ERTI’S EXCEPTIONAL TEAM HIGH-LEVEL SUPPORT OF NIRT LEADERSHIP FOR ERTI

The post Table of Contents: Educational Broadcasting Iran in the 1960s and 1970s first appeared on
February 8, 2022 - 1:46pm

Table of Contents FARHAD SABA, Ph. D. (C) All rights reserved INTRODUCTION THE 1960s and the 1970s were exciting, effervescent, and consequential times for Iran. After decades of disenchantment because of overt foreign intervention and domestic turmoil there was relative calm in political conditions. This period of tranquility promised a new beginning for the country. […]

The post Educational Broadcasting in Iran in the 1960s and 1970s first appeared on
February 2, 2022 - 4:38pm

Post-Pandemic Future: Implications for Privacy The time has come for privacy to expand beyond compliance to include determinations about what should be protected and consideration of ethical implications, balancing institutional priorities with the rights of individuals. The intersection of issues including COVID-19, student success, and the emergence of the chief privacy officer (CPO) role highlights […]

The post Download Reports: Post-Pandemic Future: Implications for Privacy first appeared on
February 21, 2021 - 1:24pm

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