Face-to-face vs. Online Asynchronous Teaching in a Conservation Biology Course

Carrie Wells, Michelle Pass, Jane Walsh


In order to be effective, e-learning environments should include a diverse range of pedagogical practices and should focus on active learning student-centered pedagogical. Therefore, it should not be the delivery medium, but rather the instructional methods that facilitate proper learning. Courses that incorporate effective instructional methods will support better learning than courses that do not use effective methods, regardless of the mode of delivery. We compared a traditionally taught face to face Conservation Biology course, Biol 4244/5244, for Biology majors to a fully online asynchronous e-learning course designed using essentially the same materials but varying course delivery. The Biol 4244/4244 course is designated by the University of North Carolina at Charlotte as a “writing-intensive course”, where communication is a significant part of the course learning experience. We found no significant differences in learning outcomes, regardless of the method of course delivery. Overall, we feel that this study indicates that online instruction in this type of course is a viable alternative to face-to-face instruction.


face-to-face learning, online learning, asynchronous, STEM

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DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.24059/olj.v26i2.2775

Copyright (c) 2022 Carrie Wells, Michelle Pass, Jane Walsh

License URL: https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/