Objective

The goal of this study was to investigate whether blended online with laboratory instruction differs from traditional classroom lecture and laboratory with regard to student satisfaction and performance in a radiographic technique class teaching radiation health and physics.

Methods

Following institutional review board approval, 122 participants were randomly assigned to either an online or classroom environment for the lecture portion of the course. All participants attended weekly laboratory sessions in person. Anonymous surveys given during midterm and final exams assessed satisfaction with learning experience and expected grades. Linear models assessing differences between groups were adjusted for age, gender, prior online class experience, online class preference, self-reported computer skill, and time of year.

Results

Students in the blended cohort reported overall greater satisfaction (p < .03) and found the delivery method more enjoyable (p < .002) than did the traditional classroom cohort. No differences in exam scores between groups were observed.

Conclusion

This study demonstrated that a blended format of instruction can improve learner satisfaction as compared with the traditional classroom method. Blended instruction implemented into a traditional educational program helps students balance schedules, has a positive impact on perceived learning, and provides exam success similar to that of the traditional classroom.

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Author notes

Steven Taliaferro is an assistant professor in the Basic Sciences Department at the University of Western States College of Chiropractic (2900 NE 132nd Avenue, Portland, OR 97230; staliaferro@uws.edu). Beverly Harger is the program director, Diagnostic Imaging, University of Western States (2900 NE 132nd Avenue, Portland, OR 97230; bharger@uws.edu).

Concept development: ST, BH. Design: ST, BH. Supervision: ST, BH. Data collection/processing: ST, BH. Analysis/interpretation: ST, BH. Literature search: ST. Writing: ST. Critical review: ST, BH.