Title

The transactional relationship between occupational identity and place in online higher education

Presenter Information

Sarah GrinderFollow

1

Location

Studio 3

Start Time

20-10-2017 4:45 PM

End Time

20-10-2017 5:45 PM

Session Type

Theoretical Paper

Abstract

Title: The transactional relationship between occupational identity and place in online higher education

Key Words: Online education, Placemaking, Occupational identity

Intent:

This theoretical paper will present the current understandings of identity, place and placemaking, and online higher education from interdisciplinary perspectives. This discussion will use occupational science theories of occupational identity, place, and the Transactional Model to understand the interplay of these concepts within the virtual classroom. The discussion will suggest ways in which student identity in online higher education transacts with the virtual educational place, and theoretical approaches to consider to support the formation of that identity.

Argument:

Blended and online higher education has grown significantly from single courses to entire programs and colleges, even within occupational science and occupational therapy programs. In 2014, 28.5% of students in higher education took some or all of their courses through distance education. Some evidence suggests that outcomes of online education do not differ significantly from traditional, face-to-face formats, even though attrition rates in online classes are much higher. However, no literature has examined the relationship between the virtual place of the online classroom and the occupational identity formation of the online student. Such a consideration from an occupational science perspective may support the design of online courses and programs, reduce attrition rates, and increase student satisfaction.

Importance to occupational science:

Discussions of the nature of occupational identity are ongoing in occupational science, and there is an emerging consideration of place in relation to technology. This paper continues that discussion by exploring the transactional relationship between the two. Application to online course design, including concepts of placelessness and placemaking in an online context, and future directions for research will be suggested. Such examination not only brings this discussion into the occupational science realm, but begins to bring the occupational science perspective into the forefront of higher education, online education, technology design, and student affairs.

Conclusion:

As the situation of the current college student has changed, from the traditional age student in the traditional, face-to-face classroom to the non-traditional student in a virtual classroom, so has the educational market changed to meet that demand. However, no literature has examined the change in occupational identity that may have resulted from this shift in educational place. An understanding of the relationship between occupational identity and online places will support colleges and universities in designing online higher educational experiences that support overall student well-being.

Questions:

1. What are the unique features of an online place that help inform occupational science research in a digital age?

2. What are the influences of place, placelessness, and placemaking in distance education?

3. How can occupational identity formation be understood in the virtual classroom?

4. What is the transaction between the virtual classroom and occupational identity as a college student in higher education?

5. How do the occupational science understandings of place and identity inform online education design?

References

Easthope, H. (2009). Fixed identities in a mobile work? The relationship between mobility, place, and identity. Identities, 16(1), 61-82. DOI: 10.1080/10702890802605810

Ehret, C., & Hollett, T. (2016). Affective dimensions of participatory design research in informal learning environments: Placemaking, belonging, and correspondence. Cognition and Instruction, 34(3), 250-258. DOI: 10.1080/07370008.2016.1169815

Kuo, A. (2011). A transactional view: Occupation as a means to create experiences that matter. Journal of Occupational Science, 18(2), 131-138. DOI: 10.1080/14427591.2011.575759

Phelan, S., & Kinsella, E. A. (2009). Occupational identity: Engaging socio‐cultural perspectives. Journal of Occupational Science, 16(2), 85-91. DOI: 10.1080/14427591.2009.9686647

Richardson, J. C. Maeda, Y., Lv, J., & Caskurlu, S. (2017). Social presence in relation to students' satisfaction and learning in the online environment: A meta-analysis. Computers in Human Behavior, 71, 402-417. doi:10.1016/j.chb.2017.02.001

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Oct 20th, 4:45 PM Oct 20th, 5:45 PM

The transactional relationship between occupational identity and place in online higher education

Studio 3

Title: The transactional relationship between occupational identity and place in online higher education

Key Words: Online education, Placemaking, Occupational identity

Intent:

This theoretical paper will present the current understandings of identity, place and placemaking, and online higher education from interdisciplinary perspectives. This discussion will use occupational science theories of occupational identity, place, and the Transactional Model to understand the interplay of these concepts within the virtual classroom. The discussion will suggest ways in which student identity in online higher education transacts with the virtual educational place, and theoretical approaches to consider to support the formation of that identity.

Argument:

Blended and online higher education has grown significantly from single courses to entire programs and colleges, even within occupational science and occupational therapy programs. In 2014, 28.5% of students in higher education took some or all of their courses through distance education. Some evidence suggests that outcomes of online education do not differ significantly from traditional, face-to-face formats, even though attrition rates in online classes are much higher. However, no literature has examined the relationship between the virtual place of the online classroom and the occupational identity formation of the online student. Such a consideration from an occupational science perspective may support the design of online courses and programs, reduce attrition rates, and increase student satisfaction.

Importance to occupational science:

Discussions of the nature of occupational identity are ongoing in occupational science, and there is an emerging consideration of place in relation to technology. This paper continues that discussion by exploring the transactional relationship between the two. Application to online course design, including concepts of placelessness and placemaking in an online context, and future directions for research will be suggested. Such examination not only brings this discussion into the occupational science realm, but begins to bring the occupational science perspective into the forefront of higher education, online education, technology design, and student affairs.

Conclusion:

As the situation of the current college student has changed, from the traditional age student in the traditional, face-to-face classroom to the non-traditional student in a virtual classroom, so has the educational market changed to meet that demand. However, no literature has examined the change in occupational identity that may have resulted from this shift in educational place. An understanding of the relationship between occupational identity and online places will support colleges and universities in designing online higher educational experiences that support overall student well-being.

Questions:

1. What are the unique features of an online place that help inform occupational science research in a digital age?

2. What are the influences of place, placelessness, and placemaking in distance education?

3. How can occupational identity formation be understood in the virtual classroom?

4. What is the transaction between the virtual classroom and occupational identity as a college student in higher education?

5. How do the occupational science understandings of place and identity inform online education design?