Students in the EdD in Kinesiology, UNCG’s first completely online doctoral program, just finished their first semester. This group of 18 students “attends” classes online from 7 different states, including North Carolina, California, Texas, Virginia, Georgia, Missouri, Pennsylvania, and South Carolina. Students took two courses during the fall of 2014 semester, a seminar in kinesiology (KIN 750) which allowed students to explore the field of kinesiology, and a program design course (KIN 662) which focused on leadership and professional development in higher education. End of course feedback was very positive with students noting they had a better understanding of the field and they had already applied what they learned in class into their own professional practice. All of the students in the program work full-time positions in a variety of professions, so finding time to fit in a degree is a regular challenge. To offset this challenge, we felt it was critical to make the course work relevant to the professional issues they face on a daily basis; ensuring that coursework has some direct, immediate application is critical. Our goal is for students to find immediate benefits from their coursework, and that is what our students reported.
Craig, shared how he had incorporated some of the technology into the courses he teaches at another institution. “I was so impressed with the whole Google facility to share group work (learned through UNCG) that I decided to incorporate it into my undergraduate [course]… It went down very well with students who not only have a lot of group assignments,…Thanks for a great teaching resource!!!”
Steve felt this course (KIN 662) was “one of the most practical I have taken over the course of my academic career. I have often said that the public speaking course I took during my undergrad years has served me the best during the course of my career but KIN 662 may have taken that title…I also enjoyed the format of the course. I have never taken an online course before this so I did not know what to expect. The idea of inserting one’s self into the case studies made the course interactive and created a sense of ownership in the assignments during the course. Having to interact with the various members of the cohort was also a huge positive. The message boards allowed for interesting dialogue and discussion, as well as a venue to observe different points of view, and perhaps the best part, getting a glimpse of the personalities of the members of the cohort.”
David, another student, wrote “In general I think that this class has been a great help to my growth as a potential administrative personnel, and I have looked forward to every topic and assignment. This should come as a great compliment to both the course design and instructor because I am usually doing my reading and writing between the hours of 8pm and 12am since I cannot do it at work (which means I am usually at the end of my wits 🙂 ). I look forward to what next semester brings…”
Students have a little less than a month to relax before they start their next two classes, one on applying research to professional practice (KIN 601) and another course on physical activity and health (KIN 665).
Additional information about the EdD in KIN program is available at http://kin.wp.uncg.edu/edd/.
Applications for the fall 2015 cohort are currently being accepted, and the initial admissions review will begin in January.