Faculty Advisor

Dr. Regina Garza Mitchell


Educational Leadership, Research and Technology

Presentation Date


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Community colleges serve the most diverse student population with regard to age, race and ethnicity, and socioeconomic status. These characteristics mirror those of students who enroll in career and technical education (Bragg, 2001, 2014) and online courses (Aslanian & Clinefelter, 2013). Yet only a handful of studies have been conducted about online technical education in community colleges. Given the continued growth in online education (Allen & Seaman, 2015; Lokken & Mullins, 2015), increasing use of technology in the classroom, and the emphasis on career and technical education (CTE) as a means of increasing degree production, more information is needed about how online education is being used to provide or enhance CTE.

This qualitative study examined how online courses and course elements are integrated into career and technical education courses and how those changes were experienced across the college. Results of this study indicate that despite the continued growth of online education, colleges need to work with faculty and staff to determine where and how that growth best fits with institutional mission and goals; the hands-on aspect of CTE courses complicates the development process.