Electronic Theses and Dissertations


Open Access Dissertation


Blended learning is being used more and more in higher education. However, for humanities and other loosely content structured areas, blended learning can be challenging. It has generally been reserved for subject areas such as computer programing, mathematics, business, science, and statistics--courses where competence is commonly assessed by administering work on which performance is either right or wrong. Furthermore, agreement has not yet been reached on how to best incorporate the face-to-face and online teaching resources. This study examines one approach of implementing web-based instruction to improve undergraduate Introduction to Literature courses at a midsized Midwestern university.

This study was designed to accomplish three goals. The first was to discover whether an undergraduate Introduction to Literature course based upon the recommendations of Rosenblatt (1994) and Perkins and Unger (1999) can meet the needs of students in a BL environment. The second goal of this study was to measure the students’ perceptions of the blended Introduction to Literature environment with respect to its productiveness in terms of their attitudes and achievements. The third and final goal was to discover how students experience the teacher’s practice and behavior and the extent to which these factors affect student perceptions of the course and BL environment in general. These goals were examined through the CABLS lens designed by Wang, Han, and Yang (2015).

The mixed methods study gathered the data through multiple data points. These included student surveys, student interviews, students’ pre-and post-tests, student assignments, the university’s student evaluation of teaching, classroom observations, videos, and the researcher’s action research of the experience. Overall, the approach used for the blended Introduction to Literature course met with positive outcomes in terms of both student perceptions and achievement

Conclusions and implications of using the blended learning format for an effective introductory literature course including realizing blended learning is a complex adaptive system, may help learners gain new positive learner identities, may supply a more accurate assessment of student learning, may not be for everyone, requires teachers to take on multiple identities, is challenging, requires plenty of supports, and may not be cost saving.

Date of Award


Degree Name

Doctor of Education


Department of Educational Psychology and Foundations

First Advisor

Robert Boody

Date Original


Object Description

1 PDF file (xvii + 647 pages)



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