Hwangji S. Lu, Robert Smiles


Adult learners take online courses or programs because of the convenience, cost-saving, flexible schedule, and work-life-school balance. In the United States, student enrollment in online education has proliferated in the past few decades. The online modality of providing education has become a crucial part of higher education. Online courses are in high demand. However, due to adult learners' characteristics and work-life situations, the course design and facilitation in online education can only partially replicate directly from the traditional classroom setting. Owing to high attrition rates in online classrooms, institutions and educators must carefully design or redesign courses relevant to the competitive job market demands. The need for contemporary instructional designs focusing on student-centered education is essential. Supported by comprehensive research studies, active learning, and high-impact educational practices have helped learners develop critical competencies and skills required by employers. Moreover, adopting appropriate pedagogical practices is necessary for better student engagement, academic performance, and retention rate.


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active learning, course redesign, ePortfolio, high-impact educational practices, online education

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