Jiang, Munoz & Attambide

Effective Practices in Facilitating Non-Traditional Adult Learners' Dissertation Writing in an Online Doctoral Program

Mei Jiang, Texas A&M University
Ava Munoz, Texas A&M University
Melissa Arrambide, Texas A&M University


To address the challenges nontraditional adult doctoral learners face in completing dissertations online, we reflect on the effective practices utilized in an online doctoral-level educational leadership program at a public university in the United States. This paper focused on two major topics: 1) how to prepare students to write a dissertation through coursework based on the Competency-based Education (CBE) theory; and 2) how to build relationships between mentors and students writing dissertations based on the Community of Inquiry (CoI) framework. The theoretically founded practices based on CBE and CoI must be utilized in building an interactive, collaborative online learning community.

Keywords: competency-based education, dissertation writing, online learning

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