Patti Hinkley Laurel Shaler Brandi Chamberlin Clay Peters Jama Davis Anita Kuhnley


The world of online learning has exploded over the past 15 years, causing professors to quickly determine the best methods for teaching in an online format. At this point there is much knowledge and experience to be explored to help inform both faculty and academic institutions. The purpose of this empirical research study was to seek additional knowledge from successful faculty members on the teaching strategies that contribute to student success in an online CACREP counselor education program. A discussion of previous research is provided with a focus on the best practices for teaching students in an online format. Secondly, the results from a faculty survey and faculty focus group are provided along with descriptions of helpful strategies for teaching online students. The findings indicate that empathic faculty engagement with students was a strong predictor of success. Another key factor was prompt constructive feedback along with intentionality in looking for ways to help students succeed. Overall, finding ways to connect with students personally increased retention rates as well as provided overall faculty and student satisfaction. A discussion follows with implications as well as suggestions for future research.

Keywords:  student success, faculty success, online education, counselor education, student engagement