Assessing Students Perceptions on Intensive Face to Face in Open and Distance Education: A Case of the Open University of Tanzania
Intensive face to face has been going on as a strategy to blend learning in diploma in primary teachers‟ education at OUT. However, at The Open University of Tanzania there has been no study that has investigated whether students find it useful or not. Therefore, this study assessed students‟ perception on Intensive Face to Face sessions. The study specifically aimed at identifying students‟ perception on quality of interaction between tutors and students and between students on the other hand. It also explored the nature of challenges students meet in attending face to face sessions. Sixty students and ten tutors from the Institute of Continuing Education were consulted for questionnaire and interview administration. Overall, findings show that, students perceived intensive face to face as a resourceful occasion for their studies in terms of receiving clarification from tutors, promoting students‟ collaboration and acquiring study skills from peers. Students getting psychosocial support from peers were also another reason for students to positively perceive the intensive face to face sessions. Students also expressed concerns about tutors‟ strategies in identifying and addressing students‟ academic and psychosocial problems. The study recommends measures to make face to face comprehensive in nature that is, more in-depth research work in regard to the quality of teaching and learning sessions between tutors and students on one hand and between students on the other hand. Further studies on psychosocial support services that can be incorporated in the conduct of face to face for better support of ODL students can be done.
Keywords: Perception, intensive face to face, distance education