Using U.S. Online Graduate Distance Education Successes to Make Recommendations for the Taiwan Higher Education System

Date of Degree


Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)




Annette E. Craven


Julia W. Briggs


Jessica C. Kimmel


Nancy I. Robbins


Technology changes people’s daily lives and tremendously influences many domains, including education. The effect of technology on distance education is remarkable. Online education enhances the interaction not only between instructors and learners but also among learners, a feat that was difficult to accomplish with past delivery methods. More and more universities and for-profit higher education companies provide online education to fit working adults’ need to pursue higher education without giving up their jobs and other responsibilities. Since Taiwan has joined the World Trade Organization, other countries’ educational institutions have been allowed to compete with Taiwan's educational institutions, making online education an important issue. This study explored how to implement an online graduate degree program for Taiwan based on the success of online educational experiences in the United States. Students, faculty, and administrators at four universities participated in this qualitative case study. Data triangulation, member checks, and peer evaluation were used to ensure the credibility of this research. The findings indicated that student perceptions of the success of online graduate degree programs included: (a) expectation about online education, (b) learner characteristics, (c) required skills, (d) institutional support, and (e) learning strategies. Faculty perceptions of program success included: (a) faculty characteristics, (b) required skills, (c) institutional support, and (d) teaching strategies. Administrator perceptions of program success were: (a) reason to provide online education, (b) support of top management, (c) student support, (d) institutional support, and (e) cooperation with third parties. Based on these findings, recommendations were made for each participant group and for Taiwan online education; further research was also suggested.

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