Exposing the True Cost of Distance Education (and what should be done) (RCAF Journal - SUMMER 2015 - Volume 4, Issue 3)

10th Anniversary Edition

 

Table of contents

 

By Major Bernie Thorne, CD, MSc

Reprint from The Canadian Air Force Journal Vol. 4, No. 3, Summer 2011

The following article is informed by the author’s Master’s thesis. This thesis sought to identify the reason why some military personnel succeed in part-time learning, while others do not. The thesis discovered that, paradoxically, the most motivated and driven people were those who tended not to complete. When a full workload, family life, personal time, and the school work compete for the attention and effort of highly driven individuals, those who do not lower their workload may burn out if the programme is longer than their endurance. Walking the path to burnout incurs significant costs to the member and also to the organization. So, this article could have been written to educate students of the dangers of burnout, and what skills/supports may be employed to help prevent it; however, discussion with the editor clarified the need to inform policy makers of the deleterious impacts of and ways to enhance part-time distance learning programmes.

Introduction

The demand for ever-increasing levels of education within the Canadian Forces (CF) continues to mount. From our very beginnings as a professional military, there was wide acceptance of the need for a liberally educated officer corps. With the increasing pace of technology, the CF must also depend on advanced education to access specialized skills. Ever-increasing complexity of bureaucratic control mechanisms demand solid understanding of the underpinning theories, as well as the application of those controls to work within and shape the mechanisms as required. The target audience has expanded beyond the officer corps to include the entire CF, grown in span to include the CF at large, and broadened to include a range of programmes often not available from within military training systems.

The CF has facilitated and encouraged members to undertake educational programmes. There has been a myriad of ongoing sponsorship programmes aimed at delivering advanced education: Advanced Degree Completion Plan, Educational Reserve, et cetera. There have also been initiatives to increase the formality of high-level military training to achieve, where possible, equivalency with civilian universities. Programmes that have been proven popular include the Officer Professional Military Education (OPME), which provides university credits, and the Staff College, which when coupled with supplemental work, offers a master’s degree.

There is also an increasing value placed on advanced education qualifications with certain positions, trades, and rank levels, requiring educational accreditation. Weighting of education on merit boards for promotion, postings, and access to highly sought courses is spreading at a sedate but steady pace. The civilian workforce also values academic qualifications, and the potential for access to a better second career is often another motivation, as is the desire to prove/improve oneself.

As the CF is unable to deliver the desired levels of education to all members during working hours, several programmes have been created to partially sponsor members willing to undertake education on their own time. The author completed his master’s degree under the Advanced Degree Completion Programme, and a newer programme called the Educational Reserve is now in place. These programmes offer monetary sponsorship while participants continue to work and complete education on their own time. In an environment where postings and deployments often occur with little warning, many members lean towards distance learning to ensure opportunity for completion.

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Risks

The desire for education is shared by both the CF as an organization and the individual members who wish to have access to it. Access to the fully sponsored (time and costs) programmes is normally strongly contested, with a large number of members vying for the opportunity. Work is laid aside for a year or two to allow concentration on education, and it is usually expected that the educational knowledge and skills obtained will be put into use on return to work. The current operational tempo, along with ongoing personnel shortages, have made it difficult to provide members the time away from their occupation necessary to “go back to school.” Financial sponsorship, alone, is much easier to obtain, but advanced education obtained via distance learning—while remaining engaged in a professional work and family life—is such a costly endeavour that the risks and costs must be considered before committing.

The risk of not completing is much higher for distance learning as compared to physical classroom attendance. The author’s review of the literature revealed that the most optimistic results showed an attrition rate only 10–20 per cent worse than traditional classroom education.[1] Most studies have a more pessimistic outlook. Sparks and Simonson showed attrition rates of 40 to 50 per cent higher.[2] Menager-Beeley identified 20 per cent attrition for regular versus 50 per cent for distance.[3] The most damning study tracked a pass rate of only 44.2 per cent for distance learning.[4] Taken together, these results show a non-completion rate of between 20 to 50 per cent for distance learning, which is significantly worse than that for traditional classroom study.

Unfortunately, none of the above studies considered a critical factor in this discussion; which is: what is the difference between professionals who remain working and study only in their free time versus people who do not work at all or who work limited hours while attending school? One study did consider this factor and found that 68 per cent of career workers who studied nights/weekends were at substantial risk of not completing education as compared to only 18 per cent for students who worked only to support school.[5] Those with careers were 3.8 times more likely not to succeed than students without careers. If we merge these study results, we see a grim picture. A generic distance learning programme will see a total dropout rate of between 20 and 50 per cent, and the working professional is 3 to 4 times more likely to be one of the students who does not succeed. Canadian Forces members who continue to work and enter distance learning are at a significant risk of not completing their course of study.

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The costs incurred by any member who participates in distance learning while remaining at work are significant. Sponsorship funding may have to be returned (up to $25,000) if unsuccessful. Compulsory service is incurred in some programmes regardless of success or failure. Canadian Forces students who were interviewed by the author were almost uniform in how they obtained time for study. First, they lost personal time (for hobbies, relaxing, fitness, and sleep) and then, their family time was taken. In several cases, this “stealing of time” was so serious and damaging that the term “cannibalizing” was used. As these programmes normally last from two to five years, there are often postings, promotions, deployments, and new family members to deal with at the same time. The resulting stress maintained for years can cause long-term effects on motivation and even health.

Most of the time that I did my school work was after they had gone to bed... working from eleven to two o’clock or eleven to three in the morning and then getting up at six or seven to go to work the next day... It weighs on me every day that I haven’t finished that. It literally pains me every day.[6]

Although time was rarely taken from the job, it is not unreasonable to assume that the amount of physiological and psychological stress may have resulted in reduced performance at work (although this measurement was outside the scope of the author’s study). As the members become aware of the costs that they and their families are paying, resentment towards the CF is a reasonable expectation. This level of stress maintained for years can result in burnout that has no short-term remedy, even when acknowledged, and can cause multiple detrimental effects on performance.

The Study

Background

The author’s study strove to identify what enables some working adults to complete significant distance educational endeavours while others are thwarted. It was identified that working adults who decide to undertake education are at great risk of not completing, so the import of this study is apparent for the individuals themselves. However, the CF and the educational institutions should have an acute interest in the question as well. In addition to the moral concern of the organization to the individual, the CF has a vested interest in its members successfully seeking higher skills and qualifications. Many of the motivational elements (a sense of competence, as example) are also very likely to carry over to all of the activities and goals undertaken by the individual, potentially improving (or damaging) job performance. Educational institutions seek to improve their reputations and thereby gain and educate more students. Back to the question: What enables some working professional adults to complete significant distance educational endeavours where others are thwarted?

There are two major schools of motivation theory. Needs (or content) theories emphasize the wants and needs that motivate people, and Maslow’s hierarchy of needs is a well-known example. The other major branch is the cognitive (or process) school that tries to explain how we think, decide, act, respond, change, et cetera. In order to have a complete picture of motivation, both schools must be considered. Each of the hundreds of motivational theories holds truth, but we need to find the one that is the best “fit” if we are to explain what is happening to these students and how we can improve results.

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Methodology

To answer the study question, we had to find which of the theories of motivation best explained the path to success or failure to allow us to identify when, where, and how to intervene to provide the best chance of success. Given the hundreds of theories and sub-theories within each of these schools, it could seem like an impossible task to narrow down these theories or to pick one out from all the others for testing.

Fortunately, most of the theories are similar. They have largely the same elements that are explained, or interact, in slightly different ways, or with stress on one area over another. A study that assesses all potential elements and discusses how these elements interact for each subject through in-depth interviews should allow the paring down to a few theories that best explain how success is achieved in this unique group.

When studying motivation, it is best to conduct purposeful sampling; that is, to randomly pick from within a desired study group. The reason for this is that those whose motivation has been most adversely affected are much less likely to volunteer. Approval from the Social Sciences Review Board was required to conduct a study within the CF population, and privacy concerns prevented direct access to the files and individuals. The staff at the Canadian Defence Academy kindly assisted this study by sending volunteer requests to approximately 200 students. Of almost 40 personnel who volunteered, 13 were acceptable subjects. This loss of purposeful sampling could not be avoided, and it is important to note that the worst cases were unlikely to have been heard.

Results

The prediction that significant motivational elements were damaged and resulted in dropping out turned out not to be true. The needs remained outstanding (payback, qualification, recognition, etc.) by those who were unsuccessful, and the parts of their thought processes, or cognition, most important to motivation (sense of competence, control, etc.) remained strong.

The subject group felt highly efficacious and competent, and even the lack of success following educational endeavours of several years did not make this waiver. Control of the learning process certainly showed to have positive motivational benefit, but lack of control of learning was not voiced as a significant detractor of motivation in the group. Lack of ability to maintain balance between goals was cited as a larger source of lost feelings of control. The commitment to the goal of education resulting from the needs of the individuals was evoked considering both costs and benefits. The rapid and unexpected life changes thrown at these individuals contributed to the difficulty in keeping the desired balance between work, education, and family. These life changes were not, however, cited as the major source of lost balance.

More interesting is that some individuals were very strongly committed to the goal of education and seemed to have a need to perform far beyond the level required to receive the benefit. They incurred cost for no reason other than for the desire to prove themselves. Whatever the cause, a portion of the subject group was at risk of exerting such effort and accepting such stress for extended periods that the author was forced to consider “burnout” as the cause of lost persistence.

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Assessing all the elements of motivation did allow a tentative identification of what caused the most at risk of burnout. Achievement goal Orientation (AO) refers to the individual’s natural tendency towards what goals are selected and pursued and is a very stable trait. There are three types of AO: learning, performance-avoid, and performance-prove. Both learning and performance AOs may be held at the same time to varying degrees of strength. A learning AO drives individuals to seek opportunities to develop and grow; as could be expected, all the subjects who volunteered for education had a very strong learning AO. The performance AOs (prove/avoid) relate to the individual’s motivation in terms of others. A performance-avoid AO causes the individual to avoid situations where they may compare badly or where there is risk; the subjects understandably showed absolutely neutral on the performance-avoid AO. The performance-prove AO was the one characteristic that varied.

I knew that if I applied for post-graduate studies full-time, that it was going to take me out of that stream for promotion for a bit of time. And it would probably have cost me to have my promotion to major delayed… you want to come out as high as you can so it’s not wasted effort. There were “eyes on.” I ended up 1st of 9,000 in the entire master’s field at AMU.[7]

A stronger performance-prove AO causes individuals to seek challenging opportunities to compare with others, to show their competence and demonstrate growth. A combination of strong learning and strong performance-prove AO is theoretically the best mix to drive performance and growth. These individuals are the ones whose traits also cause them to set for themselves challenging and risky tasks at work. In this study, however, it was revealed that this combination caused the individuals to set more challenging goals in work and in study and to refuse to back down, even when they were cannibalizing their own lives over several years.

Burnout

That people are strongly motivated and exert massive effort to achieve deeply held needs is what leads to burnout. We want to be challenged, to have a valuable outlet for our abilities and energy. If we only did what we were told and then went home, there would be no burnout. Burnout can become a vicious cycle once started. The cynical detachment from goals and activity, and the chronic exhaustion make it very difficult to recover because the resources required to escape are disappearing without any change in the conditions that caused the burnout.[8]

As I look back on it, I just can’t believe that I got through it. I got down physically, I have to say. I got sick at one point.[9]

Burisch detailed a model of burnout with a basic unit of analysis being an action episode or AE. The AE could be considered a specific action with a purpose, a beginning, and an end. The AE is unspecified in duration, and in practice, it ranges from minutes to decades. AEs can be hierarchically nested, and most people find themselves in several AEs at any given time. An AE begins when motives are activated by perception of a given situation and results in a commitment to an incentive or goal. The actor engages in planning, forms expectations of need, time, resources, likely benefits, and the risks of negative side effects. If the action succeeds and the incentive or goal is attained without investing more resources than planned, then the AE is considered an undisturbed AE. This is unlikely for any but the simplest incentives.[10]

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When things do not run as smoothly as planned, the AE is disturbed. The goal can be blocked (motive thwarting), unplanned obstacles can call for unexpectedly high investments (goal impediment), the goal can be attained with the results not living up to expectations (insufficient reward), or unexpected negative results can offset some or all of the gains (unexpected negative side effects). These disturbances result in stress that Burisch refers to as first and second order. When an AE is disturbed, first-order stress appears initially, and the actor attempts to remedy the situation. Second-order stress and then burnout can occur when repeated attempts to fix the disturbed AE do not result in success, and there are no remaining outs or buffers. This second-order stress usually results in feelings of loss of control. In some cases, where the actor’s world picture was not in accord with reality, this may lead to enhanced competence once internalized. Coping can fail, however, and this can trigger burnout. Unsuccessful coping can trigger large changes in motive, with such possible results as: planning becoming excessively perfectionist, planning becoming inadequate because of panic, planning being replaced by reaction, and aspiration levels decreasing. Feelings of self-efficacy can be lost. Some people may be burnout prone, and it is possible that burnout-prone people systematically overestimate their ability or happiness generation of successful AEs while underestimating or overlooking the costs.[11]

Grasha and Savickas both distinguish between defensive (frustration or maladaptive) and coping mechanisms (constructive or adaptive) to stress.[12] They consider that defensive mechanisms always involve some amount of distortion or self-deception and are unhealthy in the long term; examples being regression, fixation, or withdrawal. Coping mechanisms include gaining information, seeking help, problem solving, recognizing own feelings, and setting new goals. These mechanisms and strategies are trainable and therefore offer possibility of successful intervention.[13]

When in a situation leading to the potential for burnout, it is critical for individuals to employ effective coping tools early on. Unfortunately, many distance learning programmes do not provide the relationships and support networks necessary to seek help. In addition, the individuals are usually far ahead (in the given academic area) of those around them. The only effective coping mechanism remaining available to an individual standing alone is to recognize the true situation and set reduced goals (vice self-deception and fixation). A strong performance-prove AO makes the subjects less willing to ask for time off or to request a reduction in workload because they are driven to prove themselves capable of the challenge. It is deeply unfortunate that those individuals who are most likely to take on many and challenging goals are those least willing to use effective coping methods. Instead, fixation becomes the norm, and achieving the goals becomes a question of endurance.

“My wife really tried to be supportive, but I basically abandoned my family for that two years. It was terrible and I’d never do it again.”[14]

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Those who walk this path and suffer the pathology towards burnout suffer greatly. The damage to self-respect, quality of life, and willingness/ability to give extra efforts to the CF are significant within those who are the most driven. Several of the subjects had begun or were seriously considering release. Most of the subjects had stated how they were going to shift balance back to their families and themselves; they were much less likely to accept significant new demands from work. This problem is as serious to the CF as it is to the individual. Fortunately, something can be done to reduce burnout; effective coping is a skill that has been proven to be trainable, and education policy can be adjusted to help provide the most critical supports.

As an aside, the author was deployed for six months to Kandahar and paused study for that period. The reduction in stress and pressure made it feel relatively like a vacation despite the challenges of the deployment—a good chance to “recharge the batteries.” The CF cares about quality of life and protects personnel from repeated deployments without adequate “home time” in between. Advanced education, done part-time, can last two to seven years without pause, and is as bad as or worse than deployment in many ways to the individual and family. Yet there is no oversight or protection for the individual involved in education.

Recommendations

It is critical that policymakers understand the threat to individuals and to the CF when encouraging significant education while the members remain working. Although difficult to gauge the costs, as the individual changes gradually over several years, the changes are significant. Following the recommendations below should reduce the incidence and severity of burnout, but not prevent it in all cases. As there is risk involved, the programme must be of worth to both the individual and the organization to justify the risk.

If the programme deals explicitly with the work of the individual, not only is the value clear, but also the education is greatly improved. A tenet of adult education is the importance of applying theory as soon as possible. A workplace closely aligned with an area of study also provides a rich base of experience to make the education better and lets the student discuss learning with peers, thereby potentially improving the workplace. A support network (an important part of effective coping) is much more likely as well.

Training Before Beginning

Training the potential students prior to and during education is perhaps the most critical element in preventing burnout. Each region already conducts educational conferences and relationships with a personnel selection officer (PSO), who is required to complete individualized learning plans and to apply for the various programmes. These conferences and relationships may be leveraged to deliver required training and offer an opportunity for graduates to brief their work, for students to seek/discuss thesis ideas, et cetera. If the conference is outside the PSO realm, the students would likely be quite willing to organize on a regional basis—if they were authorized.

Most subjects in the study miscalculated the effort and time required for education and the costs they and their families would incur. Some of this was certainly from unsophisticated decision-making skills, but some was also from misinformation—it is amazing how many schools say that 10 hours a week for two years can give a real master’s degree. Schools need to sell their “product.” Most full-time students who have no other distractions and access to all required resources and support at their fingertips require 40 to 60 hours a week over several years. Stories from previous students and especially testimonials from recent graduates would help clarify the likely costs and encourage better decision making.

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Most bases already offer learning skills such as speed reading, effective writing, et cetera. To have been away from the academic world for a number of years poses a significant initial hurdle to returning students. Not only are the old habits and skills rusted or lost, many of them have become outdated. Anyone who last did academic research looking though the card files and microfiche is in for a surprise! It is important, therefore, to encourage would-be students not only to access the means to brush up on or acquire these core skills, but also to encourage them to take a university course or two to “warm up” before jumping into the education stream with both feet.

Having a community of people who are going through the same thing provides not only a social support network, but also a set of people who have faced or may face similar difficulties. The different students learn to overcome specific problems, and in turn their problems become a source of learning for the others. Having a facilitating local PSO allows for the rapid identification of problems in policy, school, programme, or within a unit. Identification of problems is the first part of continuous improvement.

Perhaps the most important training is to encourage adoption of effective coping methods that will help solve the stresses likely to be faced and to recognize those that are unlikely to help. Effective coping methods include seeking help (time off from work, someone to spend time with kids, etc.) and goal revision (accepting lower standards in work, delaying a project or term, etc.). Using real-life examples will be important to make people who have yet to be exposed to these stresses understand the danger of ineffective behaviours such as fixation (increasing effort by taking time away from sleep or family, or planning to an obsessive degree), reaction taking over from self-regulation, and withdrawing from the activity without consciously making the decision to change goals. Measuring the levels of achievement orientation will let the students who are most likely to experience burnout understand why and be better prepared to respond effectively.

Policy Supports

There are sections of education policy that are currently quite unfair. Residency requirements are currently not sponsored for travel or living expenses. This limits selection of programmes for those who do not wish to personally bear the associated costs. Postings can also result in students incurring unexpected residency costs if they must return to what had been a local school. Some commanders recognize this unfairness and authorize temporary duty for work so that the student is paid to travel and live, and does not take leave or takes some leave in combination with paid travel. A fair level of support for sponsorship in residency should be set and enforced equally across all personnel.

It is also up to the commander’s discretion whether or not to give educational leave in a given year. Twenty days per year is the maximum authorized, but some commanders give even more time, such as a day a week to study through the year. Distance learning Staff College is one common example of some commanders providing significant time off, while others provide none at all. Those who are in the busiest jobs and need support the most are least likely to get time off. Even when agreements are made with commanders, postings ruin many agreements. A fair level of support must be identified as a hard entitlement for both educational leave and residency sponsorship. As with maternal leave, it need not all be taken, but should not be denied. Moreover, educational leave may have to be encouraged, as those individuals who have the strongest desire to prove themselves and are most likely to burn out are the ones least likely to ask for time off.

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Another area of policy that is unfair is that different programmes have different rank requisites. The Advanced Degree Completion Plan, for example, was only for officers. If we truly wish to be a learning organization, to be replete with life-long learners, we must consider or reconsider a few things. Adults seek the education they need to grow and perform. Blocking access to desired training is a significant de-motivator in a knowledge-based workforce. The specialized skills delivered in advanced programmes are increasingly needed at all levels. Finally, as the external job market tightens in the coming years, the CF will be well served by learning to better develop and to advance in-house our best and brightest.

The restricted release and payback rules can be quite unbalanced in some sponsored programmes. That there is one month restricted release for every $2,000 is quite normal; however, the restricted release for some programmes does not begin until graduation. For part-time learning, that can be two to seven years after having begun. The CF gained the advantage of the newly acquired skills throughout while the individuals largely gave up their own time and family time for study. This was recognized, and some programmes, such as the Educational Reserve Programme, have no restricted release provision. This is a good step; however, the various programmes must be fair across the board. I talked with some people who had not finished their education and were pretty certain they would never finish even after years of study and work. At this point, they were considering cancelling their school, just so they could complete their mandatory service and retire. To lose all that work and the qualification when coming up to retirement is a shame.

Military life includes postings to new jobs (some much more challenging than others), promotions to new levels of responsibility, deployment to war and peacekeeping missions, surge periods at work, et cetera. These life changes can cause disruption in educational endeavours. Most distance learning programmes are willing to accept a certain amount of leeway in completion time. What poses greater difficulty is the loss in momentum for the individual. If the person is burning out, to be pulled from the educational goal for military reasons can easily lead to subconscious withdrawal from the education plan without consciously admitting it and/or cancelling the programme. The added stress of payback of sponsorship funds, restricted release rules, being seen as a failure, et cetera, all make it very easy to ignore the problem. However, that is not an effective method in dealing with stress. That “ball of worry” will remain, taking a piece of that person away from family, the CF, and themselves. The CF should be willing to accept delays and cancellations on programme completion. Payback of sponsorship funds and restricted release periods should be abolished for part-time learning programmes. Also, the administrator for the sponsorship programme should actively track programme delays. Allowing a member to sit inactive in a programme for a year or more is not helping the member. Intervention is required either to break the inertia or to recommend revision of goals—normally to drop education.

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Conclusion

Military members who undertake significant distance education while remaining at work are at great risk of damage to self and family. The CF risks the burnout of those who are some of the most driven, and who epitomize the values that we espouse. At a time when formal qualifications grow in demand by the organization and by the individual, we will likely continue to encourage our members to take education. A chosen few will be fully sponsored to receive training on military time, while the rest will do so on their family’s time.

The best education helps individuals grow along their career path, and increases options for good employment within the CF and on departure. Good education also offers better performance from the individual in their current and future jobs, provides a stronger cadre for senior positions, and shows the larger Canadian population that the CF is a good place to learn and grow. Our challenge is to deliver the best education in the best way. A blend of learning and policy supports can lift some of the worst barbs from the road to life-long learning. The key points for improvement include helping students improve their decision-making and coping skills through conferences and training at the Base/Wing level, and to level programmes to ensure fairness, especially as regards time for study to those who need it most. Discretion of the commander is likely the worst way to implement educational leave.

Part-time education will remain a challenging endeavour that will pose great risk to quality of life. When the costs are being paid by their families, knowing that members are being treated fairly as compared to other part-time learners in the CF is also very important. The members will be hard put to find appropriate balance between their goals and responsibilities, but hopefully, they will soon be better armed to face those challenges. When found, the balance will enable and encourage life-long growth.

Anyone with questions or wishing to read the thesis may contact the author at bernie_thorne@yahoo.com.


Major Bernie Thorne joined the Canadian Forces in 1987 from Newfoundland/Labrador. Graduating from the Royal Military College, Saint Jean, Quebec, with a BSc in 1992, he carried on to air navigator training in Winnipeg. Posted to Greenwood to fly on the CP140 Aurora, he flew all navigator (now air combat systems officer [ACSO]) seats, finishing as Tactical Navigator and Crew Commander. Flying operationally for six years at 405 Squadron (Sqn), training five years at 404 Sqn, and operational test & evaluation (OT&E) for four years at Maritime Proving and Evaluation Unit (MPEU), he has flown in support of many other government departments, including over several major disasters. While on tour at Kandahar Airfield, he received his current posting to lead the Air Force Experimentation Centre (AFEC), a section of CFAWC, where the team works to identify, assess, and push the potential of new technologies to improve the effectiveness and/or efficiency of the Air Force mission. He recently completed his MSc from Leicester, United Kingdom, through the Advanced Degree Completion Plan.

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List of Abbreviations

AE―action episode
AO―Achievement goal Orientation
CF―Canadian Forces
sqn―squadron

 

Notes

[1]. M. Herbert, Staying the Course: A Study in Online Student Satisfaction and Retention (Online Journal of Distance Learning Administration, vol. 9, no. 4, winter 2006), http://www.westga.edu/~distance/ojdla/winter94/herbert94.htm (accessed June 3, 2011).  (return)

[2]. K. Sparks and M. Simonson, eds., “Annual Proceedings of Selected Research and Development Papers” presented at the National Convention of the Association for Educational Communications and Technology [AECT] 22nd, Long Beach, California, February 16–20, 2000 (Washington, DC: Association for Educational Communications and Technology, 2000), 213. (return)

[3]. R. Menager-Beeley, “Student Success in Web Based Distance Learning: Measuring Motivation to Identify at Risk Students and Improve Retention in On-Line Classes,” in Webnet 2001, World Conference on the WWW and Internet Proceeding, Orlando, FL, October 23–27, 2001, 1. (return)

[4]. G. Lauri, “Barriers to Learners’ Successful Completion of VET Flexible Delivery Programmes,” In Research to Reality: Putting VET Research to Work (proceedings of the Australian Vocational Education and Training Research Association (AVETRA) 4th Conference, Adelaide, Australia, March 28–30, 2001), http://www.avetra.org.au/PAPERS%202001/grace.pdf, 4. (link no longer active). (return)

[5]. A. Berker, et al, “Work First, Study Second: Adult Undergraduates Who Combine Employment and Postsecondary Enrolment” (U.S. Department of Education, Institute of Education Sciences, National Center for Education Statistics), http://nces.ed.gov/pubs2003/2003167.pdf (accessed June 3, 2011). (return)

[6]. Member of Canadian Forces, anonymous interview with the author, n.p., n.d. (return)

[7]. Member of Canadian Forces, anonymous interview with the author, n.p., n.d. (return)

[8]. C. Maslach and M. Leiter, The Truth About Burnout: How Organizations Cause Personal Stress and What to do About It (San Francisco: Jossey-Bass Publishers, 1997). (return)

[9]. Member of Canadian Forces, anonymous interview with the author, n.p., n.d. (return)

[10]. Wilmar B. Schaufeli, Christian Maslach, and Tadeusz Marck, eds., Professional Burnout: Recent Developments in Theory & Research (Philadelphia, PA: Taylor & Francois, 1996). (return)

[11]. Wilmar B. Schaufeli, Christian Maslach, and Tadeusz Marck, eds., Professional Burnout: Recent Developments in Theory & Research (Philadelphia, PA: Taylor & Francois, 1996). (return)

[12]. University of Leicester: Centre for Labour Market Studies (CLMS), “Stress,” in CLMS, MSc in Training, version 9.2, module 1, unit 3, 15–25. (return)

[13]. L. J. Mullins, “The Nature of Work Motivation,” in CLMS, MSc in Training, version 9, reading 355, 421. (return)

[14]. Member of Canadian Forces, anonymous interview with the author, n.p., n.d. (return)

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