Factors Related to Students’ Drop Out of a Distance Language Learning Programme

Rahmat Budiman

Abstract


This paper presents a study that examined the reasons for dropping out of a distance language learning programme
offered by an open university in Indonesia. A purposive sample of students who registered for online English writing
courses at the university was used. To gain a better understanding of the issues, the study also sought information
from online tutors. A longitudinal research design employing qualitative research method was used over four stages
of data collection. Open-ended question surveys were adopted to gain an understanding of underlying reasons for
persisting or discontinuing their studies. Semi-structured interviews were conducted at each stage to obtain deeper
information from the students and the online tutors. The data was analysed with NVivo version 10. The findings of
the open-ended question surveys and the interviews indicated that the major reasons that led the students to drop out
were lack of basic skills in English, unmet expectations, feelings of isolation, and the inability to balance work,
family, and study responsibilities. The study offers a theoretical framework to describe the factors related to student
dropout from a distance language learning programme. This study also offers models of interaction, teaching and
learning in distance language learning to minimise the dropout rate.


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DOI: https://doi.org/10.5430/jct.v7n2p12

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Journal of Curriculum and Teaching

ISSN 1927-2677 (Print) ISSN 1927-2685 (Online)

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