DREAM 2024 – February 19–22, 2024

Achieving the Dream logo

The 20th anniversary of Achieving the Dream’s Annual DREAM conference from February 19 to 22, 2024 in Orlando, FL.

Creating Online Environments to Promote Motivation and Learning: Perspectives from Students

Tuesday, February 20, 12:15-12:45 pm ET

Success rates in online courses are often lower than in courses delivered in-person, with some studies showing that online courses exacerbate inequitable outcomes. In this session, attendees will learn about an evidence-based framework of skills and mindsets that can support student learning and success in online courses. Using this framework, researchers from the Postsecondary Teaching with Technology Collaborative presented findings on how students perceive online learning environments. Drawing on survey and interview data collected at eight colleges, the session will include examples of course design features and instructional strategies that enhance students’ motivation, sense of belonging, and self-efficacy as well as behaviors such as time management and help-seeking. Presenters also draw on student data to identify aspects of online learning environments that create barriers to success, particularly for students from historically underrepresented groups in higher education.

Presentation Materials 


  • Krystal Thomas, senior education researcher, SRI Education
  • Akilah Thompson, senior research assistant, Community College Research Center (CCRC)
  • Jill Taylor, assistant professor of mathematics, Tulsa Community College

Categories: Past Event