Award Date


Degree Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)


Educational Leadership

First Committee Member

Vicki J. Rosser

Second Committee Member

LeAnn Putney

Third Committee Member

Nancy Lough

Fourth Committee Member

Kendall Hartley

Number of Pages



Over the past decade, institutions of higher education have seen enrollments in distance education, especially in the form of online learning, proliferate in striking numbers. In fact, some traditional colleges and universities are only experiencing real institutional growth in the areas of online learning. Even though a major push to increase the availability of distance education technology has occurred, effective adoption has not always followed suit. In hopes of speeding up the diffusion process, many colleges and universities have begun to contemplate the increased integration and institutional adoption of online learning. One of the most critical factors administrators must consider is the approval and acceptance by their faculty members. In order to gain an increased understanding of the adoption process, this qualitative study describes the lived experiences and perceptions of faculty members who have chosen to adopt online distance education. Utilizing the Diffusion of Innovations theory as a conceptual framework, this case study describes nine distinct faculty members' processes and experiences regarding the adoption of online distance education. This study focuses on why faculty members decided to adopt online distance education, their innovation-decision process, and how teaching online has impacted their role as a faculty member.


Adoption; College teachers; Diffusion; Distance education; Faculty; Higher education; Online learning; School enrollment; Universities and colleges



File Format


Degree Grantor

University of Nevada, Las Vegas




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