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A small group of faculty, staff, and administrators, known as the Online Learning Community (OLC) were collectively interested in enriching online learning at a Jesuit university. With a culture at this Jesuit and Mercy university driven by face-to-face (F2F) learning, the first step was to assess students’ perceptions of online learning from students who have taken online courses at the university. The survey, guided by best instructor practices in online learning and Jesuit philosophy, traditions, and concepts, was designed to explore students’ perceptions, experiences, and practices in online learning. Students (N=484) self-enrolled in the study and included students from all the colleges in the university and across four campuses. The most notable response in the data was students’ (72%) desire for more online learning opportunities at the host university. The freedom and flexibility afforded in online classes was prevalent in students open-ended statements about online learning but additionally emphasized the importance of instructor qualities of being organized in course delivery, availability, and effective communication skills. In this study, OLC members sought to place students’ perceptions at the core of efforts to inform online learning at this Jesuit and Mercy university. The findings enrich and demonstrate linkages with core Jesuit traditions and concepts.



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