Impact of Service Package Offered on Student Involvement: Case of Distance Education in Sri Lanka

H.C. Dassanayake and B. Nishantha


Despite its effectiveness, a higher student drop-out rate and lower student academic excellence are perceived as critical issues in the Distance Education (DE) system. Previous studies have emphasised on diverting attention towards core and peripheral services offered by DE institutes as a contextual solution. However, overcoming these issues only via the services offered is questionable as Students Involvement (SI) has been identified as a success factor in DE. Therefore, this paper investigates the impact core and peripheral services offered by DE institutes have on SI. Two hypotheses were developed through a literature review and tested using a sample of 356 undergraduates of a DE institute, drawn using simple random technique. Data analysis supported the significant positive impact of peripheral services on SI yet, rejected that of core services. These findings are imperative in designing services offered by DE institutes and, thereby addressing the prevailing issues that hinder the system’s effectiveness.

Keywords:    Core Services, Peripheral Services, Student Involvement, Distance Education