Given the federal thrust for educational reform and the growth of school choice options, parents are faced with increasing opportunities for educational placement options for their children including the recent composition of full-time online K-12 schools. Understanding parents’ perceived benefits, which inform their decision-making when choosing from a multitude of educational placement or school choice options, provides the educational community with information to better increase parent satisfaction. The potential increase in parent satisfaction has the ability to simultaneously increase student achievement. The purpose of this mixed methods study was to examine which perceived benefits parents held when choosing a full-time online educational placement for their child. This research study examined Middle Tennessee parents’ perceived benefits of full-time online education that led them to select this educational delivery model for their child. Additionally, this study utilized an online survey and interviews to obtain quantitative data and qualitative data in the form of descriptions of the participants’ shared experience with the phenomenon. Qualitative data were recorded and transcribed verbatim for each participant before the data was coded. This enabled data organization into significant statements for the development of essential structures of the parents’ experiences. Analytical and descriptive statistics were conducted prior to a synthesis of the quantitative and qualitative data, which rendered a comprehensive representation of the summary of both data sets. Trends from the survey data were compared to five identified themes generated from examining significant statements in the qualitative data. The findings of the study indicated parents’ perceived benefits of full-time online education center on academic quality, a safe educational environment, and an individualized learning pace for their child. The findings of this research provide support for exploring parents in the role of “consumers” which will enlighten an educational community that now functions in the role of “supplier.”

Library of Congress Subject Headings

Dissertations (EdD) -- Leadership, administration, and policy; Education -- Computer-assisted instruction; Home schooling; Web-based instruction -- Evaluation

Date of Award


School Affiliation

Graduate School of Education and Psychology



Degree Type


Degree Name


Faculty Advisor

Barner, Robert R.;