Date of Award



© 2019 Katrina Kremer

Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Education (EdD)



First Advisor

Marilyn Newell

Second Advisor

Jessica Branch

Third Advisor

Kristin Cuilla


Mindset has been studied in multiple traditional school settings, but its interaction with transactional distance in a virtual school environment is missing from the current research. This dissertation explores the experiences of students and learning coaches in a virtual high school through a series of interviews in order to present a better understanding of how students and learning coaches perceive the role of mindset and transactional distance in their interactions with each other, the content, and the teacher. The case study design applied the lenses of Transactional Distance Theory and Mindset Theory to descriptive coding of interview transcripts and relevant documents and concluded that transactional distance, while at least partially constructed by the student and enabled by the learning coach, contributes to the student’s sense of isolation, the student’s reliance on the learning coach, the increased need for a student to be able to function autonomously and exhibit a growth mindset, and the increased demands on the learning coach above what was initially intended in the virtual model design for that role.


Ed.D. Dissertation