EDET 674- Week 1
Essential Question: What theories or research can inform your current practice of distance learning?
More Than Two Million Distance Education Students Expected by 2002 (1999 Council for Higher Education Accreditation).
I found a web article from CHEA (Council for Higher Education Accreditation), when online learning was just making its way into the education industry. Even at that time, it was recognized as being a fast growing avenue for alternative learning. The article talked about the lack of qualified teachers and equipment at that time. These challenges are no longer an issue in our current day.
The first time I really heard of Distance Education was from a DeVry online university TV commercial a long time ago. I remember hearing the benefits of taking classes at your convenience. Today, Distance Learning is now a common method for homeschoolers and even offers the alternative classes to wayward students. The resources for online independent today, are limitless. We can learn a new language, write a software program or repair a car engine all without leaving your living room.
Although Moor & Kearsley might define distance education differently, I will define distance education as an online class, comparable to this EDET 674 course. I do believe that Distance Learning has changed the delivery of learning. In my experience, the online classes do require that the student be more organized than the usual traditional “in-class” student. Also, online classes can require more work, in my opinion. I have learned with traditional classes that a large portion of my grade was showing up in class. Participation versus attendance is usually the requirement for online classes. Group projects usually involve the students being self-motivated to coordinate meetings and timelines.
Our textbook supports that there is no significance difference to the effectiveness or average grade score of the learners when comparing traditional classrooms to distance online classes (Moor & Kearsley, 2011). I would have to agree with the cost effective benefit. Reports show that distance classes do save faculty time and other hidden costs, plus there is more convenience for both the students and the instructor.
E-learning does save me a lot of time and of course money when compared to traditional classes. I do not have to drive to campus or purchase a parking pass. Thanks to this technology I can have multiple choices and freely select for the most suitable training course for myself. I don’t have to stay far from family or separated from work to complete my willingness of learning.
“Teaching degrees train professionals to educate learners of diverse ages, in diverse environments. Teaching has come a long way, moving from classical theoretic textbook studies to more applied, interactive and career oriented style of learning…
Distance or online learning is a mode of study that allows students to study most or all of a course without attending at a campus-based institution. Distance can refer to both material and interaction. Distance learning provides access to learning when the source of information and the learners are separated by time and distance, or both.
During this type of education students communicate with the faculty and other students via e-mail, electronic forums, videoconferencing, chat rooms, bulletin boards, instant messaging and other forms of computer-based interaction.
The programmes often include a online training system and tools to produce a virtual classroom. The tuition fees for distance learning vary from institution to programme to country. It is certain that the student saves expenses related to accommodation and transportation, because you can maintain your current living expenses. Distance learning is also a great solution for people that already have a job, and still want or need further education” (DistanceLearningPortal.com).
I would think the method to stay update to date on current trends for Distance Learning is different than traditional classes, as mentioned there are different challenges. Conferences, Email articles, workshops and or course E-Learning (like the Distance Learning Portal websites) sites are common events to inform us of new technologies. I have many teacher friends that attend summer conventions to learn team building and new methods for teaching. I plan to participate in these Educational workshops as well.
Moore, Michael G, and Kearsley, Greg. (2011, April). Distance Education: A Systems View of Online Learning 3rd edition.
Council for Higher Education Accreditation. (1999). Retrieved on September 8, 2016 from http://www.chea.org/Research/distance-learning/distance-learning-2.asp
StudyPortals B.V. (2016). 6 Online Short Courses in Teaching by universities in United States Retrieved on September 8, 2016 from http://www.distancelearningportal.com/study-options-c/short/269779239/teaching-united-states.html