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Distance education Essay

Distance education dates back to at least as early as 1728 when an advertisement in the Boston Gazette promoted “Caleb Phillips, Teacher of the new method of Short Hand,” who sought students who wanted to learn through weekly mailed lessons. Similarly, Isaac Pitman taught shorthand in Great Britain via correspondence in the 1840s. Distance education has a long history, but its popularity and use has grown exponentially as more advanced technology has become available. By 2008, online learning programs were available in the United States in 44 states at the K-12 level.

Definition Education where teachers and students are separated in both place and time. They communicate at times of their own choosing by exchanging printed or electronic media, or through technology that allows them to communicate in real time or through other online ways. Advantages Distance Education does not require commuting, saving money otherwise spent on travel back and forth to school. Convenience and flexibility. You complete classes at your convenience. Accessibility. Live and study from anywhere while pursuing education of your choice.

Online classes address accessibility issues that some people with limited mobility encounter. Self-paced learning. Individualized Instruction. Vast resources readily available through the internet which are relatively inexpensive. Potential. The opportunities for distance education have exploded with the increased use of the internet. Many degrees are available through distance learning including high school, college and post graduate programs. Cost. Distance education is considerably cheaper than attending a traditional college. Key players in Distance Education

Students Faculty Facilitators Support staff Administrators Interaction and Technology in Distance Education Interaction is an important component of any learning experience. One of the most important factors relating to distance learning is the element of interaction as its much different of an environment in a traditional classroom than what occurs in distance learning. Learner Content LearnerInstructor LearnerLearner LearnerTechnology Synchronous vs Asynchronous Interaction In distance Education most interaction done Asynchronously; interaction between them is delayed.

One good example is a teacher may deliver the video instruction via email and the learner may respond in a later time. Synchronous interaction like in traditional classes where learners and instructors interact real time: you talk I immediately respond. This could be achieved in distance learning as when computer conferences are held at pre-established times via chat technologies. Distance Education Technologies The various technologies used in distance learning can be roughly divided into four categories, However many of these technologies could overlap into more than one category.

Print Technology The original form of Distance Education was correspondence courses, in which print material was mailed to students and returned to the teachers through the postal system. The University of London was the first university to offer distance learning degrees through correspondence, establishing its External Programme in 1858. This program is now known as the University of London International Programmes and includes Postgraduate, Undergraduate and Diploma degrees created by colleges such as the London School of Economics, Royal Holloway and Goldsmiths.

In the United States William Rainey Harper, first president of the University of Chicago developed the concept of extended education, whereby the research university had satellite colleges of education in the wider community. In 1892 he also encouraged the concept of correspondence school courses to further promote education, an idea that was put into practice by Columbia University Computer Technology Computer based technology includes email, online collaborations and web-based education as a means of delivering distance learning.

The widespread use of computers and the internet have made distance learning easier and faster, and today virtual schools and virtual universities deliver full curricula online. In 1996 Jones International University was launched and claims to be the first fully online university accredited by a regional accrediting association in the US. Video Technology Video techniques often used for distance learning include videotapes, satellites, television cables, and computers offer opportunities for

behavior modeling, demonstrations and instruction of abstract concept. Audio technology Offer cost effective ways to enhance distance learning courses. It can be as simple as a telephone with voicemail or it can be as complex as an audio conference with microphones and speakers. The very rapid spread of radio in the United States in the 1930s led to proposals to use it for distance education. By 1938, at least 200 city school systems, 25 state boards of education, and many colleges and universities broadcast educational programs for the public schools.

One line of thought was to use radio as a master teacher. ” Experts in given fields broadcast lessons for pupils within the many schoolrooms of the public school system, asking questions, suggesting readings, making assignments, and conducting tests. This mechanizes education and leaves the local teacher only the tasks of preparing for the broadcast and keeping order in the classroom. ” Research and Distance Education The University of the Philippines Open University (U. P. O. U.) is a public distance learning institution and research university that provides quality higher and continuing education to Filipinos through the distance education system.

Melinda dela Pena-Bandalaria (2007) in her article on Impact of ICT’s on open and distance learning in a Developing Country setting: The Philippine Experience, pointed out the distance education in the Philippines has undergone four general stages or generations. It also includes how quality of education is ensured in a technology-driven system of teaching and learning.

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