13 Responses

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  1. ez November 4, 2008 at 4:47 pm |

    I think it be good to start with what is (and is not) learning. All this stuff seems more about the environment where learning takes place instead of about what is learning? How do students best learn? What is in available online technologies to improve the efficacy of learning?

  2. nick November 4, 2008 at 5:21 pm |

    This was a good post. Online learning has really taken off with the aid of technology. I was very unsure about college classes online until I did more research. I came up with some pretty good sites about online education. My favorite by far is this one
    It really mapped out online learning. Hopefully it will help others out there.

  3. Ken Allan November 4, 2008 at 8:44 pm |

    Kia ora Britt.

    This is a hardy perennial I’m afraid. I’ve even listened to a debate where the terms ‘elearning’ and ‘online learning’ were disputed as meaning the same thing. Goodness knows how anyone can draw distinctions, but they can. And they seem to have no difficulty finding arguments to support their claims.

    Earlier this year I wrote an article on the topic of what elearning was all about. It seemed to spark some debate among my colleagues. These are areas of learning that are hottly debated today, often by people who have had little or no experience in the practices.

    ‘Twas ever thus in education. As Ken Robinson says, everyone has an interest in education. They also tend to think they know all about it, whether they have had any real experience in practicing teaching and learning or not. Online learning is no different in that regard.

    Ka kite

  4. Jeff November 6, 2008 at 9:07 am |

    Thanks for the post and the opportunity to comment.

    I found the “I believe..” bullet points to be of interest in understanding what you are trying to sort out here.

    To me it seems that one thing you are attempting to come to terms with about “online learning” perhaps rests with the distinction between formal and informal learning environments. Most of the bullets seem to fit into both categories..with a few exceptions. They are helpful as guideposts for you.

    While I’ll acknowledge that important role of more informal learning through PLE/N stuff you mention, the “small pieces loosely joined” thing…I think the real challenge is with the formal educational setting.

    I would be interested in how we move beyond what we believe about “online learning” to what we know from research about what teaching practices best support learning in web-based courses. I have lots of questions..here are a few:

    1) It may be AFO, but is formal on-line learning for everyone? Why / why not?

    2) What course design features are crucial in supporting successful online learning? Is this discipline specific?

    3) Does online teaching imply the need for the development of new teaching practices? If so, what do they look like? If not, why?

    4) If the informal (PLE/N) is shaping the notion of formal online learning…why do we need to even call it “online learning” anymore? Its just “L”earning.

  5. Frank Gulla November 6, 2008 at 10:47 am |

    Once again you have hit the nail on the head, pointing out that we should not be focused on the technology but on its use and results. How ironic that I am in an FLC about technology, teaching and learning. We have been focused on technology’s use, but I think I will re-examine my in light of your blog and relate them to the FLC’s efforts.

  6. Jeff Nugent November 6, 2008 at 11:35 am |

    @ Frank Gulla I find it interesting that is your take on the FLC Frank…that we are focusing on the technology. I don’t see it that way at all. My view is that we have been discussing the conceptual drivers and key questions to explore (concept of engagement and examining the recent ECAR study). We have not focused on any technology tools at all…importantly we have positioned the conversation to help us explore how technology can be pressed into the service to enhance learning. At some point it does come down to how we use the technology in teaching / learning…and that involves the development of both technical and pedagogical expertise.

  7. SHUBHRANSHU AGARWAL November 21, 2008 at 12:28 am |

    Thanks for sharing valuable information. I think that the result of any online tutoring and thus the satisfaction of students largely depend upon the applied teaching strategy and student’s own initiatives. Initial hurdles can be handled easily by using latest teaching software and technology. Recently, I have been at http://tutorskingdom.com/ , where I realized the ‘real’ difference between regular classes and online learning.

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