E-Learning: Emergence of theProfession
Holly Heston, John P. Sharp, and Jennifer SolimanSeptember 2012 The purpose of this report is to summarize the evolution of e-learning. The report beginswith the roots of e-learning - distance education and educational technology. Followingthat is a presentation of two current philosophies: transactional distance, which canapply not only to elearning but any kind of distance learning, and connectivism, whichis tied specifically to today’s learning technologies. The emergence of the MOOC isalso briefly discussed. Supplementing these sections is a hyper-glossary linking thelearner to various web sites discussing other philosophies in e-learning. The report endswith a brief reflection on what it means to be a professional in a field that is constantlychanging.
20th Century Uses of Technology for Learning
This section summarizes, in three corresponding subsections, the work of Robert A. Reiser’s two-part article,
The History of Instructional Design and Technology,
as well as Farhad Saba’s
An Introduction to Distance Education and e-learning
(2008).The progress of American education shows gradualism, though every major technological evolution has always accompanied high levels of inaccurate hypeabout the revolutionizing of our educational institutions. The one effect technologyhas had on education and society in general is that greater amounts of people fromall socioeconomic backgrounds tend to gain access to communication (i.e., how wetransmit information to each other). As technology continues to pervade society, it willeventually pervade American educational institutions so that all people, students andteachers are eventually exposed to and practice a daily combination of traditional andtechnological instruction.
Instructional Media in the 20th Century
At the turn of the 20th century, school museums were the way many people becameexposed to learning and culture. Museums used films, slides and photographs to relayfacts and information, but in no way were the materials thought of as replacements of