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North American University

Education Department
M.Ed. in EDLE & CUIN
Name: Ainura Zhigitekova

Date: November 1, 2015

Topic Selected:
Traditionally, distance education courses lack face-to-face interaction. What are the consequences
of lack of interaction in distance education? What can be done to increase interaction in distance
education (online courses) so that same type of learning can occur with face-to-face learning?
What does the literature/research say about this issue/topic? By using NAU
Library or Online Search engines, conduct a literature review.

You need to include 5 different sources (book, journal article, web article
etc.) in your review. Try to use current sources as much as possible.

You need to summarize and synthesize your sources by discussing a

common theme or issue.

You don't need to critique your sources

You don't need to evaluate your sources (if the sources are trustworthy,
weather the author has a bias or not)

You need to provide background information such as history and


Brief Literature Review:

A thorough review of online research overwhelmingly
supports the view that online learning can be just as good as,
andin some casesbetter than, face-to-face, traditional learning
Lorenzo and Moore (2002).
The increased demand in distance learning courses has raised questions about the
need for interactive business communication among students as well as teacher-student
immediacy, features that online courses may lack (Wardrope, 2001). Research suggests
that both interactive competencies and immediacy behaviors can indeed be present in
Internet-based classes, but only in a form that is dramatically different from the
traditional roles of instructor and student (Conaway, R. N., Easton, S. S., & Schmidt, W.
V. (2005).
Moore and Kearsley (1996) defined three types of interaction in online classes: learner
to instructor, learner to content, and learner to learner. All three types of interactivity
promote engaged learning and help develop collaborative learning experiences.
Consequently, many instructors use strategies to ensure a high level of participation,
such as requiring a specific number of student comments either per assignment or

Immediacy behaviors between instructor and learner have been recognized as strong
contributing factors to successful collaborative learning (Gunawardena & Zittle, 1997).
Common face-to-face behaviors such as smiling, using gestures, and making eye
contact are not available in an online environment. Nevertheless, using first names in
online postings, sharing personal stories and examples, responding quickly, writing in a
friendly tone, and creating a safe psychological environment for student participation can
provide the needed social presence that encourages students to engage (Swan &
Richardson, 2003).
Thus, the computer seemingly assumes the role of a social actor as it dispenses social
approval (LaRose & Whitten, 2000, p. 326) and promotes Internet dialogue. McFadzean
(2001) suggested that one of the most valuable elements of a virtual classroom is that
of collaboration and dialogue.


What is your personal opinion on this issue? Do you agree with the
research? If you agree or disagree, please explain why?
Provide examples/experiences regarding this issue from school
perspective or If you are not working in a school, from your profession. Be
specific with your examples. You can mention software/hardware names,
specific methods that you plan to use, etc.
How would you implement this research in your career? (At least 1

Attending to Online MA degree is my first experience ever. I like its flexibility, yet its
isolated study is a bit difficult. I have a friend of mine who takes the same course and
whenever we meet we discuss the class, assignments and how we like the course
overall. For this semester I have only two classes, and I found them to be very
interesting. Both courses offer interactive components, constructive participation,
moreover, our professors often encourage interaction by requiring a specific number of
postings per student. For example, we need to post a message on a discussion board
at least 3 times a week (1 our response, 2 peer response). Although distance education
course lacks face-to-face interaction, we have immediacy in communication, we greet
each other through chat box, post messages, ask questions and discuss the topic.
Based on a review of the research and current practices, Creasman (2012) extracted
seven concrete measurement options in online courses.
1) Asynchronous activity, where students can interact with each other and course
materials anytime, 24/7;
2) Non-linear discussions on message boards and forums, where students can
participate in multiple conversations simultaneously;
3) Communication primarily via written text;
4) Slower communication between instructor and students, primarily via e-mail;
5) Greater social contact and time spent by instructor with students on website;
6) Greater volume of information and resources available;
7) Instructor's roles as a facilitator, "guide on the side," and also co-learner.
In conclusion, although distance education lacks face-to-face interaction, it creates
opportunities for increased student responsibility and greater communication with peers
through discussion of course concepts, while also preparing them for working in groups

and on virtual teams.


Cite at least 5 References in APA.

You may use for citing
your sources in APA style.

Berk, R. R. (2013). Face-to-Face versus Onoine Course Evaluations: A Consumers
Guide to Seven Strategies. Journal Of Online Learning & Teaching, 9(1), 140-148.
Cavanaugh, J. K., & Jackquemin, S.J. (2105). A Large Sample Comparison of Grade
Based Student Learnning Outcomes in Online vs. Face-to-Face Courses. Onine
Learning. 19(2), 25-32.
Conaway, R. N., Easton, S. S., & Schmidt, W. V. (2005). STRATEGIES FOR
Business Communication Quarterly, 68(1), 23-35. doi:10.1177/1080569904273300.
Drew, P., & Vivian, R.M. (1998). Socialization of Distance Education: The Web as
Enabler. Educational Resources Information Center (ERIC). IR 019279. Retrieved from
Sunny, L. Student Interaction Experiences in Distance Learning Courses, A
Phenomenological Study. Rossier School of Education. Los Angeles, CA 90089-4037.
Retrieved from