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1. Distance Education: An Overview (2) 2. Strategies for Teaching at a Distance (6) 3. Instructional Development for Distance Education (10) 4. Evaluation for Distance Educators (14) 5. Instructional Television (19) 6. Computers in Distance Education (23) 7. Print in Distance Education (27) 8. Strategies for Learning at a Distance (31) 9. Distance Education: Research (35) 10. Interactive Videoconferencing in Distance Education (38) 11. Distance Education and the WWW (43) 12. Copyright and Distance Education (47) 13. Glossary of Distance Education Terminology (52)
CHAPTER: 1 DISTANCE EDUCATION AT A GLANCE – an Overview What is Distance Education? Within a context of rapid technological change and shifting market conditions, the education system is challenged with providing increased educational opportunities without increased budgets. Many educational institutions are answering this challenge by developing distance education programs. At its most basic level, distance education takes place when a teacher and student(s) are separated by physical distance, and technology (i.e., voice, video, data, and print), often in concert with face-to-face communication, is used to bridge the instructional gap. These types of programs can provide adults with a second chance at a college education, reach those disadvantaged by limited time, distance or physical disability, and update the knowledge base of workers at their places of employment. Is Distance Education Effective? Many educators ask if distant students learn as much as students receiving traditional face-to-face instruction. Research comparing distance education to traditional face-to-face instruction indicates that teaching and studying at a distance can be as effective as traditional instruction, when the method and technologies used are appropriate to the instructional tasks, there is student-to-student interaction, and when there is timely teacher-to-student feedback. How is Distance Education Delivered? A wide range of technological options are available to the distance educator. They fall into four major categories: Voice - Instructional audio tools include the interactive technologies of telephone, audio-conferencing, and short-wave radio. Passive (i.e., one-way) audio tools include tapes and radio. Video - Instructional video tools include still images such as slides, preproduced moving images (e.g., film, videotape), and real-time moving images combined with audio-conferencing (one-way or two-way video with two-way audio). Data - Computers send and receive information electronically. For this reason, the term "data" is used to describe this broad category of instructional tools. Computer applications for distance education are varied and include: Computer-assisted instruction (CAI) - uses the computer as a selfcontained teaching machine to present individual lessons. Computer-managed instruction (CMI) - uses the computer to organize instruction and track student records and progress. The instruction itself need not be delivered via a computer, although CAI is often combined with CMI.
Distance Education at a Glance
Computer-mediated education (CME) - describes computer applications that facilitate the delivery of instruction. Examples include Electronic mail, fax, real-time computer conferencing, and World-Wide Web applications.
Print - is a foundational element of distance education programs and the basis from which all other delivery systems have evolved. Various print formats are available including: textbooks, study guides, workbooks, course syllabi, and case studies. Which Technology is Best? Although technology plays a key role in the delivery of distance education, educators must remain focused on instructional outcomes, not the technology of delivery. The key to effective distance education is focusing on the needs of the learners, the requirements of the content, and the constraints faced by the teacher, before selecting a delivery system. Typically, this systematic approach will result in a mix of media, each serving a specific purpose. For example: A strong print component can provide much of the basic instructional content in the form of a course text, as well as readings, the syllabus, and day-to-day schedule. Interactive audio or video conferencing can provide real time face-to-face (or voice-to-voice) interaction. This is also an excellent and cost-effective way to incorporate guest speakers and content experts. Computer conferencing or electronic mail can be used to send messages, assignment feedback, and other targeted communication to one or more class members. It can also be used to increase interaction among students. Pre-recorded video tapes can be used to present class lectures and visually oriented content. Fax can be used to distribute assignments, last minute announcements, to receive student assignments, and to provide timely feedback. Using this integrated approach, the educator's task is to carefully select among the technological options. The goal is to build a mix of instructional media, meeting the needs of the learner in a manner that is instructionally effective and economically prudent. Effective Distance Education Without exception, effective distance education programs begin with careful planning and a focused understanding of course requirements and student needs. Appropriate technology can only be selected once these elements are understood in detail. There is no mystery to the way effective distance education programs develop. They don't happen spontaneously; they evolve through the hard work and dedicated efforts of many individuals and organizations. In fact, successful distance education programs rely on the
Distance Education at a Glance
consistent and integrated efforts of students, faculty, facilitators, support staff, and administrators. Key Players in Distance Education The following briefly describes the roles of these key players in the distance education enterprise and the challenges they face. Students - Meeting the instructional needs of students is the cornerstone of every effective distance education program, and the test by which all efforts in the field are judged. Regardless of the educational context, the primary role of the student is to learn. This is a daunting task under the best of circumstances, requiring motivation, planning, and an ability to analyze and apply the instructional content being taught. When instruction is delivered at a distance, additional challenges result because students are often separated from others sharing their backgrounds and interests, have few if any opportunities to interact with teachers outside of class, and must rely on technical linkages to bridge the gap separating class participants. Faculty - The success of any distance education effort rests squarely on the shoulders of the faculty. In a traditional classroom setting, the instructor's responsibility includes assembling course content and developing an understanding of student needs. Special challenges confront those teaching at a distance. For example, the instructor must: Develop an understanding of the characteristics and needs of distant students with little first-hand experience and limited, if any, face-to-face contact. Adapt teaching styles taking into consideration the needs and expectations of multiple, often diverse, audiences. Develop a working understanding of delivery technology, while remaining focused on their teaching role. Function effectively as a skilled facilitator as well as content provider. Facilitators - The instructor often finds it beneficial to rely on a site facilitator to act as a bridge between the students and the instructor. To be effective, a facilitator must understand the students being served and the instructor's expectations. Most importantly, the facilitator must be willing to follow the directive established by the teacher. Where budget and logistics permit, the role of on-site facilitators has increased even in classes in which they have little, if any, content expertise. At a minimum, they set up equipment, collect assignments, proctor tests, and act as the instructor's on-site eyes and ears. Support Staff - These individuals are the silent heroes of the distance education enterprise and ensure that the myriad details required for program success are dealt with effectively. Most successful distance education programs consolidate support service functions to include student registration, materials
Distance Education at a Glance
duplication and distribution, textbook ordering, securing of copyright clearances, facilities scheduling, processing grade reports, managing technical resources, etc.. Support personnel are truly the glue that keeps the distance education effort together and on track. Administrators - Although administrators are typically influential in planning an institution's distance education program, they often lose contact or relinquish control to technical managers once the program is operational. Effective distance education administrators are more than idea people. They are consensus builders, decision makers, and referees. They work closely with technical and support service personnel, ensuring that technological resources are effectively deployed to further the institution's academic mission. Most importantly, they maintain an academic focus, realizing that meeting the instructional needs of distant students is their ultimate responsibility.
Distance Education at a Glance
the teacher receives no visual information from the distant sites. Before developing something new. In fact. It is difficult to carry on a stimulating teacher-class discussion when spontaneity is altered by technical requirements and distance. Living in different communities. instructors often comment that the focused preparation required by distance teaching improves their overall teaching and empathy for their students. Why Teach at a Distance? Many teachers feel the opportunities offered by distance education outweigh the obstacles. or preparing to make a comment. for example. and experiential backgrounds Improving Planning and Organization In developing or adapting distance instruction. tired. Those cues that do exist are filtered through technological devices such as video monitors. the distant teacher has few. In contrast. if any. Separation by distance also affects the general rapport of the class. confused. There are several research summaries available. The student who is frustrated. although its presentation requires new strategies and additional preparation time.g. The attentive teacher consciously and subconsciously receives and analyzes these visual cues and adjusts the course delivery to meet the needs of the class during a particular lesson. check and review existing materials for content and presentation ideas. Suggestions for planning and organizing a distance delivered course include: Begin the course planning process by studying distance education research findings. talking among themselves or even in the room. and print) not Distance Education at a Glance 6 . pondering a difficult concept. geographic regions. The teacher might never really know. Without the use of a real-time visual medium such as television. A quick glance. audio. or even states deprives the teacher and students of a common community link. or bored is equally evident. reveals who is attentively taking notes.CHAPTER: 2 STRATEGIES FOR TEACHING AT A DISTANCE What's Different About Distant Teaching? Classroom teachers rely on a number of visual and unobtrusive cues from their students to enhance their delivery of instructional content. economic. if students are asleep. cultural.. data. the core content remains basically unchanged. visual cues. for example. video. The challenges posed by distance education are countered by opportunities to: Reach a wider student audience Meet the needs of students who are unable to attend on-campus classes Involve outside speakers who would otherwise be unavailable Link students from different social. Analyze and understand the strengths and weaknesses of the possible delivery systems available to you (e.
and that humor is culturally specific and won't be perceived the same way by all. Be aware of students' needs in meeting standard university deadlines. handouts. but in terms of learner needs and course requirements before selecting a mix of instructional technology. fiber optic cable. despite the lag time often involved in rural mail delivery. and other readings prior to distribution. If course materials are sent by mail. To help students keep materials organized. in terms of both content and preferred learning styles. Be sensitive to different communication styles and varied cultural backgrounds. Discussing the instructor's background and interests is equally important. not placing blame for the occasional technical difficulty.g. Consider the following strategies for meeting students' needs: Assist students in becoming both familiar and comfortable with the delivery technology and prepare them to resolve the technical problems that will arise. only in terms of how they are delivered (e. consider binding the syllabus. Focus on joint problem solving.. make sure they are received well before class begins. Hands-on training with the technology of delivery is critical for both teacher and students. Remember. The logistical difficulties of distant teaching increase with each additional site. microwave. etc. for example. and standards. Once procedures have been established.). satellite. Consider a pre-class session in which the class meets informally using the delivery technology and learns about the roles and responsibilities of technical support staff. guidelines. Make students aware of and comfortable with new patterns of communication to be used in the course (Holmberg. Learn about students' backgrounds and experiences. students must quickly become comfortable with the nature of teaching and learning at a distance. Distance Education at a Glance 7 . consistently uphold them. Provide a toll-free "hotline" for reporting and rectifying problems. At the start of class initiate a frank discussion to set rules. Make sure each site is properly equipped with functional and accessible equipment.. Efforts should be made to adapt the delivery system to best motivate and meet the needs of the students. Meeting Student Needs To function effectively. Start off slowly with a manageable number of sites and students. that students may have different language skills. 1985). Remember that students must take an active role in the distance delivered course by independently taking responsibility for their learning.
not the delivery system. the better. Use short. review. one-on-one phone discussions and electronic mail communication can be especially effective. rather than developing new abilities. cohesive statements and ask direct questions. presenting content at a distance is usually more time consuming than presenting the same content in a traditional classroom.. realizing that technical linkages might increase the time it takes for students to respond. Diversify and pace course activities and avoid long lectures. effective distance teaching requires the enhancement of existing skills. the earlier in the course this is done. Distance Education at a Glance 8 . Use locally relevant case studies and examples as often as possible to assist students in understanding and applying course content. Be aware that student participants will have different learning styles. And finally. and remediation. Pay special attention to the following: Realistically assess the amount of content that can be effectively delivered in the course. Humanize the course by focusing on the students. Intersperse content presentations with discussions and student-centered exercises.relax. Be concise. Towards this end. repetition. while others will excel when working independently.Use Effective Teaching Skills For the most part. Because of the logistics involved. Participants will quickly grow comfortable with the process of distance education and the natural rhythm of effective teaching will return.. Develop strategies for student reinforcement. Some will learn easily in group settings. Typically. Consider using a print component to supplement non-print materials.
Maintaining and sharing electronic journal entries can be very effective toward this end. including one-on-one and conference calls. and instructional concerns. require students to contact you and interact among themselves via electronic mail. so they become comfortable with the process. and contact them individually after class. and e-mail for feedback regarding course content. Have students keep a journal of their thoughts and ideas regarding the course content. using fax or electronic mail. especially early in the course. consider personal visits as well. Integrate a variety of delivery systems for interaction and feedback. In addition. delivery problems. To improve interaction and feedback. Distance Education at a Glance 9 . video. At the same time. if practical. out-of-class phone conferences. and computer conferencing. Arrange telephone office hours using a toll-free number. Call on individual students to ensure that all participants have ample opportunity to interact. Set evening office hours if most of your students work during the day. Early in the course. consider the following: Use pre-class study questions and advance organizers to encourage critical thinking and informed participation on the part of all learners. Have students submit journal entries frequently. referring to additional sources for supplementary information. Make detailed comments on written assignments. as well as their individual progress and other concerns. the facilitator can act as your on-site "eyes and ears". E-mail. Use pre-stamped and addressed postcards. relevancy. politely but firmly discourage individual students or sites from monopolizing class time. Realize that it will take time to improve poor communication patterns. Use an on-site facilitator to stimulate interaction when distant students are hesitant to ask questions or participate. Take note of students who don't participate during the first session. When feasible. Contact each site (or student) every week if possible. pace.Improving Interaction and Feedback Using effective interaction and feedback strategies will enable the instructor to identify and meet individual student needs while providing a forum for suggesting course improvements. fax. Return assignments without delay.
interests and educational levels. where the instructor and students may share limited common background and typically have minimal face-to-face contact. Although instructional development models and processes. determine how they will apply Distance Education at a Glance 10 . and adapting instruction based on identifiable learner needs and content requirements. cultural backgrounds. and revision. evaluation. determine the need for instruction by considering what external data verify the need. developing.CHAPTER: 3 INSTRUCTIONAL DEVELOPMENT FOR DISTANCE EDUCATION The Need for Instructional Development Instructional development provides a process and framework for systematically planning. the majority follow the same basic stages of design.To begin. This process is essential in distance education.To better understand the distant learners and their needs. and what past experiences indicate that the instruction being planned can effectively meet this need. Assess their familiarity with the various instructional methods and delivery systems being considered. The Instructional Development Process The Design Stage -Determine the need for instruction . development. what factors led to the instructional need. consider their ages. -Analyze your audience . past experiences.
for the most part. are being considered. Distance Education at a Glance 11 . -Establish instructional goals/objectives . the instructor should review existing materials. such as tele-courses. learning is impeded. If pre-packaged materials are to be used. -Review existing materials . discuss potential content examples with a sampling of the target audience. This is a special challenge in rural and multicultural settings where the teacher’s realm of experience and related content examples may be foreign to distant learners.Next.g. -Select/develop materials and methods . The best examples are "transparent".Based on the instructional problems. undergraduate/graduate). and an understanding of the desired course content. This personalized attention will also show students that the instructor is more than an anonymous presence. is taught using examples that relate the content to a context understood by the students. establish instructional goals and objectives. consider developing ‘wrap around’ introductions. If examples are irrelevant. linked by electronic technology. and note whether the class will consist of a broad mix of students or discrete subgroups with different characteristics (e. they may have little relevance for distant learners who come to the course with widely varied and non-traditional experiential backgrounds. Instructional materials should not be used solely because they are readily available or have been effective in a traditional classroom setting. This is especially true if pre-packaged materials.The development of instructional materials and selection of delivery methods will often require integrating print. conclusions. the audience analysis. and summaries that specifically relate the learning materials to the instructional context of the distant student. Colleagues who have worked with the target population can also offer advice. -Organize and develop content . allowing the learners to focus on the content being presented. instructional goals and objectives.Based on the nature of the problem as well as student needs and characteristics. When possible. The Development Stage -Create a content outline . while objectives are specific steps leading to goal attainment. the instructor should visit distant sites and interview prospective students. Content. Goals are broad statements of instructional intent. both individually and in small groups. Whereas many pre-packaged instructional tools are developed and marketed to reach students with similar backgrounds and experiences. To address this problem.Perhaps the greatest challenge facing the distance educator is creating student-relevant examples. urban/rural.the knowledge gained in the course. create an outline of the content to be covered.
the first actual use will also serve as the "field test" for determining effectiveness. technical or delivery concerns.Plan how and when to evaluate the effectiveness of the instruction. video. The best approach often combines quantitative measurement of student performance with open-ended interviewing and non-participant observation to collect and assess information about attitudes toward the course's effectiveness and the delivery technology. For example.voice. based on identifiable learner needs. The Evaluation Stage -Review goals and objectives . Quantitative evaluation relies on a breadth of response and is patterned after experimental research focused on the collection and manipulation of statistically relevant quantities of data. Consider having a local facilitator run the evaluation session to encourage a more open discussion. Qualitative approaches may be of special value because the diversity of distant learners may defy relevant statistical stratification and analysis. content requirements. Formative evaluation can be used to revise instruction as the course is being developed and implemented. the distance educator can give students pre-addressed and stamped postcards to complete and mail after each session. Following course completion. and content areas in need of further coverage. The challenge here is to integrate delivery components. These "mini-evaluations" might focus on course strengths and weaknesses.One purpose of evaluation is to determine if the instructional methods and materials are accomplishing the established goals and objectives. For example. -Develop an evaluation strategy . Try to pre-test instruction on a small scale prior to implementation. using more subjective methods such as interviews and observation to query a smaller number of respondents in greater depth. In contrast. Distance Education at a Glance 12 . Summative evaluation is conducted after instruction is completed and provides a data base for course revision and future planning. consider a summative evaluation session in which students informally brainstorm ways to improve the course. Implementation of instruction represents the first real test of what has been developed. If this is not possible. Make sure the same delivery systems are available to all distant learners to avoid the need to create parallel learning experiences. and data technology in concert with face-to-face communication. Within the context of formative and summative evaluation. and technical constraints. data are collected through quantitative and qualitative methods. it does little good to rely on delivery technology that is unavailable to some class members. qualitative evaluation focuses on a depth of response.
Adhering to sound principles of instructional development won’t overcome all obstacles one encountered en route to developing effective distance education programs. The Revision Stage There is room for improvement in even the most carefully developed distance delivered course. and the constraints facing both teacher and students. increasing assignment feedback.Collect and analyze evaluation data . collect the evaluation data. or improving student-to-student interaction. Often. the requirements of the content. course revisions will be minor. provide a process and procedural framework for addressing the instructional challenges that will surely arise. and colleagues. content specialists.Following implementation of your course/materials. even appropriate on occasion. For this reason. and the need for revision should be anticipated. Results of this process should be tempered by the knowledge that the characteristics of each distant class will vary and that revisions required for one learner group may be inappropriate for a different student population. In fact. Careful analysis of these results will identify gaps or weaknesses in the instructional process. On other occasions. It will. however. It is equally important to identify strengths and successes. major revisions will be needed. The best source of revision ideas may be the instructor’s own reflection on course strengths and weaknesses. to shorten the instructional development process. Results of the evaluation analysis will provide a "springboard" from which to develop the revision plan. Test revision ideas on small groups of distant learners. In Conclusion While it is possible. there will likely be more confidence in a course that has been significantly revised than in one considered flawless the first time through. such as breaking a large and unwieldy instructional unit into more manageable components. Significant course changes should be field-tested prior to future course use. Distance Education at a Glance 13 . Revision plans typically are a direct result of the evaluation process in tandem with feedback from colleagues and content specialists. it should be done only after considering the needs of the learner. revision should be planned as soon as possible after course completion.
familiar classroom. For example. to formally evaluate student learning. Will identify major gaps in the instructional plan or the need for minor adjustments. teachers pose questions. Formative evaluation: Is an on-going process to be considered at all stages of instruction? Will enable the instructor to improve the course as he/she proceeds. Types of Evaluation Evaluation can be either formative. to determine how much and how well their students are learning. How a course can be improved. and monitor body language and facial expressions. tests. Appropriateness of assignments. To evaluate classroom learning informally.CHAPTER: 4 EVALUATION FOR DISTANCE EDUCATORS Why Evaluate? Effective teachers use a variety of means. Clarity of course content. For example. and facial expressions). Total control over the distance delivery system. listen carefully to student questions and comments. A relatively homogeneous group of students. Facilitates course and content adaptation. If class time is well spent. Informal. and homework. Teaching effectiveness. examinations. often implicit evaluations permit the teacher to make adjustments in their teaching: to slow down or review material in response to questions. For these reasons. or a combination of both.g. For example. instructors no longer have: A traditional. term papers. When teaching at a distance. comments. but to use a more informal approach in collecting data to determine: Student comfort with the method used to deliver the distant instruction. distance educators may find it useful to not only formally evaluate students through testing and homework. or to move on when student performance exceeds expectations. some formal and others informal. and misunderstandings. Face-to-face feedback during class (e. teachers also use a variety of techniques. body language. educators must address a different teaching challenge than when teaching in a traditional classroom. lab reports. Distance Education at a Glance 14 . Convenient opportunities to talk to students individually. summative. These formal evaluation techniques help the instructor to evaluate student achievement and assign grades. students' questions. confusion. most teachers use quizzes.
Follow with probes (e.Call students often.provide each student with prestamped and preaddressed postcards. what would you do differently? Student background information: age.Can be a very effective way for instructors and students to communicate.g. Ask them open ended questions (e. Can be a baseline of information for designing a new plan. On a weekly basis. a valuable skill. What would you recommend to a friend planning to take this course? What did you think would be covered in this course but was not? Would you recommend this course to a friend? Why or why not? Evaluation Methods Within the context of formative and summative evaluation. students become familiar with the use of electronic mail. "What snags did you run into on the second writing assignment?") to let students voice their concerns..Some strategies that educators can use to collect formative data from their distant students include: Post cards . Telephone . data may be collected through quantitative and qualitative methods. while the instructor is eliciting information about classroom learning. frequently using a scale. If you were teaching the course. Some questions that educators may want to ask students when collecting summative data include: List five weaknesses of the course.. will you need more information sources?"). level in school. Another plus. check list. Can be a springboard in developing a revision plan. Distance Education at a Glance 15 . Will not help current students since it is conducted upon course completion. number of distance delivered courses taken prior to this one. Limits students to responding to the categories made available to them. Electronic mail . Quantitative evaluation: Involves asking questions which can be statistically tabulated and analyzed. or course. Set phone-in office hours but be sure to welcome calls at other times. Needs a large student sample for relevant statistical analyses. or yes/no responses. have students use the postcards to share their concerns or respond to questions during the last three to five minutes of class. "Then. List three (or five) strengths of the course. Summative evaluation: Assesses overall effectiveness of the finished product or course.g. program.
Therefore. and often results in an overreliance on summative evaluation. Is a more flexible and dynamic method.with respondents asked to identify course strengths and weaknesses. etc. Statistical analysis often results in an illusion of precision that may be far from reality.. explore attitudes towards distance delivery methods. fresh insights and unique perspectives falling outside the provided response categories go unreported. Is more difficult to tabulate into neat categories. Distance Education at a Glance 16 . and seeking insights regarding the process of distance education. Participant observation -.. Is not limited to pre-conceived topic of inquiry. By definition and design. The cumbersome and often tedious nature of quantitative data collection can discourage formative evaluation.g. Qualitative evaluation: Is typically more subjective. an audio-conference. they do have some significant drawbacks: Many distance education courses have relatively small class sizes with students from various backgrounds.with the distance educator observing a course (e. suggest changes. Can use: Open ended questioning -. A low rate of return often suggests that only those feeling very positively or negatively about the course responded to the evaluation. stratified populations typically defy relevant statistical analysis. interactive television class. Will be less affected by typical small class size. Allows for student output of topics. Quantitative surveys typically result in a rate of return of under 50 percent.) without actually participating or asking questions.with the distance educator observing group dynamics and behavior while participating in the class as an observer. Involves gathering a wider range and depth of information. personalized approaches are not feasible.with the evaluator using predetermined criteria to review course documents including the syllabus and instructional materials as well as student assignments and course-related planning documents. forced choice surveys offer respondents a limited number of possible response options. These small. etc. Non-participant observation -. Content analysis -. asking occasional questions. However.Quantitative methods may be most useful for gathering information on large numbers of respondents for whom more in-depth.
Evaluation Tips Check out and adapt already published questionnaires. Tests . class participation. assignments submitted. Student achievement .attendance. preparation.facilitator. positive aspects.relevancy. This gives students built-in thinking time. What to Evaluate Consider the following areas: Use of technology . Interviews -. degree of difficulty and time required. This can be accomplished by having all questionnaires sent to a neutral site where they would be removed from their envelopes and forwarded to the instructor without a postmark. Quantity and quality of interaction with other students and with instructor.adequacy. Course content . openness to student views. discussion. feedback. assure anonymity. timeliness of feedback. enthusiasm. attitude toward technology. there’s no need to re-invent the wheel. organization. Make use of follow-up probes: Alternate between instruction and interaction.go ahead and ask for suggestions for improvement before asking for what is good.frequency. technology.effectiveness of lecture. Withhold judgmental responses. Establish rapport by being interested and supportive. Distance Education at a Glance 17 . Class atmosphere . question and answer.usefulness. adequate body of knowledge. Support services . difficulty. relevancy. appropriateness.familiarity. On summative evaluation. library services. concerns. Place open ended questions after quick answer questions. effectiveness. problems. This will help convey sincerity for seeking improvements. sufficient review. Class formats . quality of questions or problems raised in class. Instructor . Student attitude . student involvement. timeliness. change if necessary. organization.contribution as discussion leader. instructor availability. Sequence your questions for best effect . encouragement given students to express themselves.with a facilitator or specially trained individual collecting evaluative data through one-on-one and small-group interviews with students. Assignments . readability level of print materials. Draft and revise questions.conduciveness to student learning.
Distance Education at a Glance 18 .< Use evaluation as a method for understanding teaching and learning. It is important not only to know what is not working. but also what is working. Adapt to the student in degree of formality and pace of communication. Try to get both positive and negative feedback.
often requiring relatively sophisticated production facilities and equipment. or satellite. It is very effective for introducing. Advantages of Instructional Television Since most people have watched television. In contrast. It can be used effectively as a motivational tool. Selected unit . Time and space can be collapsed. two-way television with two-way audio allows all students to view and interact with the teacher. and staffing. summarizing. cable. Full course . Passive ITV typically involves preproduced programs which are distributed by video cassette or by video-based technologies such as broadcast. Video production is time consuming and can be technically demanding. so that events can be captured and relayed as they happen. either with a live instructor or a participating student site. providing a lesson introduction. overview. Sites choosing to interactively participate in an ITV program may require specialized equipment. Distance Education at a Glance 19 . a foreign country.Programs from one or more ITV series may be integrated into a full semester course typically in conjunction with instructional print materials. Motion and visuals can be combined in a single format so that complex or abstract concepts can be illustrated through visual simulation. or through the lens of a microscope).CHAPTER: 5 INSTRUCTIONAL TELEVISION Why Instructional Television? Instructional television (ITV) is an effective distance education delivery system that can be integrated into the curriculum at three basic levels: Single lesson . and reviewing concepts. cameras at remote sites allow the teacher to view all participating students. At the same time. facilities. ITV may be either passive or interactive. It is also possible to configure the system so that all student sites may view one another. or summary. Instructional television is an effective way to take students to new environments (the moon. interactive ITV provides opportunities for viewer interaction. For example. Limitations of Instructional Television Broadcast quality ITV is expensive to create. the medium is familiar. The old cliche "a picture is worth a thousand words" rings true.A series of programs providing the content foundation for a learning unit in the course curriculum.Programs address one specific topic or concept.
Conducting ITV Lessons Because teachers and students are physically separated by a distance. tables. try employing the Distance Education at a Glance 20 . As a result. Diagrams -. Analyze change over time using animation. Reveal the spatial. completed ITV programs often look amateurish. Taking advantage of the visual imagery of ITV can counter an over-reliance on lecturing. and charts -. its instructional effectiveness can be limited. Transport learners to places or situations not otherwise in their experience. without interaction. three-dimensional qualities of an object or structure. slow motion. Demonstrate skills that learners are expected to emulate. such as film of historical events or naturally occurring situations.to show what things look like.to show spatial relationships. Graphs. Designing Instruction for ITV In designing instruction for ITV. Once completed. the challenge is to think in visual terms. It may be helpful to visually represent: Outlines or lists Key points Complex material in a step-by-step fashion Relationships Information that needs to be summarized for retention and recall Make use of: Pictures -. Present primary source materials for analysis. they can be ineffective in serving students with special needs. and structure of content material. Carefully planning ways to show instead of tell may improve the instructional effectiveness of ITV. Most prepackaged ITV courses use a mass media approach to instruction aimed at the average student.to illustrate conceptual relationships. organizations. or time lapse photography. the teacher's challenge is to psychologically reduce the gap not only through the appropriate use of technology but also through the use of effective teaching practices. Unless professionally produced. Take advantage of video's ability to show movement to: Demonstrate the operation of tools and equipment. Once basic teaching methods are considered. Conduct experiments in which the processes must be observed. When used passively. Good teaching ensures that a rapport develops between students and teacher. ITV programs can be difficult to revise and update. Maps -.to summarize information.
Consider the use of study questions to assist in focusing discussions. image. Consider team teaching to maintain viewer interest with a change of voice. and presentation style. Engage students by using humor. Practice in front of a live camera prior to class. If using an overhead camera to electronically project visuals. enthusiasm is contagious. Do the same for the guest speakers.keep students on track. Present content in five to ten minute blocks interspersed with discussion. Alternate between instruction and interaction. Distance Education at a Glance 21 . have a colleague. Set the Stage Remember that it takes longer to deliver instruction at a distance than in a traditional face-to-face setting. indicate key points to look for. 2. audio equipment. and answer any questions regarding the technical equipment being used. Do not digress -. In-class technicians are trained to be as unobtrusive as possible. It is best to have a trial run with technical staff so that all participants know the role they are expected to play. or a media technician view your presentation and on-camera presence. and praising student contributions. Do not read material. Students should have the necessary background materials to make the best use of televised lessons. Prepare viewers for new terminology to be used in the program. Keep lecture sessions simple and clear. body movements. this will fade as the class progresses. To help focus viewing. what is expected of them. television monitors. Maintain a moderate speaking pace. a few target students. such as cameras. asking questions. Inform students if there will be camera operators or technicians in the classroom. etc. So is boredom. Remember. give students necessary background information prior to the class. and eye contact with the camera to enhance verbal communication. Organize all class materials and visuals before the start of the class. involving students. If using guest speakers. If possible. Although the students may be initially curious. tone of voice. understand its operation and limitations prior to the start of the class.. Maintain energy and dynamism to attract and hold the distant learners' attention. and the general background of participating students.following three step strategy for conducting ITV lessons: 1. offering suggestions for improvement. During the ITV Session Vary facial expressions. Plan lessons accordingly. Let them know the specific purpose of their session.
Have the questions appear in writing on the screen so students see and hear the questions. style. These activities might include quizzes. 3. The instructor does not always have to answer questions. Designating students at distant sites to lead discussions or survey the room for questions. Seek student feedback on the strengths and weaknesses of the instructional materials and the teaching strategies being used. and delivery methods. Review the concepts discussed in the program and clarify any misunderstandings by asking focused questions. either with technical staff. Vary the center of focus for activities from the on-camera presenter to a receive site group or individual. Following the Session Review the taped recordings of the presentation. Clearly defining discussion topics or questions and then allowing time for students to prepare responses. a colleague. Functioning as content facilitator not just content provider. Assigning discussion questions in advance of the television session will help students prepare for the interaction. Motivate peer learning and support by encouraging students to work together both in and out of class. Take notes for improving presentation. Initiating an interaction within the first twenty minutes will get students motivated to participate in learning rather than lulling them into just watching. worksheets. reading. Encouraging student-to-student interaction by asking an in-class student or a student from a distant site to respond to questions. and talking. and experiments. Incorporate timely breaks as a respite from the television monitor. writing. Integrate activities to reinforce the content presentation.watching. Include different kinds of student involvement-. Be open to new ideas and delivery techniques for improving instructional effectiveness. Distance Education at a Glance 22 . or by yourself. role-playing. Make sure opportunities are included to enhance student interaction by: Planning a block of time for interaction and then letting students know in advance that interaction is anticipated.
simulations and games. for example. computer conferencing. computers can effectively link various technologies.HyperCard. The instruction need not be delivered via computer. These developments have made the computer a dynamic force in distance education. and problem-solving.uses the computer’s branching. Computers are a multimedia tool. computers individualize learning. and flexible computing tools have gained the attention of distance educators in recent years. while related costs drop. audio. Computers are interactive. and retrieval capabilities to organize instruction and track student records and progress. and electronic bulletin boards. educators have witnessed the rapid development of computer networks. and computer technologies into a single. Computer Managed Instruction (CMI) . With integrated graphic. although often CAI (the instructional component) is combined with CMI. By understanding their present needs Distance Education at a Glance 23 . sophisticated. and learning environments. lessons. There are several CAI modes. Interactive video and CD-ROM technologies can be incorporated into computer-based instructional units. dramatic improvements in the processing power of personal computers. easily accessible delivery system. Examples include electronic mail. providing a new and interactive means of overcoming time and distance to reach learners.describes computer applications that facilitate communication. while giving immediate reinforcement and feedback. hypermedia. Microcomputer systems incorporating various software packages are extremely flexible and maximize learner control. and a stilldeveloping generation of powerful. The goal of computer-based multimedia is to integrate various voice. Computer-Based Multimedia. Computer Mediated Communication (CMC). Innovations are constantly emerging.uses the computer as a selfcontained teaching machine to present discrete lessons to achieve specific but limited educational objectives. Computer applications for distance education fall into four broad categories: Computer Assisted Instruction (CAI) . tutorial. including: drill and practice. Advantages of Computers Computers can facilitate self-paced learning. and video capabilities. and striking advances in magnetic storage technology. print.CHAPTER: 6 COMPUTERS IN DISTANCE EDUCATION Why Computers in Distance Education? In recent years. storage. video. In the CAI mode. Computer technology is rapidly advancing.
e-mail is used to exchange messages or other information with people. Instead of being delivered by the postal service to a postal address. The technology is changing rapidly. wherever they might be. e-mail is delivered by Internet software through a computer network to a computer address. universities. It encompasses 1. and national networks link resources and individuals. and ranging in distribution from the whole world to single institutions. and future technical requirements. and private citizens connect to the Internet either through affiliations with regional not-for-profit networks or by subscribing to information services provided by for-profit companies. more possibilities are opened for distance educators to overcome time and distance to reach students. The Internet and Distance Education The Internet is the largest. the cost-conscious educator can effectively navigate the volatile computer hardware and software market.3 million computers with Internet addresses that are used by up to 30 million people in more than fifty countries. Local. it is still costly to develop instructional networks and purchase the system software to run them. While computers have been widely used since the 1960's. USENET is a collection of thousands of topically organized newsgroups. Students must be highly motivated and proficient in computer operation before they can successfully function in a computer-based distance learning environment. LISTSERV also provides discussion forums on a variety of topics broken out by topic or area of special interest. schools. Widespread computer illiteracy still exists. Computer technology evolves so quickly that the distant educator focused solely on innovation "not meeting tangible needs" will constantly change equipment in an effort to keep pace with the "latest" technical advancements. there are many who do not have access to computers or computer networks. Two common public bulletin boards on the Internet are USENET and LISTSERV. distance educators and their students can use: Electronic mail (e-mail) .Many bulletin boards can be accessed through the Internet. regional.Like postal mail. Although individual computers are relatively inexpensive and the computer hardware and software market is very competitive. many institutions now offer complete undergraduate and graduate programs relying almost exclusively on computer-based resources. As more and more colleges. With access to the Internet. covering everything from supercomputer design to bungee cord jumping. Bulletin boards . companies. Limitations of Computers Computer networks are costly to develop. Computers increase access. most powerful computer network in the world. In fact. Distance Education at a Glance 24 .
video) available on the Internet. global climate change. Distance Education at a Glance 25 . Feedback from the instructor can be received more quickly than messages sent by mail. 1994). and researchers by encouraging them to join a bulletin board(s) on topic(s) related to the class. individual students can post their comments or questions to the class. Engaging students in dialogue with other students. The instructor can also provide links to information on the WWW that would be useful to students in the class (e. Distant students often work in isolation without the assistance and support of fellow students. World-Wide Web (WWW) -The WWW is an exciting and innovative frontend to the Internet. Instructional Possibilities of the Internet Distance educators can use the Internet and WWW to help students gain a basic understanding of how to navigate and take full advantage of the networked world into which they will be graduating.wide-area hypermedia information retrieval initiative aiming to give universal access to a large universe of documents" (Hughes..g. Some instructional possibilities of the Internet include: Using e-mail for informal one-to-one correspondence. or space missions). Students can read messages at their convenience and easily store them for later reference. The home page can cover information about the class including the syllabus. such as Mosaic and Netscape. and answers to assignments/tests. faculty. Every organization and even every individual user of the WWW can create a home page that contains whatever information they want to present. With a class computer conference. Setting up a class bulletin board can encourage student-to-student interaction. Establishing a classroom bulletin board. sound. The hypertext capabilities of the WWW facilitate linking of information within your own home page and with all other home pages on the WWW. Other links could access library catalogs or each student's individual home page. real research data on agricultural markets... data. and the instructor's biography. Developing a classroom home page. The WWW provides Internet users with a uniform and convenient means of accessing the wide variety of resources (pictures. exercises. Officially WWW is described as a ". The conference can also be used to post all modifications to the class schedule or curriculum. facilitate navigation and use of the WWW. assignments/tests. text. and every other individual is free to respond. Popular software interfaces. The central organizing feature of the WWW is the "home page". literature references.
and the WWW early in the course so they overcome inhibitions. Also. Becoming familiar with the resources available on the Internet and the most effective ways to use them will be part of the instructional challenge. electronic bulletin boards.Teaching Considerations When incorporating the Internet into a distance delivered course. It might be appropriate to delay response to a query in a classroom conference in order to allow students to respond to the issue and to each other. Distance Education at a Glance 26 . convenient access to a computer at home or work may influence student success. Setting up a specific classroom conference for ongoing discussions of specific hardware and software problems may help students to work through these problems on their own. and appropriate online communication skills. Specifying a minimum number of e-mail communications per week will encourage active participation. remember that: All students in a course must have Internet and WWW access to ensure equal opportunities for computer interaction and feedback. Computer conferences can foster student-to-student interaction. classroom conferences. Students may face the concurrent challenges of learning basic computer skills. Encourage students to use e-mail. Prompt responses might not always be appropriate. new software. Prompt response generally increases student motivation and performance. Some students might hesitate to contribute to computer conferences or to send e-mail because of a lack of familiarity with the proper protocols. A number of helpful guides to the Internet and WWW are available. To ensure that this interaction is sustained. work towards a facilitative role. Using e-mail can help the instructor provide feedback more quickly than surface mail or telephone. Trouble-shooting student computer problems will probably become a part of normal instructional responsibilities.
The first distance-delivered courses were offered by correspondence study. In addition. The portability of print is especially important for rural learners with limited access to advanced technology. the print medium is the most transparent instructional medium of all. the developer’s primary focus remains on content concerns. Cost-effective. Easily edited and revised. In comparison to technically sophisticated electronic software. offers a vicarious view of reality. with print materials sent and returned to students by mail. Instructionally transparent. while focusing on areas demanding additional attention. No instructional tool is less expensive to produce than print. Reading is second nature to most students. not the technical requirements of the delivery system. Print. and specially designed electronic classrooms. Advantages of Print Spontaneous. they are easily able to focus on the content. print materials can be used any time and any place without the aid of supplemental resources such as electricity. print is both easy and inexpensive to edit and revise. without becoming mesmerized or frustrated by the process of reading itself. not compete with. the student rapidly moves through redundant sections. The medium of delivery should enhance. Print materials are typically learnercontrolled. When instructional print materials are created. the content for the learner’s attention. As a result. While technological developments have added to the repertoire of tools available to the distance educator. As a result. print continues to be a significant component of all distance education programs. Despite the use of excellent sequential illustrations or photos. for example. it is impossible to adequately recreate motion in print. by its reliance on the written word. Given adequate light. viewing screen. Numerous studies have shown that higher learner motivation is required to successfully complete print-based Distance Education at a Glance 27 .CHAPTER: 7 PRINT IN DISTANCE EDUCATION Why Include Print? Print is the foundation of distance education and the basis from which all other delivery systems have evolved. Time-effective. Passive and self-directed. Limitations of Print Limited view of reality. Print materials can be used in any setting without the need for sophisticated presentation equipment. Easily reviewed and referenced. Easy to use. facilities abound for the inexpensive duplication of these materials. Non-threatening. If the student reads well.
Reading skills must often be improved. They will often include exercises. remediation. Typically. performance expectations. however. and a day-by-day overview of the material to be covered. one or more exercises or case studies to elaborate the points being made. In a distance education context workbooks are often used to provide course content in an interactive manner. related readings and additional resources available to the student. related readings (often by session). Workbooks. By nature. Even with print materials incorporating feedback mechanisms and interactive exercises. A comprehensive and well-planned course syllabus is the foundation of many distance-delivered courses. print materials are passive and self-directed. this is especially critical when the learner and the instructor are not in daily contact. often fail to develop adequate reading skills by age 12. Distance Education at a Glance 28 . A typical format might contain an overview. Study guides. or ‘branching’ loop to recycle students through the instruction as needed. including: Textbooks. Thanks to television. To a certain extent. distance educators use study guides to reinforce points made during class and through the use of other delivery systems. Feedback and interaction. Still. regardless of the delivery system in use. Course syllabus. As in traditionally delivered courses. Dependent on reading skills. courses. Formats of Print Materials Various print formats are available. textbooks are the basis and primary source of content for the majority of distance-delivered courses. there is typically some form of feedback. While textbooks should always be critically reviewed before adoption. it is easy for learners to skip to the answer section. It provides course goals and objectives. grading criteria. instruction suffers. The syllabus must be as complete as possible in order to guide the students through the course in the absence of daily contact with the instructor. Without feedback and interaction. descriptions of assignments. These same children. In addition. most students have developed fairly good viewing skills by age four. the content to be covered. the passive nature of print can be offset by systematic instructional design that seeks to stimulate the passive learner. and a quiz or test (with answer key) for self-assessment. it takes more motivation to read a book or work through a written exercise than it does to watch a television program or participate in an audio-conference with an instructor encouraging student participation and response. Lack of ability in this area cripples the effectiveness of even the most instructionally sound print material and must be overcome if print is to be used effectively.
At first. then temporary ones. o Avoid multiple negatives. o Use personal pronouns. the consequences of the selected alternative are described. organizing and writing at the same time. first the general. His tips for writing instructional materials include: o Use short sentences. Print materials are often too wordy because the author is planning. organize content based on the identified goals and objectives. o Avoid jargon. o Avoid unnecessary and difficult words. Many case studies present a content-based scenario. focus on systematically and creatively ordering the flow of topics. pose alternative solutions. o Avoid excess information in a sentence. Distance Education at a Glance 29 . o List conditions separately. o Put sentences and paragraphs into a logical sequence: first things that affect many. o Use familiar examples. Instead. o Avoid cultural and gender stereotyping. In fact. the challenge is to design instruction to maximize the amount of interaction in distance education print materials. Designing Instruction for Print Because print is largely a one-way communication medium. Misanchuk (1994) suggests that distance educators write instructional materials with language more like that used for speaking than for writing journal articles or books. o Use point form. not polishing a finished product. case studies are an extremely effective instructional tool. case studies are often designed around the limitations of print and intended to spark the students’ imaginations as they place themselves in the particular case under consideration. create an outline of the material to be covered. o Use the active voice. first permanent provisions. o Keep equivalent items parallel. Focusing on content organization before developing content. o Avoid compound sentences. then things that affect few. There. use technical terms only when necessary. Case studies. The end result will be a well-organized content outline from which the written content will easily flow. then the specific. and then branch students to different sections of the text. Consider: Writing style. o Write as you would speak. If written imaginatively. They raise questions. Prior to content development.
Using advance organizers. ages and experiences of the students. Be sure. The course introduction can include biographical background information about the instructor. and grading. Developing a course introduction. teachers spontaneously provide examples and analogies to illustrate a point that students are having difficulty understanding. Use adequate headings and subheadings to visually guide the reader through the material. course goals and aims. They should be of a more general and abstract character than the learning matter that follows and help the learner to relate different parts and concepts of teaching material to each other. Place the most general and comprehensive ideas at the beginning of a lesson and progress to more structured and detailed information. a listing of any textbooks or ancillary learning materials that will be needed. Learner anxiety with the unknown can be reduced through consistency in instructional presentation. Develop an effective format and organizational scheme and stick with it. Misanchuk (1994) suggests developing a written course introduction that will be the very first thing a distant student sees. Questions in print material can stimulate the learner to be more active and to deal more intensively with the learning matter. Distance Education at a Glance 30 . Because distant students and their teachers may not have this type of interaction. In a traditional classroom. A glossary summarizes all the new. Using examples and analogies. Including questions. include lots of good examples and analogies in print-based materials. and information about assignments. Use questions that aim at understanding rather than merely reproduction and memorization of facts. Adding a table of contents. a course overview. A detailed table of contents can help the learner to quickly refer to the appropriate section. Staying with a consistent format. Incorporating a glossary of terms. that these examples address the various cultural groups. however. examinations. Advance organizers are a means to connect new material with a learner’s prior knowledge and cognitive structure. It may be helpful to delineate glossary entries in the instructional material by putting them in boldface type. often technical terminology encountered in a document.
if necessary. He views memorization of facts and details as a ‘surface approach’ to learning and summarizes it as follows: Surface approach: o Focus on the "signs" (e. have jobs. spare time. and studies. Distant students have a variety of reasons for taking courses. they end up with a poor understanding of course material. In distance education settings. Under the best of circumstances. the text or instruction itself). and the ability to analyze and apply the information being taught. the learner is usually isolated. this challenging task requires motivation.. Many take courses to broaden their education and are not really interested in completing a degree. planning. Until the teacher and students become comfortable with the technical delivery system.g. In a distance education setting. 1993): Many distance-education students are older. They must coordinate the different areas of their lives which influence each other & their families. the process of student learning is more complex for several reasons (Schuemer. or familiarity with the technology being used for delivery of the distance-education course. Some students are interested in obtaining a degree to qualify for a better job. Distant Students' Development as Learners Beginning students may have some difficulty determining what the demands of a course of academic study actually are because they do not have the support of an immediate peer group. technology is typically the conduit through which information and communication flow. Without face-to-face contact distant students may feel ill at ease with their teacher as an "individual" and uncomfortable with their learning situation. communication will be inhibited. In distance education. give attention to actual needs and difficulties that crop up during study. Distance Education at a Glance 31 . jobs. The student also lacks the immediate support of a teacher who is present and able to motivate and. Distant students and their teachers often have little in common in terms of background and day-to-day experiences and therefore. and families. o Focus on discrete elements. The motivational factors arising from the contact or competition with other students is absent. Morgan (1991) suggests that distant students who are not confident about their learning tend to concentrate on memorizing facts and details in order to complete assignments and write exams. They may be unsure of themselves and their learning.CHAPTER: 8 STRATEGIES FOR LEARNING AT A DISTANCE Profile of the Distant Student The primary role of the student is to learn. As a result. it takes longer for student-teacher rapport to develop. ready access to the instructor.
They also need to understand their learning goals and objectives. and Mackneson (1993) suggest that adult students and their instructors must face and overcome a number of challenges before learning takes place including: becoming and staying responsible for themselves. Organize and structure content. new information from old. and dealing with content. "owning" their strengths. Morgan (1991) summarizes this approach as follows: o o o Deep Approach: o o o o o o Focus on what is "signified" (e. Students need to recognize their strengths and limitations. o External emphasis focusing on the demands of assignments and exams leading to a knowledge that is cut-off from everyday reality. Distant students need to become more selective and focused in their learning in order to master new information. encouraging discussion among students. "Owning one’s strengths. The instructor can help distant students to explore their strengths/limitations and their learning Distance Education at a Glance 32 . desires. skills. and needs. maintaining and increasing self-esteem. skills.Memorize information and procedures for tests. Unreflectively associate concepts and facts. clarifying what is learned.. Improving Distant Learning The shift from ‘surface’ to ‘deep’ learning is not automatic. and by encouraging and reinforcing effective student study habits. Relate and distinguish evidence and argument. Relate and distinguish new ideas and previous knowledge. High motivation is required to complete distant courses because the day-to-day contact with teachers and other students is typically lacking. The focus of their learning needs to shift them from a ‘surface approach’ to a ‘deep approach’.g. Keane. Instructors can help motivate distant students by providing consistent and timely feedback. being well prepared for class. relating to others. needs". Fail to distinguish principles from evidence. Internal emphasis focusing on how instructional material relates to everyday reality. o Treat assignments as something imposed by the instructor. desires. redefining what legitimate knowledge is. Relate concepts to everyday experience. Brundage. the instructor’s arguments). These challenges are considered in relation to distance education: "Becoming and staying responsible for themselves".
Often their involvement in distance education is unknown to those they work with and ignored by family members. and concerns in a personalized and pleasant manner. Examinations. The instructor can maintain student self-esteem by providing timely feedback. For example. phone. Brundage. If the instructor takes a facilitative rather than authoritative Distance Education at a Glance 33 . assignments. papers. appropriate interactive technology such as Email should be provided to encourage small group and individual communication. Students often learn most effectively when they have the opportunity to interact with other students. Interaction among students typically leads to group problem solving. less formal methods of evaluation will also help the students and teacher to understand learning. "Relating to others". They are balancing many responsibilities including employment and raising children. Providing opportunities for students to share their personal learning goals and objectives for a course helps to make learning more meaningful and increases motivation. Distant students may be afraid of their ability to do well in a course.goals/objectives by assuming a facilitative role in the learning process. Assignments in which students work together and then report back or present to the class as a whole. When students are unable to meet together. 1993). or computer. "Clarifying what is learned". However. "Redefining what legitimate knowledge is". using appropriate technology such as fax. periodically during the course the instructor can ask students to write a brief reflection on what they have learned and then provide an opportunity for them to share their insights with other class members. Informative comments that elaborate on the individual student’s performance and suggest areas for improvement are especially helpful. Distant students need to reflect on what they are learning. Keane. It is critical for teachers to respond to students’ questions. They need to examine the existing knowledge frameworks in their heads and how these are being added to or changed by incoming information. and class presentations provide opportunities for student and teacher to evaluate learning. Ensure clear directions and realistic goals for group assignments (Burge. encourage student-tostudent interaction. Student performance is enhanced if learners set aside time for their instructional activities and if they receive family support in their academic endeavors. and Mackneson (1993) suggest that adult learners may find it difficult to accept that their own experience and reflections are legitimate knowledge. "Maintaining and increasing self-esteem".
experiences. instructors must discover examples that are relevant to their distant students. and insights. Student learning is enhanced when content is related to examples. Burge (1993) suggests having learners use firstperson language to help them claim ownership of personal values. For distance learning to be effective. This is the challenge and the opportunity provided by distance education. actively interacting with class members. Encourage students to find or develop examples that are relevant to them or their community. maintaining self-esteem. "Dealing with content". promoting reflection on experience. and evaluating what is being learned. Instructors tend to teach using examples that were used when they received their training. if the students and their instructor share responsibility for developing learning goals and objectives.role. however. relating new information to examples that make sense to learners. students will see their own experience as valuable and important to their further learning. However. In Conclusion Teaching and learning at a distance is demanding. learning will be more meaningful and ‘deeper’ for distant students. Distance Education at a Glance 34 .
1987). educational researchers have examined the purposes and situations for which distance education is best suited. Distance education students: Are voluntarily seeking further education. Have post-secondary education goals with expectations for higher grades (Schlosser & Anderson. Frequently asked questions cluster in five areas: Is technology-assisted. Why are Students Successful? Research suggests distant students bring basic characteristics to their learning experience which influences their success in coursework. Traditional Education Research indicates that the instructional format itself (e. 1994). The organization and reflection needed to effectively teach at a distance often improves an instructor's traditional teaching. Distance Education at a Glance 35 . Are highly motivated and self-disciplined.CHAPTER: 9 DISTANCE EDUCATION: RESEARCH Common Research Questions Because distance education is perceived as an increasingly effective method of instruction. distant teaching as effective as traditional face-toface teaching? What factors determine the most effective mix of technology in a given distant teaching situation? What are the characteristics of effective distant students and teachers? How important is teacher-student and student-student interaction in the distance education process and in what form(s) can this interaction most effectively take place? What cost factors should be considered when planning or implementing distance education programs and how are those costs offset by benefits to the learner? Distance vs. 1993). et al.g. "live" instructor) has little effect on student achievement as long as the delivery technology is appropriate to the content being offered and all participants have access to the same technology. 1991). Are older. 1993). interactive video vs.. Future research should focus on the critical factor in determining student achievement: the design of instruction itself (Whittington. videotape vs.. Conventional instruction is perceived to be better organized and more clearly presented than distance education (Egan. yet no significant difference in positive attitudes toward course material is apparent between distant and traditional education (Martin & Rainey. Other conclusions drawn from this line of research suggest: Achievement on various tests administered by course instructors tends to be higher for distant as opposed to traditional students (Souder.
repeats questions. Because distance education and its technologies require extensive planning and preparation. However. Learners get more from the courses when the instructor seems comfortable with the technology. Previous completion of a college degree (Bernt & Bugbee.. 1991). exams. et al. These factors include: Willingness to initiate calls to instructors for assistance.Studies also conclude that similar factors determine successful learning whether the students are distant or traditional. using tools such as interactive study guides. maintains eye contact with the camera. and the use of visuals and graphics as part of the syllabus and presentation outlines contribute to student understanding of the course. This support typically takes the form of some combination of student-instructor and student-student interaction. 1991). distance educators must consider the following in order to improve their effectiveness (Schlosser & Anderson." (Wilkes & Burnham. How Important is Interaction? Many distant learners require support and guidance to make the most of their distance learning experiences (Threlkeld & Brzoska. and possesses a sense of humor (Egan. et al. Learners benefit significantly from a well-designed syllabus and presentation outlines (Egan. and projects (Egan. Why is Instruction Successful? Good distance teaching practices are fundamentally identical to good traditional teaching practices and "those factors which influence good instruction may be generally universal across different environments and populations. Distance learners value instructors who are well prepared and organized (Egan. Learners benefit significantly from their involvement in small learning groups. 1993). 1991).. Research findings on the need for interaction have produced some important guidelines for instructors organizing courses for distant students: Learners value timely feedback regarding course assignments. Employment in a field where career advances can be readily "achieved through academic upgrading in a distance education environment" (Ross & Powell. Structured note taking. 1990). et al. Possessing a more serious attitude toward the courses. These groups provide support and encouragement along with Distance Education at a Glance 36 . 1994): Extensive pre-planning and formative evaluation is necessary. Teachers must be properly trained both in the use of equipment and in those techniques proven effective in the distance education environment. these visuals must be tailored to the characteristics of the medium and to the characteristics of the students. 1991).. 1991). Teachers cannot "wing it". 1994).. et al.
et al. Perhaps the question institutions must answer is whether it is part of their mission as educators to offer programs to those who might not be reached without distance education. Distance Education at a Glance 37 . Transmission . Research also suggests that as programs become more efficient. and telephones can also provide learner support & interaction opportunities.to staff all functions previously described.. Utilization of on-site facilitators who develop a personal rapport with students and who are familiar with equipment and other course materials increases student satisfaction with courses (Burge & Howard. More structured contact might be utilized as a motivational tool (Coldeway. Benefits When establishing a distance education program. 1980). the groups foster the feeling that if help is needed it is readily available. Production .the foundational network and telecommunications infrastructure located at the originating and receiving campuses. and overhead costs. Students may complete their course of study without suffering the loss of salary due to relocation. Learners are more motivated if they are in frequent contact with the instructor. videotape players. local support costs. 1994). satellite.the on-going expense of leasing transmission access (e.hardware (e.miscellaneous expenses needed to ensure the system works successfully including administrative costs. Benefits of distance education courses to the learner include (Ludlow. cameras) and software (e. extra feedback on course assignments. T-1. registration. 1994): Accessible training to students in rural areas. The use of technologies such as fax machines. program costs should decrease (Ludlow. Personnel . Most importantly. facilities. The primary benefit to educational institutions through distance education may be the increased number of non-traditional students they are able to attract and serve. Although the costs of offering distance education courses may be high. Infrastructure . Cost vs. one of the first things considered is the cost of the system..g. 1990). 1994): Technology . Students are exposed to the expertise of the most qualified faculty. advising/counseling. Several cost components factor into the design of a distance education system (Threlkeld & Brzoska.. there are high costs associated with offering conventional courses. microwave).g. computers. Support ..technological and personnel support required to develop and adapt teaching materials.g. Maintenance .repairing and updating equipment. computer programs).
Multi-point Distance Education at a Glance 38 . Point-to-Multipoint Some systems are also capable of simultaneously connecting more than two sites through the use of a multi-point control unit. These high speed lines are very effective for videoconferencing. The video compression process decreases the amount of data transmitted over the lines by transmitting only the changes in the picture. the cost effectiveness of IV systems increases with use. A modem takes digital data and transmits it over regular phone lines. various forms of instructional technology can be incorporated into IV. Other types of equipment. such as television monitors. The Technology of IV Most IV systems utilize compressed digital video for the transmission of motion images over data networks such as high capacity Integrated Services Digital Networks (ISDN). It may be easier to think of the codec as an extremely sophisticated modem. video compression also reduces the transmission cost. In addition. microphones. 1995). By minimizing the bandwidth required to transmit the images. and transmits the signals over digital phone lines (Woodruff and Mosby. The codec takes analog signals. 1995). This system can be integrated into the distance education program with minimal adaptation to the curriculum and course and is designed to support two-way video and audio communication between multiple locations. not usage. and computers (Reed and Woodruff. are needed to make IV successful. cameras.CHAPTER: 10 INTERACTIVE VIDEOCONFERENCING IN DISTANCE EDUCATION Why Interactive Videoconferencing? Interactive Videoconferencing (IV) is an effective tool that may be used in distance education settings. An IV system can also share a T-1 circuit with other digital data uses such as Internet transmissions or file transfers. compresses and digitizes them. enabling the transmission of multiple simultaneous videoconferences over the same T-1 circuit. including video cassette recorders/players. Interactive videoconferences are often transmitted on dedicated T-1 phone lines. The core of IV is the codec (coder/decoder). 1996). The fixed monthly charge is usually based on distance. This is the electronic device that transmits and receives the video signals that the class members will see on their television monitors (Galbreath. Interactive videoconferencing systems can operate at different data rates. at various fractions of T-1 capacity. but they are typically leased circuits with an expensive monthly cost. Point-to-point Interactive videoconferencing is commonly used to connect two locations using sophisticated computer technology. or MCU. Therefore.
this ‘universal standard’ compromises resolution and quality to a certain degree.conferencing can be effective although the scheduling. Limitations of Interactive Video As with any technology. are not properly prepared. Provides additional access to students at remote sites. However. 1995). 1996). technical. Advantages of Interactive Video Interactive video can be effective because it: Allows ‘real time’ visual contact between students and the instructor or among students at different sites. the cost of the telephone line usage may be prohibitive since the cost of the call would be multiplied by the number of lines utilized in the conference. and videos may be incorporated at all sites. 1995). interactive video has its limitations: The initial cost of the equipment and leasing the lines to transmit conferences may be prohibitive. although protocols have been established to allow communication among brand names. like handwritten or copied materials. Blackboards. Supports the use of diverse media (Reed and Woodruff. If visuals. students not located with the instructor may remain uninvolved in the course. 1995). Distance Education at a Glance 39 . Simultaneously accessing multiple lines may be difficult in small areas. Unless a strong effort is made by the instructor. and logistical dimensions of MCU conferences can be imposing. students may have a difficult time reading them. the students may observe ‘ghost images’ when rapid movement occurs in ‘real time’ (Reed and Woodruff. Dial Out Capability A relatively new ‘dial out’ feature. If the ‘pipe’ that carries the transmission among sites is not large enough. Can provide access to at-risk or special needs students (Woodruff and Mosby. In addition. Enables connection with experts in other geographical locations (Reed and Woodruff. Companies which produce codecs have each developed unique methods of compression which are incompatible. allows the use of multiple telephone lines to connect two or more sites in the same conference. handwritten documents.
instructors should change instruction methods every 10-15 minutes. class members may observe an audio ‘echo’ effect (Reed and Wooduff. be sure that they will fit on the television monitor (Reed and Woodruff. They are most effective for individual and small group use (Woodruff and Mosby. 1995). and an interface that allows all participants to be seen on the monitors. A variety of formatting will also assist in maintaining student interest and attention. Use small group activities. Classroom videoconferencing. expecting the course to be entertaining. codecs. This type of system usually uses high quality AV components. This will encourage involvement of the distant students. This system is designed primarily for small groups (1-12 participants) at all sites seated around a conference table (Woodruff and Mosby. These systems are less expensive. When preparing class visuals. but offer limited resolution. as well as allowing the students at the origination site to ‘see what it is like’ to have the teacher at another location. keep in mind that small fonts and light colors do not show up well over the monitors. 1995). Distance Education at a Glance 40 . not educational (Reed and Woodruff. 1995). Lessons should incorporate a variety of activities for all students at the various sites. It may also be helpful to have guest speakers at one or more of the distant sites. switch from lecture to question-answer to small group activity on a regular basis. student presentations. Address this attitude through well planned and focused presentations with emphasis on teacher-student interaction. some students may adopt the ‘TV’ attitude. and an occasional break to add variety to the lesson. the instructor should focus attention on all students. The result is audio interference that detracts from the learning environment. As a rule of thumb. 1996). Designing Instruction for Interactive Video When designing instruction to be delivered over IV. not just those at the ‘home’ site. It is often helpful to bring guest lecturers into the classroom. When formatting visuals. In other words. Types of Videoconferencing Systems Small room videoconferencing. This system utilizes a personal computer and videoconferencing software. If the system is not properly configured. Instructional Strategies Establish Class Expectations In the distance education classroom. 1996). Desktop videoconferencing.
Terminating the link with the distant site(s). Using the VCR to broadcast a video for all locations. It would also be helpful to provide the instructor with a quick reference sheet outlining major functions. However. instructors can ascertain the interest and comprehension of the students at both all sites. Use Variety and interaction. 1995). Dialing out to a remote location. unlike regular television. A short session (30 minutes) should be sufficient to give the instructor a ‘hands-on’ overview of the equipment features. Some institutions have technicians who will assist the instructor in setting up or monitoring the videoconference. Encourage Dialogue By asking questions and noting body language. Utilizing a computer to generate and display multimedia presentations. Selecting the appropriate data rate. This kind of attention will make all students feel more comfortable.Reduce Distractions Students should also be forewarned to minimize extraneous noise and activity (Reed and Woodruff. Student training may also be critical since they may be called upon to operate the equipment if the instructor is at another site. The instructor should begin the course by preparing the learners for an active experience. Re-setting ‘echo canceling’ capability. Some of the critical operations that an instructor should be capable of performing are: Turning on the codec and the monitors. Training for Instructors and Students It is important that an instructor be taught how to use all features of the equipment. Shutting down the equipment. and students can make the class much more interesting by being actively involved. or if a guest speaker needs assistance. Switching to and from the computer output. Dialing the distant site(s) to establish a link. Switching to and from the document camera. Distance Education at a Glance 41 . the instructor should still be aware of the process because the technician may not always be available. Adjusting the volume to an acceptable level. Both detract from the quality of the course. is unavailable. Interactive videoconferencing is interactive. Controlling camera focus and field at the origination site and at the distant site(s).
As with other technologies. Distance Education at a Glance 42 .Interactive videoconferencing can be an effective instructional tool for the distance educator. its usefulness is directly related to the instructor understands of its benefits. and utilization strategies. limitations.
Mosaic is an easy to use graphical user interface that permits text. Pages of information on a computer formatted with HTML and accessible to someone with a Web browser. incompatibility problems can result because information is created using different computers and software. sound and video to be hyperlinked. Nodes of information can be linked to other nodes of information in multiple ways. are referred to as "home pages" or "Web pages". The CERN project resulted in an innovative front-end to the Internet. The tool provided a way to link textual information on different computers and created by different scientists. As a result. italic. 1995). and high speed supercomputers around the globe. the National Center for Supercomputing Applications (NCSA) at the University of Illinois pushed the CERN scientists' idea further by creating a software tool called Mosaic. In 1993. Other well-known browsers include Netscape (the first commercial browser developed by some of the programmers involved with the Mosaic project) and Microsoft’s Internet Explorer. Current estimates suggest that over four million computers are part of the Internet (Kochmer. or linked to another piece of text.CHAPTER: 11 DISTANCE EDUCATION AND THE WWW What is the WWW? The Internet is the world’s largest. hypertext permits information to be linked in a web-like structure. Mosaic was the first of the Internet tools that are now referred to as ‘Web browsers’. The object was to overcome issues of incompatibility and utilize a new way of linking made possible by computers. Documents created to be viewed by a browser are formatted using Hypertext Markup Language (HTML). The WWW provides users with a uniform and convenient means of accessing the vast resources of the Internet. a group of scientists at the European Laboratory for Particle Physics (CERN) in Geneva. now referred to as the World-Wide Web (WWW). In 1989. called ‘hypertext’. users can dynamically criss-cross the information web using pieces in the order most convenient to them. The Web browser links to the remote computer just long enough so that the information you need can be sent to your computer for you to view. Switzerland began developing an Internet tool that would link information produced by all of the CERN researchers. Web browsers permit users to connect to the Internet and facilitate accessing information located on another remote computer. Distance Education at a Glance 43 . graphics. Rather than presenting information in a linear or hierarchical fashion. most powerful computer network connecting personal computers. HTML solves incompatibility problems by using standardized tags which indicate such things as whether a piece of text should be plain. bold. sophisticated mainframes. Because a myriad of computers and programs are part of the Internet.
In addition. Don’t get so caught up in learning HTML and developing the home page that the purpose for developing your presence on the WWW is lost. In addition. global climate change. o Utilize information that already has been developed for your course. research data on agricultural markets. Before you start your home page: o Think about your reason for developing a Web presence. Will your home page be a stand alone course or will you be using it in conjunction with other technologies such as video or audio? Sound instructional design principles apply to home pages just as with any other materials prepared for a course. Other links can access library catalogs or each student's individual home page. or space missions). The ability to integrate graphics. The instructor can also provide links to information on the WWW that would be useful to students in the class (e.g.Why Use the WWW for Distance Learning? The WWW and Web browsers have made the Internet a more userfriendly environment. The WWW can be used by the distance educator to build a classroom home page. It is also a relatively simple matter to use the homepage to create forms that students can fill out and that will end up being sent to you as an e-mail message. should avoid the following pitfalls: Rushing in without a master plan. exercises. Spend less time struggling with HTML. Developing a Home Page for Distant Students Distance educators who are ready to develop a web presence. and instructor’s biography. developing amusing graphics or playing with possible background and more time considering the purpose and content of the home page. literature references. Computer software tools such as HotMetal and HotDog mean that anyone familiar with using word processing software can develop a good looking and functional home page. The home page can cover information about the class including the syllabus. If you already have your notes and syllabi in word processed form. the WWW provides an exciting new opportunity for distance teaching and learning.. Reviews of other such computer software tools are available on the WWW and many of them can be downloaded for a free trial. o Become familiar with new software tools for developing home pages. and sound into a single tool means that novice users do not have to struggle with such a steep learning curve. make use of tools such as HotDog to format them for distribution on the WWW. organizations and individuals can create home pages independently and link to other home pages on their own computers or to pages created by others on different computer systems. For educators. text. Distance Education at a Glance 44 . the home page can link students to a discussion list or listserv that set up for student communication.
Consider that while graphics can add appeal to a home page. index internally so that the student can jump to specific information as needed. Your main index should jump to a lot of shorter pages. Properly designed home pages will encourage Distance Education at a Glance 45 . you will need to be sure that all of your distant students have access to computers that have sound and video cards installed in them. Only provide external links to home pages that provide useful related information for your students. Using unnecessarily large graphics or including sound/video clips. Hundreds of home pages have already been developed for courses. o Keeping page lengths short. a large number of Internet users are still accessing the Internet using a 14. plain grey or white backgrounds make text easier to read. If you plan to use sound or video clips. consider the following: o Consulting sites on the WWW which provide information on home page layout and style. Periodically verify whether other home pages to which you are linking still exist. Make sure that you add or change information as necessary. develop a consistent format for each web page. Graphic images which are 20K to 40K are acceptable for people with 14. Some of these home pages allow students to complete an entire course from the WWW and others are developed in conjunction with lectures delivered oncampus or by video or audio. The home page should be an ongoing part of course development. learn the material. o Maximizing links to internal information and minimizing links to external information. If your home page requires extensive use of graphics to demonstrate points. Based on suggestions made by the above mentioned style manuals. A popular site is the Web Style Manual. Letting the home page become out-of-date. In cases where page information is long. To avoid ugly and confusing home pages. Laying out home pages poorly and inconsistently. and get involved in thinking about the course material (Ackermann.4K modems. 1996).4K modem. Pages which take too long to download frustrate students and may force them to beat a hasty retreat. o Utilizing a consistent format for each of your pages.o Look at what is already available. While colored or patterned backgrounds can be used on homepages. warn your students. What Should I Put on the Home Page? The home page should help your students to find necessary course information. The purpose of your home page is to provide information on a specific subject area.
To avoid copyright problems. your university library.Provide access to your e-mail. link to discussion groups that you have set up for student-to-student communication. Assignments and Tests . your office hours.Distribute assignments and tests. or samples of what you expect. Animation.Include such items as course topics to be covered. and create forms that your students can use to report problems or provide biographical information about themselves..g. 1996): Course & Instructor Information . In addition. Class Communication . and grading policies. government documents or are already available on the WWW with author’s permission to distribute).Make lecture notes and handouts available either as web pages or as downloadable files. Reference Material . hints. electronic articles should either be written by you or in the public domain (e. The following elements can be included in your class home page (Ackermann. textbook information. and give solutions. Video. provide links to other pages which cover information on the topic. Distance Education at a Glance 46 . course objectives. provide for online completion or submission.This is more complex than other suggestions and will require that your students have access to computers with sound and video cards. similar courses that may also be available on WWW. discussion and active participation by your distant students.thought. and other on-campus resources that may help your student complete the course. Material covered in the classroom . Audio . Demonstrations.List materials in print and electronic form that supplement the textbook.
The Copyright Law of 1976 established the rights of the copyright holder as well as providing for the use of copyrighted materials. sound recordings. 1996). whether or not they have been published. What is Copyright? A copyright grants the holder the sole right to reproduce or grant permission to others to reproduce the copyrighted works. the provisions for education in the copyright law are often unclear for the distance education classroom. The protection is limited to original works. and confiscation of the materials that used the copyrighted works (17 USC sections 502-505). 1994).000 (Mason. These resources can range from a newspaper clipping to a book to a movie. Due to the time that the law was passed and the rapid advancement of technology for distance education. and architectural works (17 USC section 102. not the idea in and of itself (Brinson and Radcliffe. Distance educators have a unique dilemma when dealing with copyright law. motion pictures.CHAPTER: 12 COPYRIGHT AND DISTANCE EDUCATION Why Copyright? Educators have always utilized outside resources to enhance the learning experience for their students. are copyrighted materials. What is the Law? The Copyright Law of 1976 defined the right of the copyright holder. dramatic works. it is the expression of the idea that is copyrighted. items that may be copyrighted. For works created prior to 1978. especially in educational settings. However. The copyright holder is defined as the person who owns the exclusive rights to a work. The right to a work may be Distance Education at a Glance 47 . 1994). musical works. Copyright may be held on a variety of original works which include: literary works.000. All of these items. In order to comply with the law in the area of copyright and proper use of copyrighted materials. and Brinson and Radcliffe. educators must be aware of the law and the parameters that govern proper or ‘fair use’ of copyrighted publications (Dalziel. fair use guidelines. graphical works. 1995). and many other resources. copyright protection lasts 75 years from the date of first publication or 100 years from the date of creation of the work. There are both civil and criminal penalties for infringement of copyright law. attorney fees. contingent on which date allows the copyright to expire first. For works created after 1978. etc. protection begins at the creation of the work and lasts 50 years after the death of the author (17 USC section 104A). an injunction against the violator. Civil awards generally include a monetary award of up to $1.
rent. and to display the copyrighted work publicly (in the case of literary. 1991) and also outline the length of works that may be copied: A complete article or story less than 2. to perform the copyrighted work publicly (in the case of plays. they will open themselves to a lawsuit to challenge the use as fair. Distance Education at a Glance 48 . to prepare derivative works. 1995). musical. with the technology available today. spontaneity of the decision. 1995).) What is "Fair Use"? The concept of ‘fair use’ was established in the Copyright Law of 1976. or given away as the copyright holder deems appropriate. Congress never agreed to these guidelines. musical recordings. 1. or gift. It specifies situations in which copyrighted materials may be used without express permission of the copyright holder (17 USC section 107).500 words. it is very easy to abuse the ‘fair use’ provision. Section 107 of the Copyright Law lists four factors that define ‘fair use’ (17 USC section 107): The purpose and character of the use must be educational or non profit in nature. The US House of Representatives suggested that the three major considerations in determining fair use should be: brevity of the selection. However. The nature of the copyrighted work. However. but since they were established by a diverse group of educators and copyright holders. pictorial. Publishers and educators agreed to more specific guidelines which will provide a list of safe parameters in which colleges may operate. courts tend to recognize their validity (Dalziel. 1976). sold. The exclusive rights provided for in the Act (17 USC section 106) include: to reproduce the copyrighted work in any format. graphic works.). and the cumulative effect of the use of the selection (HR 1476. movies. Copied material must be an excerpt or a portion of the original work without being a critical portion. etc. This is the most difficult condition to determine and is the most controversial (Dalziel. The teacher may not impair the marketability of the work. if a college exceeds the guidelines. lease. These guidelines indicated that copying is allowed when the instructor decides to use a work spontaneously for educational purposes (NACS and AAP. etc. to distribute copies of the copyrighted work to the public by sale.000 words or 10% (whichever is shorter) of a prose work that is excerpted.used.
or periodicals. and no more than one short poem. How Can Copyright Permission Be Obtained? Copyright permission must be obtained from the copyright holder of the work in which you are interested. copyright notice is optional for works published on or after March 1. 1989. There are also several prohibitions related to fair use. or story or two excerpts can be copied from the works of any one author. 1991). and/or translator. The number of copies to be made. editor. address. and are not the law (NACS and AAP. Unauthorized copying may not substitute for the purchase of books. and telephone number. ISBN for books or ISSN for magazines. 1991): Full name(s) of the author. all copied materials MUST show the original copyright notice from the work. If the material will be used alone or in combination with other works. 1991). When requesting copyright permission. figures. Unauthorized copying may not be used to replace an anthology or compilation. and volume number of the work. Distance Education at a Glance 49 . such as a department head or dean. Unauthorized copying may not be directed by a higher authority. or an excerpt of a longer poem of not more than 250 words. so tracking down the copyright holder may be difficult (NACS and AAP. Name of the college or university. chart. Date when the material will be used. and Instructor’s full name. Exact pages. These are guidelines. article. diagram. Unauthorized copies may not be made of consumable works such as workbooks or standardized tests. edition. One illustration. authorized reprints. Copyright date of the work. The same instructor may not copy the same item without permission from term to term. and illustrations you wish to use. The guidelines also require that the copying be for only one course. and A short poem of less than 250 words. Title. or picture per book or periodical issue. Students cannot be charged beyond the actual cost of photocopying. include all of the following information (NACS and AAP. However. Lastly.
and it is not an issue that can be taken lightly. In doing so. Distance Education at a Glance 50 . It is strongly recommended that multimedia producers obtain copyright permission during. Original multimedia works are copyrighted. the Consortium of College and University Media Centers established a working group of educators and copyright holders to establish a group of mutually agreed upon guidelines for multimedia fair use (Dalziel. Conclusion A basic knowledge of copyright law is essential for any educator. Educators may use unreleased materials over a closed circuit. This is not a complete list. those involved tend to agree with the following statements (Dalziel. the students. you are probably in violation of the law.Copyright in Multimedia Productions As distance educators. but rather highlights that will assist in avoiding illegal copying of materials (Bruwelheide. Although no conclusions have been reached. Provide instructor and staff training in current copyright law and institutional policy. ask. 1994): Utilize the copyright policy adopted by your governing agency. the administration. and the institution with which they are all involved. Give proper copyright credit. not after. 1994): Combining content from other sources can be copyright protected. When in doubt. 1995). preparing multimedia presentations is a viable teaching strategy. the instructor must keep in mind some basic principles (Brinson and Radcliffe. 1995): Educators may use their own multimedia presentations for educational use. In 1995. and access to material must be limited to class members. Label equipment that may be used for unauthorized copying with a restriction. If you are copying to avoid purchase of a text. This issue concerns the instructor. Do not hesitate to request permission. Commercial reproduction or distribution must have copyright permission. Suggestions for Distance Education There are several precautionary steps that may be taken in order to avoid copyright infringement. the production is developed. Instructors in a distance education classroom are subject to additional concerns due to the nature of the educational environment. but realize that a great deal of educational copying is legitimate. Be aware of the law.
If you have questions regarding a specific circumstance. please contact your university counsel’s office and the additional references used to create this publication.Note Copyright law and intellectual property rights are extremely complex issues. Distance Education at a Glance 51 .
Binary: A computer language developed with only two letters in its alphabet. Audio Bridge: A device used in audio-conferencing that connects multiple telephone lines. Audio-conferencing: Voice only connection of more than two sites using standard telephone lines. American Standard Code for Information Interexchange (ASCII): A computer language used to convert letters. generally eight bits. Band: A range of frequencies between defined upper and lower limits. more and more instructors and students are becoming involved in both the technical and educational aspects of distance education. Bandwidth: Information carrying capacity of a communication channel.GLOSSARY OF DISTANCE EDUCATION TERMINOLOGY Why a Glossary? As distance education becomes more prominent on the university campus. Bit: Abbreviation for a single binary digit. The Glossary Analog: A signal that is received in the same form in which it is transmitted. Commonly thought of as the height of a wave. Browser: Software that allows you to find and see information on the Internet. numbers. while the amplitude and frequency may vary. Asynchronous Transmission Mode (ATM): A method of sending data in irregular time intervals using a code such as ASCII. and control codes into a digital code understood by most computers. ATM allows most modern computers to communicate with one another easily. Byte: A single computer word. Distance Education at a Glance 52 . Backbone: A primary communication path connecting multiple users. Amplitude: The amount of variety in a signal. Asynchronous: Communication in which interaction between parties does not take place simultaneously. It is important to understand distance education related terminology if the instruction and delivery is to be understood by all persons involved.
Digital signals can be transmitted faster and more accurately than analog signals. Digital: An electrical signal that varies in discrete steps in voltage. Compression: Reducing the amount of visual information sent in a signal by only transmitting changes in action. usually with a path in only one direction. Coined by William Gibson in Neuromancer. locations. Distance Learning: The desired outcome of distance education. Channel: The smallest subdivision of a circuit. Distance Education at a Glance 53 . Codec (COder/DECoder): Device used to convert analog signals to digital signals for transmission and reconvert signals upon reception at the remote site while allowing for the signal to be compressed for less expensive transmission. Compressed Video: When video signals are downsized to allow travel along a smaller carrier. Dial-Up Teleconference: Using public telephone lines for communications links among various locations. Computer Assisted Instruction (CAI): Teaching process in which a computer is utilized to enhance the learning environment by assisting students in gaining mastery over a specific skill. Digital Video Interactive (DVI): A format for recording digital video onto compact disc allowing for compression and full motion video. is used to bridge the gap. Cyberspace: The nebulous ‘place’ where humans interact over computer networks. etc.. frequency. Download: Using the network to transfer files from one computer to another. amplitude. Desktop Videoconferencing: Videoconferencing on a personal computer.Central Processing Unit (CPU): The component of a computer in which data processing takes place. often in tandem with face-to-face communication. Distance Education: The process of providing instruction when students and instructors are separated by physical distance and technology.
Fully Interactive Video: (Two way interactive video) Two sites interact with audio and video as if they were co-located. i. Hypertext: A document which has been marked up to allow a user to select words or pictures within the document. The amount of time between waves passing a stationary point. and connect to further information. audio. HTTP is a WWW address. Fiber Optic Cable: Glass fiber that is used for laser transmission of video. Frequency: The space between waves in a signal. Home Page: A document with an address (URL) on the world wide web maintained by a person or organization which contains pointers to other pieces of information.e. Distance Education at a Glance 54 . click on them. Host: A network computer that can receive information from other computers. Full Motion Video: Signal which allows transmission of complete action taking place at the origination site. highfrequency television used in educational program delivery. Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ): A collection of information on the basics of any given subject. and/or data. Hypertext Transfer Protocol (HTTP): The protocol used to signify an Internet site is a WWW site. Facsimile (FAX): System used to transmit textual or graphical images over standard telephone lines.Echo Cancellation: The process of eliminating the acoustic echo in a videoconferencing room. Electronic Mail (E-mail): Sending messages from one computer user to another. Hyper Text Markup Language (HTML): The code used to create a home page and is used to access documents over the WWW. often used on the WWW. Instructional Television Fixed Service (ITFS): Microwave-based. File Transfer Protocol (FTP): A protocol that allows you to move files from a distant computer to a local computer using a network like the Internet.
and/or video. Netscape: An example of browser software that allows you to design a home page and to browse links on the WWW. Multi-Point Control Unit (MCU): Computerized switching system which allows point-to-multipoint videoconferencing. Network: A series of points connected by communication channels in different locations. and data simultaneously.. Point-to-Multipoint: Transmission between multiple locations using a bridge. up to 30 miles). Listserv: An e-mail program that allows multiple computer users to connect onto a single system. creating an online discussion. Microwave: Electromagnetic waves that travel in a straight line and are used to and from satellites and for short distances (i. Multimedia: Any document which uses multiple forms of communication. such as text. Online: Active and prepared for operation. Point-to-Point: Transmission between two locations. video. Mosaic: An example of browser software that allows WWW use. Origination Site: The location from which a teleconference originates. Local Area Network (LAN): Two or more local computers that are physically connected. Point of Presence (POP): Point of connection between an interexchange carrier and a local carrier to pass communications into the network. audio. Interactive Media: Frequency assignment that allows for a two-way interaction or exchange of information. Modem: A piece of equipment to allow computers to interact with each other via telephone lines by converting digital signals to analog for transmission along analog lines. Also suggests access to a computer network. Distance Education at a Glance 55 .Integrated Services Digital Network (ISDN): A telecommunications standard allowing communications channels to carry voice.e.
Server: A computer with a special service function on a network. Slow Scan Converter: Transmitter/receiver of still video over narrow band channels. or formats for exchanging data that assures uniformity between computers and applications. Synchronous: Communication in which interaction between participants is simultaneous. Satellite TV: Video and audio signals are relayed via a communication device that orbits around the earth.PPP: A software package which allows a user to have a direct connection to the Internet over a telephone line. camera subjects must remain still for highest resolution. Serial Line Internet Protocol (SLIP): Allows a user to connect to the Internet directly over a high speed modem. generally receiving and connecting incoming information traffic. Transponder: Satellite transmitter and receiver that receives and amplifies a signal prior to re-transmission to an earth station. T-1 (DS-1): High speed digital data channel that is a high volume carrier of voice and/or data. Telecommunication: The science of information transport using wire. Teleconferencing: Two way electronic communication between two or more groups in separate locations via audio. or electromagnetic channels to transmit receive signals for voice or data communications using electrical means. Transmission Control Protocol (TCP): A protocol which makes sure that packets of data are shipped and received in the intended order. optical. Video Teleconferencing: A teleconference including two way video. Distance Education at a Glance 56 . rules. T-3 (DS-3): A digital channel which communicates at a significantly faster rate than T-1. T-1 has 24 voice channels. Protocol: A formal set of standards. and/or computer systems. radio. In real time. video. Often used for compressed video teleconferencing.
businesses. World Wide Web (WWW): A graphical hypertext-based Internet tool that provides access to homepages created by individuals. Uplink: The communication link from the transmitting earth station to the satellite.Uniform Resource Locator (URL): The address of a homepage on the WWW. and other organizations. Distance Education at a Glance 57 .
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