ERIC Number: ED177296
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1978-Sep
Reference Count: 0
Counseling the Distance Learner: A Survey of Trends and Literature.
Thornton, Robert; Mitchell, Ian
From the perspective of counseling the distance learner, this paper explores trends in literature which might reflect increased awareness of the needs of the non-traditional student and the establishment and mobilization of resources to meet those needs. It is noted that comparatively little has been written in this specialized field so that a major purpose is to provide focus for further work. The need for counseling for non-traditional students is documented in the context of worldwide expansion of non-traditional programs. Educational brokering--independent learning consultants functioning as intermediaries between diverse groups of students and the vast array of learning resources in their community--is highlighted as an encouraging component of any open education system. It is postulated that the need for counseling and information among non-traditional learners is greatest at the beginning of their study and that higher withdrawal rates among external students as compared to internal ones may be largely due to need for counseling. Four types of communication technology for distance counseling are examined: correspondence counseling, audio-cassette counseling, telephone counseling (five methods), and face-to-face counseling (three ways). Issues are also raised with regard to counseling the academic staff who work with distance students. Conclusions point up need for investigation of needs of non-traditional students, independent counseling services, training of specialist counselors, and the range of activities. The bibliography of over 150 items includes journal articles, conference papers, and reports largely of U.S., British, and Australian origin. (JT)
Descriptors: Adult Counseling, Adult Education, Correspondence Study, Counseling, Counseling Services, Educational Counseling, Educational Technology, Extension Education, External Degree Programs, Literature Reviews, Nontraditional Students, Open Education, Outreach Programs, Research Needs, Student Needs
Adelaide College of the Arts and Education, 46 Kintore Avenue, Adelaide, South Australia, Australia 5000 ($5.00; $3.50 for five or more)
Publication Type: Information Analyses
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: Adelaide Univ. (Australia).
Note: Research sponsored by grants from the South Australian Government