ERIC Number: ED207430
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1981
Reference Count: N/A
The Organization of the Distance Teaching Sub-System in an Open University.
Chacon, Fabio J.
The problem of finding an adequate organization for the distance teaching subsystem in the Open University of Venezuela (Universidad Nacional Abierta) is analyzed. Problems facing this subsystem concern: communications with the headquarters and within the learning centers network, interaction with the environment in order to create a favorable balance of resources, and capacity for influencing the top-level decision-making in the institution. Analysis of these problems through an open system perspective provides some insights about the factors that determine the problems. It is suggested that the current design of the organization is not oriented to receive external influences and take advantage of them to create resources for the institution. The failure of the structural design can be appraised as a serious impairment for the effectiveness of the institution in accomplishing its teaching function. Alternative organizational designs for the distance teaching subsystem might include the concepts of unit differentiation and integration, loose coupling, use of scanning units, and design of program-specialized staff positions. It is proposed that the internal structure of the learning centers include a Relations Unit, which would manage the institutional links between the center and external organizations. The proposed structure of the local center has greater specialization of functions as compared with the current structure. A bibliography is appended. (SW)
Descriptors: Centralization, College Administration, Decentralization, Extension Education, External Degree Programs, Foreign Countries, Higher Education, Independent Study, Open Universities, Organizational Change, Organizational Communication, Regional Cooperation, Resource Centers, School Organization
Publication Type: Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Venezuela