ERIC Number: ED343575
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1990
Distance Education Interaction and Feedback at a Glance.
Alaska Univ., Anchorage.
Distance education can solve many educational problems; however, it creates two challenges as well. Effective interaction and feedback become particularly important in ensuring that the distance education course is rewarding for both the teacher and the students. Students may feel isolated due to geographical distances, cultural diversities, competing obligations among school and family, unfamiliar technology, and lack of support systems. In order to promote interaction, teachers should study such characteristics of their students as age, employment status, and family situation. Teachers may also discover why students enrolled in their courses, their educational experience, and their content-related interests. The role of the teacher as facilitator becomes more important in the creation of an atmosphere conducive to student interaction. Teachers can send letters of welcome to students, emphasize the need for focused discussion, and provide opportunities for students to participate. In order to provide adequate feedback teachers should be prepared to contact each student weekly and return assignments without delay. Feedback from students is necessary for course improvement and modification. Finally, teachers can help students become aware of and make adjustments to new communication and learning patterns. This brief guide begins by pointing out differences between distant and traditional classrooms. It then provides: (1) suggestions for ways to learn about students; (2) an outline of the instructor/facilitator's role; (3) guidelines for obtaining feedback to and from students; and (4) some suggestions for ways to meet student needs. (DB)
Publication Type: Guides - Non-Classroom; Opinion Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: Alaska Univ., Anchorage.
Note: For related guides, see IR 015 466-471.