ERIC Number: ED387172
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1991-Aug
Distance Learning: An Alternative Approach to Education in the Information Age.
Lever-Duffy, Judy C.
Distance education makes use of the technologies of the Information Age to address the needs of a broader and more complex educational market than traditional methods. Because distance delivery does not follow the rigid structure of the traditional course, it can provide instruction to individuals whose location, personal circumstances, or family obligations would not otherwise allow them to take courses. Techniques and technologies used in distance education include print media via correspondence courses; audio-based instruction through radio transmissions, audio cassettes, and the telephone; video-based instruction, including television broadcasts, video conferencing, video cassettes, and video discs; and computer-based approaches utilizing electronic mail, electronic conferencing, electronic bulletin boards, and telecommunications networks. The goal of an integrated distance learning system should be to deliver effective instruction using whatever combinations of these technologies that are necessary. Further, programs must focus on three objectives: increasing access without restrictions of location and time, avoiding isolating learners from the benefits of the interaction with instructors and peers, and utilizing as many deliveries as possible to address the learning styles and needs of the target audience. Distance education will bring knowledge to the learner and technology will provide the means; educational institutions need only provide the platform on which to build distance education programs. (Contains 17 references.) (KP)
Descriptors: Access to Education, Community Colleges, Computer Mediated Communication, Computer Uses in Education, Distance Education, Educational Media, Educational Strategies, Educational Technology, Instructional Systems, Nontraditional Education, Program Development, Student Needs, Telecommunications, Telephone Instruction, Two Year Colleges
Publication Type: Opinion Papers; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Note: Paper presented at the Annual Technology Conference of the League for Innovation in the Community College (San Diego, CA, November 4, 1991).