ERIC Number: ED429776
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1999-Mar
Reference Count: N/A
Ten Years of Distance Learning: Changing To Meet Geographical, Institutional, and Student Characteristics.
Schuster, John W.; Collins, Belva C.; Hall, Meada G.; Griffen, Ann B.
A series of U.S. Department of Education grants has enabled the University of Kentucky to deliver a graduate program on low incidence disabilities to students in rural areas via distance education. In 1989, the initial Training Rural Educators in Kentucky (TREK) project involved physically moving coursework to rural London, Kentucky. In subsequent years, satellite and compressed video technology were added, the number of project sites was increased, a team teaching model was introduced, and expert guest lecturers were added. Practica have been supervised at the distance sites throughout the program's history. Lessons learned during the 10 years of the program are discussed. These include: (1) get everything in writing before starting; (2) the bottom line for a university is money; (3) higher enrollment is a mixed blessing; (4) do not expect change overnight; (5) some technologies are more appropriate than others, and sometimes technology is not appropriate at all; (6) distance learning students may have different expectations than their on-campus counterparts; (7) the quality of coursework does not have to change when distance learning technology is used; (8) scheduling distance learning courses can be a nightmare; (9) everything that can go wrong will go wrong; and (10) do not take anything for granted. Continual evaluation of regional, institutional, and student needs is of prime importance, and due to constantly developing technology, one must embrace an attitude of change and good humor. A table presents variables in the evolution of TREK distance learning projects, categorized by geographic, institutional, and student needs. (TD)
Publication Type: Guides - Non-Classroom; Reports - Descriptive; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A