ERIC Number: EJ1030362
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2014
Reference Count: N/A
The Anatomy of Online Offerings
Hoskins, Barbara J.
Journal of Continuing Higher Education, v62 n1 p62-64 2014
The perceptions about online teaching and learning are frequently different from the reality. Some students say they expected the online course to be easier than the traditional face-to-face course and are surprised by the rigor, while skeptics decry the quality of online offerings since students cannot possibly learn as well online as they do in a physical classroom with the teacher. In reality, offering online courses and programs requires careful planning, decision making, and preparation. The business plan for these courses and programs should address funding sources, sustainability, increased fixed and variable expenses, break-even points, and return on investment. Program success depends on a clear understanding of the potential students, their needs, and their preferred channels of communication. One of the first steps in curriculum and instruction design is based on market analysis. Who is likely to enroll and why? Is this program targeted at traditional-age students who are looking for more flexibility in their schedules, at working professionals seeking to complete or expand their degree credentials, or at career changers? In conclusion, the anatomy of online courses and programs is a complex and dynamic system. Program planning and decisions involve administrators, coordinators, faculty members, and students. To travel from a kernel of an idea to a successful online program is a challenging, creative, and continuous journey.
Descriptors: Electronic Learning, Educational Finance, Financial Support, Sustainability, Outcomes of Education, College Students, Student Needs, Enrollment, College Administration, Institutional Mission, Curriculum Development, Course Evaluation
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: Higher Education; Postsecondary Education
Authoring Institution: N/A