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Policy for the provision of distance education in South African universities in the context of an integrated post-school system

This policy seeks to resolve areas of uncertainty and provide strong support for the progressive development of South African university distance education as an indispensable and integral component of the national post-school education system. The policy is part of a broader focus on building the capacity of the post-school system but focuses primarily on university education because of its unique features. The development of this policy has taken place in the context of two important factors: the development and release of the ‘White paper on post-school education and training’ with its imperative to expand the system dramatically; and increasing, but by no means ubiquitous, penetration and affordability of information and communication technologies (ICTs) across South Africa. Both factors have a seminal impact on the provision of distance education in the public and private university sector.

This policy seeks to resolve areas of uncertainty and provide strong support for the progressive development of South ...  Show Full Abstract  

Corporate authors: South Africa. Department of Higher Education and Training
Date: 2014
Geographic subjects: Africa; South Africa
Resource type: Policy document
Series name: Government gazette = Staatskoerant (South Africa. Department of Higher Education and Training
Subjects: Policy; Teaching and learning; Higher education;

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Massive open online course (MOOC) report 2013

The University of London International Programmes launched four massive open online courses (MOOCs) on the Coursera platform in June 2013. Each of the MOOCs lasted six weeks and was designed to offer a short introduction to subjects the university offered as full degrees. The initial offering of four MOOCs attracted over 210,000 initial registrations, over 90,000 active students in their first week, from over 160 countries and lead to 8,843 Statements of Accomplishment being attained. The programmes offered achieved an aggregate student satisfaction rating of 91 per cent (ranging from good to excellent). While it is still too early to evaluate the conversion of students completing a MOOC to enrolment on a University of London International Programmes degree, over 30 students who applied to the university's 2013/14 fee-paying programmes have indicated that they took one of the MOOCs beforehand.

The University of London International Programmes launched four massive open online courses (MOOCs) on the Coursera platform ...  Show Full Abstract  

Authors: Grainger, Barney
Date: 2013
Geographic subjects: England; Great Britain; Europe
Resource type: Report
Subjects: Higher education; International education; Teaching and learning;

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Going beyond Kirkpatrick's Training Evaluation Model: the role of workplace factors in distance learning transfer

This article emanates from a longitudinal study of the impact of a distance education programme for teacher training on graduates' job performance, in which the authors built on the findings of a previous pilot study. After using Kirkpatrick's Training Evaluation Model in a previous study, one of the authors found there to be a strong relationship between graduates' completion of the programme and their performance at school. However, the model does not probe factors that impede on transfer of learning. Quite a number of the graduate participants indicated that they were faced with this problem. In order to further probe this phenomenon, the authors fused Baldwin's Transfer of Training Model with the second level of Kirkpatrick's model by using a mixed-methods enquiry. It became clear that the organizational climate of schools has a strong influence on the transfer of learning in the workplace. Suggestions are presented on how educators and school managers can work together effectively.

This article emanates from a longitudinal study of the impact of a distance education programme for teacher training on ...  Show Full Abstract  

Authors: Aluko, Ruth; Shonubi, Ololade
Date: 2014
Journal title: Africa education review
Resource type: Article
Subjects: Teaching and learning; Skills and knowledge; Students;

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The development of massive open online courses (MOOCs) in New Zealand

The aim of this project was to provide a baseline account of massive open online courses (MOOCs) in the New Zealand context. An introductory section puts MOOCs into their theoretical and conceptual context in commitments to freedom, citizenship, knowledge for all, social progress, individual transformation and 'openness'. Five themes emerged from the literature: the disruption of higher education; open learning; technology and education; the political economy; and learners and learning. Stakeholders identified a range of potentially disruptive effects of MOOCS, but there is evidence of significant caution among organisations in adopting MOOC models. Disruption may occur from issues of access, price and non-traditional modes of learning, new models of learning and incompatibilities. Little is yet known about MOOC learners, but many see the potential to improve access and reduce costs to learners, including particular groups of learners. The conclusion examines the themes raised in the report and considers options for the sustainable development of MOOCs in the New Zealand context.

The aim of this project was to provide a baseline account of massive open online courses (MOOCs) in the New Zealand context. ...  Show Full Abstract  

Authors: Gordon, Elizabeth Audrey; Peters, Michael; Besley, Tina
Date: 2014
Geographic subjects: New Zealand; Oceania
Resource type: Report
Subjects: Teaching and learning; Technology; Innovation;

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Distance learning can help low-income parents attend school: TANF agencies should adopt supportive policies

Distance learning is an increasingly popular way to acquire higher education. Distance learning programs are particularly attractive to nontraditional students, including low-income parents, who often must fit their classes around work and family responsibilities. The current economic recession provides an opportunity for low-income parents who are working part-time or having trouble finding employment to use distance learning to get more education and advance once the economy recovers. However, states may be placing unnecessary limits on distance learning to meet work participation requirements under the Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) program. On February 5, 2008, in the final rule implementing the Deficit Reduction Act of 2005 (DRA) changes, the US Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) declared that states can count distance learning coursework as a work activity under the vocational educational training classification. This paper identifies language from HHS-approved work verification plans that other states can adopt to maximize access to distance learning and raise work participation rates. It also highlights some restrictive and burdensome language that should be dropped from work verification plans.

Distance learning is an increasingly popular way to acquire higher education. Distance learning programs are particularly ...  Show Full Abstract  

Authors: Lewis, Matt
Date: 2009
Geographic subjects: United States; North America
Resource type: Paper
Subjects: Teaching and learning; Students; Disadvantaged;

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'We thought we would be the dunces': from a vocational qualification to a social work degree: an example of widening participation in social work education

The policies of successive UK governments have promoted access to higher education by students from diverse social backgrounds. This paper uses the example of social work education to examine one way in which the Open University (OU) has sought to attract 'non-traditional' students into higher education. It draws on findings from a small-scale research study that explored the experiences of students with vocational and other prior qualifications who gained 'advanced entry' to the university's social work programme in Scotland. The paper explores the interplay between students' day-to-day experiences of transition and broader influences on widening access to education, including the political and organisational contexts within which this change has taken place. It reflects on both the university's learning from the experience of implementing this initiative and the continuing experience of widening participation in relation to social work education and, more broadly, to distance learning practices in higher education.

The policies of successive UK governments have promoted access to higher education by students from diverse social ...  Show Full Abstract  

Authors: Gordon, Jean; Dumbleton, Sue; Miller, Christina
Date: 2010
Geographic subjects: Great Britain; Scotland; Europe
Journal title: Widening participation and lifelong learning
Resource type: Article
Subjects: Participation; Higher education; Providers of education and training;

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Initial trends in enrolment and completion of massive open online courses

The past two years have seen rapid development of massive open online courses (MOOCs) with the rise of a number of MOOC platforms. The scale of enrolment and participation in the earliest mainstream MOOC courses has garnered a good deal of media attention. However, data about how the enrolment and completion figures have changed since the early courses is not consistently released. This paper seeks to draw together the data that has found its way into the public domain in order to explore factors affecting enrolment and completion. The average MOOC course is found to enroll around 43,000 students, 6.5 per cent of whom complete the course. Enrolment numbers are decreasing over time and are positively correlated with course length. Completion rates are consistent across time, university rank, and total enrolment, but negatively correlated with course length. This study provides a more detailed view of trends in enrolment and completion than was available previously, and a more accurate view of how the MOOC field is developing.

The past two years have seen rapid development of massive open online courses (MOOCs) with the rise of a number of MOOC ...  Show Full Abstract  

Authors: Jordan, Katy
Date: 2014
Journal title: International review of research in open and distance learning
Resource type: Article
Subjects: Participation; Higher education; Outcomes;

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Distance learning in adult basic education: a review of the literature

The purpose of this literature review is to provide background information about distance learning (DL) in adult basic education (ABE), specifically, to identify program design and policy implications to inform the use of [distance education] DE for [general educational development] GED students in rural Pennsylvania. Adult educators have long sought to encourage greater participation in, and more equitable access to, educational opportunities for adult learners. This literature review examines how DE can help adult educators address issues of equity and participation, especially in rural areas with restricted educational opportunities. In Pennsylvania, for example, rural residents tend to have lower educational attainment and more limited access to adult education services than their urban counterparts.

The purpose of this literature review is to provide background information about distance learning (DL) in adult basic ...  Show Full Abstract  

Authors: Gungor, Ramazan; Prins, Esther
Date: 2011
Geographic subjects: United States; North America
Resource type: Paper
Subjects: Teaching and learning; Research; Adult and community education;

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Satellite lessons: vocational education and training for isolated communities

At the Western Institute of Technical and Further Education (WITAFE) in New South Wales (NSW), vocational education and training (VET) courses are being delivered to students in isolated homesteads and remote Aboriginal communities by Interactive Distance eLearning (IDL). IDL provides satellite-supported two-way broadband voice, one-way video and Internet access for school-age and adult distance education. Adults commonly access VET courses offered by WITAFE using the equipment provided to their children who are students of a 'School of the Air' or through community facilities in remote Aboriginal communities.

At the Western Institute of Technical and Further Education (WITAFE) in New South Wales (NSW), vocational education and ...  Show Full Abstract  

Authors: Twyford, Kylie; Crump, Stephen; Anderson, Alan
Date: 2009
Geographic subjects: New South Wales; Australia; Oceania
Journal title: Rural society
Resource type: Article
Subjects: Vocational education and training; Demographics; Indigenous people;

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'It took me ages to work out': multiple challenges of digital distance vocational learning

This research examines the challenges of blending digital, distance and vocational learning for non-traditional and low socioeconomic status students who are new to university education. A survey of students in vocational primary education and early years qualifications in a distance university is illuminated by interviews with individual students and video diaries recorded by them during module study. Areas of challenge include: where and when to go online, finding support for digital study, navigating virtual learning environments and knowing what is relevant, technologies in the workplace, making connections between workplace technologies and [information and communication technology] ICT for study, and storing and organising digital information. As university education goes increasingly online, the research aims to improve institutional awareness and provision for widening participation, and makes suggestions for improving the experience of digital distance vocational learning.

This research examines the challenges of blending digital, distance and vocational learning for non-traditional and low ...  Show Full Abstract  

Authors: Safford, Kimberly; Stinton, Julia
Date: 2014
Geographic subjects: Great Britain; Europe
Resource type: Article
Subjects: Vocational education and training; Teaching and learning; Technology;

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