Module 1:

Online Learning

Learning Objectives:
Describe the key elements of distance online programs.
Identify terms and definitions associated with eLearning.
Discuss benefits, limitations, challenges, and weaknesses of eLearning.
List the successful characteristics of facilitator/instructors and students.
Evaluate if online teaching is for you.
Instructional
Activities:

Section 1 - FREEBIES

Get this FREE Ebook: The Insider's Guide to Becoming a Rapid E-Learning Pro. You'll receive practical, real world tips for eLearning. success.
Receive a complimentary subscription to Campus Technology. FREE subscriptions are available for individuals who work in colleges and universities.
FREE Courses. Not familiar with OpenCourseware? Go to Massachusetts Institute of Technology OPENCOURSEWARE web site. Review over 1,800 Free Online Courses. If you choose to use any of the course materials follow these directions in Cite/Attribute OCW Content.
Excellence in Teaching. Penn State has a century of distance learning expertise and they have wonderful information available for you to use. Watch the five minute overview to learn more about the resources and functionality.


Section 2 - Distance Education Overview

Engineering Outreach at the University of Idaho has developed an excellent web site; Distance Education at a Glance. You will find an Overview, Strategies for Teaching, Instructional Development, Evaluation, Television, Computers, Print, Strategies for Learning, Research, Videoconferencing, WWW, Copyright, and a Glossary. 
The Illinois Online Network (ION) takes a look at each of the Key Elements of an Online Program. Review these elements.
If Networking Terms and Definitions are not your "forte," have no fear. You'll find more than you can ever use at this location.

Section 3 - Benefits, Limitations, Challenges, Weaknesses

Benefits of E-Learning
The Virtual University Design and Technology Department at Michigan State University list some reasons why MSU faculty teach online.
Strengths of Online Learning shares valid reasons why online programs are rapidly becoming popular.
Limitations of Online Teaching listed at Michigan State University.
ION indicates weaknesses that can pose threats to the success of any online program; Weaknesses of Online Programs.
The author believes there are 10 ways in which online education excels. Ten Ways Online Education Matches, or Surpasses, Face-to-Face Learning.


 Section 4 - Facilitator and Learner Success

Louisiana Tech University Principles of Good Practice and Principles of Good Practice Certification Form
blue pinReview this short two-page white paper, What Are the Essential Characteristics of the Successful Online Teacher and Learner?, presented at the Virtual Pedagogy Conference, UW Oshkosh.
The facilitator/instructor is vital to the success of an online course. ION reviews What Makes a Successful Online Facilitator.
Be aware of ways to Prepare E-Learners for Online Success.


Section 5 - Flowchart and Self-Assessment

Is online teaching right for me? Here is a decision making flowchart from Michigan State University.
The College of DuPage has a Self-Assessment Quiz to help students determine if they possess the technical skills needed to succeed in online learning.  
Assignments:
I recommend that you print each of the above instructional activities and place them in a three-ring binder under the heading Module 1. This will provide access should the hyperlinks change or if you prefer to highlight sections for later review.
Assessment - once you have reviewed, become familiar with, and completed each section of the instructional activities, e-mail, jamess@latech.edu, the following "I have successfully completed Module 1." Be sure you enter your name in case you are not using your La Tech e-mail address. Thanks, James Smith.

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