Presentation on theme: "5/4/2015sarah guri-rosenblit1 Challenges Facing Distance Education in the 21 st Century : Implications for Setting the Research Agenda Sarah Guri-Rosenblit."— Presentation transcript:
5/4/2015sarah guri-rosenblit1 Challenges Facing Distance Education in the 21 st Century : Implications for Setting the Research Agenda Sarah Guri-Rosenblit EDEN, Fifth Research Workshop Paris, 20 October, 2008
5/4/2015sarah guri-rosenblit2 Distance delivery in higher education – Clear mission for over 150 years Providing second-chance students the opportunity to pursue academic or professional studies
5/4/2015sarah guri-rosenblit3 Second-chance parameters Lack of entry qualifications Work/family/health constraints Remote location Being a woman ……..
5/4/2015sarah guri-rosenblit5 Typical Research Topics Comparison with outcomes in conventional education settings Perseverance in studies Explanations of drop-out rates Use of diverse technologies Impact of support systems Economies-of-scale…. ……..
5/4/2015sarah guri-rosenblit6 Current Influential Trends Growing access to higher education Globalization Emergence of the ICT Marketization Blurring of boundaries between DE and conventional universities
5/4/2015sarah guri-rosenblit7 Teaching and Research Are DTUs only/mainly teaching universities? Are DTUs only/mainly teaching universities? If research oriented – what kind of research? (DE related or general and broad?) Relevance of league tables (Opting to a ‘world-class university’ status?)
5/4/2015sarah guri-rosenblit8 The Grand Question: Should research be done ON distance education Should research be done ON distance education or or Should research be performed BY distance educators in different disciplines
5/4/2015sarah guri-rosenblit9 Scope of Operation (Global, National, Local?) Target populations Curricula Role of academic faculty Nature of support systems Budgeting Language of instruction
5/4/2015sarah guri-rosenblit10 Scope of Operation (2) The wider the scope of operation, the more challenging it is to set effective quality assurance mechanisms The application of ICT is most instrumental in designing a global network, but national infrastructures vary enormously
5/4/2015sarah guri-rosenblit11 Scope of Operation (3) What kind of effective quality assurance mechanisms are to be used by DE providers in global, national and local contexts? What are the optimal ICT uses in global, national and local contexts?
5/4/2015sarah guri-rosenblit13 Size & Mode of Operation (2) Size was most crucial in the industrial mode, but not in the e-learning model Is there an optimal size for DE delivery online? What are the future leading models of DE?
5/4/2015sarah guri-rosenblit14 Size & Mode of Operation (3) Are there still cost-effectiveness advantages to DE delivery in the digital age? How can the large DTUs restructure their overall operation and underlying premises?
5/4/2015sarah guri-rosenblit15 Spectrum of Curricula Unique or the same as in conventional universities? Broad/comprehensive or in niche areas? Academic degrees? Professional and continuing education? Academic degrees? Professional and continuing education? Undergraduate or graduate focus? Undergraduate or graduate focus?
5/4/2015sarah guri-rosenblit16 Spectrum of Curricula (2) Should DE providers widen access mainly in market-demanded areas or in nationally-needed domains? Should DE providers broaden access to undergraduate studies? Graduate studies? Professional development? Personal development?
5/4/2015sarah guri-rosenblit17 Distance Education Providers: Enabling or Supporting Institutions ? DE- more demanding than F-2-F Novices in academia need more guidance Students of disadvantaged backgrounds need even more support
5/4/2015sarah guri-rosenblit18 Distance Education Providers: Enabling or Supporting Institutions ? (2) How to design most effective support systems in multiple contexts? Who is to budget the appropriate support mechanisms (state governments, NGOs, philanthropic donors, students themselves)?
5/4/2015sarah guri-rosenblit19 Public vs. Private Institutions in Distance Education Large DTUs – governments’ initiation Market initiatives- danger of ‘diploma mills’ Private operation within public institutions Quality control mechanisms
5/4/2015sarah guri-rosenblit20 Public vs. Private Institutions in Distance Education (2) Whose responsibility it is to impose quality assurance mechanisms in private DE institutions? How to design effective DE private endeavors within public universities?
5/4/2015sarah guri-rosenblit21 Employment of Digital Technologies Challenging the industrial mode of DE Digital divide (developed vs. developing countries, rich vs. poor) Role of NGOs in setting appropriate infrastructures Potential of mobile technologies
5/4/2015sarah guri-rosenblit22 Employment of Digital Technologies (2) Acknowledging that DE and e-learning are not the same thing How various-type DE providers harness the ICT to serve their goals? What are the appropriate measures to overcome the digital divide among nations and within nations? Consolidation of research findings on ICT
5/4/2015sarah guri-rosenblit23 “When it comes to technology, most people overestimate it in the short term, and underestimate it in the long term”. Sir Arthur Clarke
5/4/2015sarah guri-rosenblit24 Guri-Rosenblit, S. (2009). Digital Technologies in Higher Education: Sweeping Expectations and Actual Effects. New York: Nova Science. ISBN –
5/4/2015sarah guri-rosenblit25 Competition vs. Collaboration Identification of competitors (DE institutions or conventional universities?) Identification of cooperating parties (In academia and the corporate world, within national boundaries and beyond, both in teaching and research)
5/4/2015sarah guri-rosenblit26 Competition vs. Collaboration (2) How fruitful collaboration promotes widening of access? How fruitful collaboration enhances quality assurance mechanisms? How fruitful collaboration promotes the creation of research networks on DE and other fields (and contributes to the status of DTUs)?
5/4/2015sarah guri-rosenblit27 Intellectual Property vs. Intellectual Philanthropy DE institutions as leading academic publishing houses Defining the role of DE providers in the Open Source movement
5/4/2015sarah guri-rosenblit28 Intellectual Property vs. Intellectual Philanthropy (2) To what extent does the open source movement influence the revenues of DTUs as publishing houses? How to mobilize the open source movement to widen access to higher education and professional development?
5/4/2015sarah guri-rosenblit29 Language of Instruction Serving national needs (academic textbooks in national languages) English as the academic lingua franca
5/4/2015sarah guri-rosenblit30 Language of Instruction (2) To what extent does the knowledge of languages (and particularly English) influence: Access to higher education? Equity in higher education? Effective use of the Internet and digital technologies’ potential?