Alternative Delivery Mechanisms in Distance Education

Alternative Delivery Mechanisms in Distance Education

M. Gordon Hunter (The University of Lethbridge, Canada) and Peter Carr (Athabasca University, Canada)
Copyright: © 2003 |Pages: 13
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-59140-064-6.ch007
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Abstract

Technology is providing a positive impact on delivery mechanisms employed in distance education at the university level. Some institutions are incorporating distance education as a way to extend the classroom. Other institutions are investigating new delivery mechanisms that support a revised perspective on education. These latter institutions are revising their processes for interacting with students and taking a more “learner-centered” approach to the delivery of education. This chapter discusses the impact of technology on the delivery mechanisms employed in distance education. A framework is proposed here that presents a description of alternative modes of generic delivery mechanisms. It is suggested that those institutions that adopt a delivery mechanism employing an asynchronous mode can gain the most benefit from technology. This approach seems to represent the only truly innovative use of technology in distance education. The approach creates a student-oriented environment while maintaining high levels of interaction, both of which are factors that contribute to student satisfaction with their overall educational experience.

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