Culture, Interaction, and Online Learning
Janet Toland (Victoria University of Wellington, New Zealand), Jonathan Frank (Suffolk University, USA) and Karen D. Schenk (K.D. Schenk and Associates Consulting, USA)
Copyright: © 2005
Technological innovation and the development of global knowledge-based economies are presenting higher education institutions throughout the developing world with both opportunities and challenges. The development of distance education has particular relevance for remote and widely distributed locations. The scattered geography of the South Pacific has produced immense variations in culture amongst a relatively low population base. This makes the South Pacific an ideal region in which to explore the impact of cultural differences on online learning. Online learning offers the developing countries of the South Pacific the chance to open up access to even the most distantly located students. This research evaluates the effectiveness of e-mail as a mechanism for encouraging Web-based interaction among students in two distance education institutions with a culturally and geographically diverse student body.