How Distance Programs will Affect Students, Courses, Faculty and Institutional Futures
Murray Turoff (New Jersey Institute of Technology, USA), Richard Discenza (University of Colorado at Colorado Springs, USA) and Carolin Howard (Techknowledge-E Systems, USA)
Copyright: © 2008
Designed properly, distance education classes can be at least as effective and, in some ways, even more effective than face-to-face courses. The tools and technologies used for distance education courses facilitate learning opportunities not possible in the face-to-face classroom. Distance programs are accelerating changes that are challenging students, faculty, and the university, itself. Currently, most faculty are rewarded for the quality of instruction, as well as their external funding and their research. Often, university administrators focus more attention on the efficiency of teaching than on its effectiveness. In the future, as the quality of distance learning increases, the primary factor for success will be the faculty’s commitment to excellence in teaching. Many institutions will be forced to reevaluate the quality of teaching as the institution becomes more visible to the public, to legislators who support higher education, and to prospective students.