Development Trends in Economics of Distance Education from the Perspective of New Technologies

Development Trends in Economics of Distance Education from the Perspective of New Technologies

Eren Kesim
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-4666-5162-3.ch016
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New and developing technologies influence all societies in the 21st century in which the process of change is experienced intensely. Through the increased routes of access to knowledge and the increased importance of up-to-date information, the needs and expectations of individuals have become more varied. Countries with individuals equipped with new and current information in accordance with the needs of the age have an important competitive advantage in the global economy. The importance of education as a social institution grows every day in this process. In the 21st century understanding of education, which portrays the individual as a value to be developed, many sub-fields of expertise have emerged as educational sciences developed further. Studies in these fields allow for educational institutions to train and raise more qualified people. One area of expertise that guides national educational policies today is distance education. Distance education services provided by emerging technologies provide flexible learning opportunities for all individuals. An important aspect in providing distance education services is the economics of distance education. This chapter studies the economic aspects of distance education services through a general evaluation of emerging technologies with regard to the economics of distance education.
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The Growing Importance Of Economics Of Distance Education

In accordance with new improvements in the world economy, technologies and societies, people take part in the economic system more than ever before. With emerging technologies, collaboration on a global scale has become a reality (Tapscott & Williams, 2006, pp.10-11).

Key Terms in this Chapter

Changes in the Economics of Education: The widespread use of information and communication technologies in educational institutions has caused a structural change in these institutions. An influential aspect of this transformation is regarding the financial processes and cost components. The rapid growth in technology investment in educational institutions along with the importance of integrating cost effective and purposeful technologies in educational institutions requires the re-evaluation of economics of education from new perspectives during this process of technological change.

Digital Economy: The paradigm shift that takes place in the economy with the broad use of developing digital technologies (Tapscott, 1996).

Knowledge Economy: A new approach that emphasizes the economic value of knowledge, drawing attention to the increasing amount of knowledge accumulated thereby indicating the importance of investing in human capital to establish the economy as a social institution for a competitive advantage on a global scale (Melody, 2007).

Economics of Distance Education: A new perspective with growing importance with regard to the provision of distance education services, which has developed through the approaches of the economics of education particularly in accordance with the novel approaches to fulfill individual’s educational needs.

Costs of Distance Education: Basic cost variables such as technological infrastructure and educational processes that influence the achievement of the goals set by educational institutions providing distance education services (Perraton & Naidu, 2006).

New Technologies: Information and communication technologies that contribute to the development process of society, guide social institutions through the process of change and influence every aspect of life.

Network society: The social reality of the 21st century, denoted by the widespread use of information and communication technologies in both society and institutions, emphasizing the importance of being able to access new information quickly and effectively through a network structure (Van Dijk, 2012).

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