Interaction in Distance Education: A Cultural Critique of Instructional Dialogue

Interaction in Distance Education: A Cultural Critique of Instructional Dialogue

Evrim Genc Kumtepe (Anadolu University, Turkey) and Nazife Sen Ersoy (Dumlupinar University, Turkey)
Copyright: © 2018 |Pages: 27
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-5225-3076-3.ch012
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Education is a product of the objects and actors in the process of interaction. Interaction is, therefore, an important factor that affects the quality and sustainability of education. For this reason, this section will focus on interaction and its theories and approaches which are a popular and versatile concept in distance education. In the first part of the chapter, the concept of interaction will be discussed with different dimensions and components. Interaction in the following section will be examined within the framework of Moore's Theory of Transactional Distance, Anderson's Interaction Equivalency Theorem, and Gorsky and Caspi's Theory of Instructional Dialogue. At the end of the chapter, the nature of the interaction in distance learning will be discussed in the context of the studies on instructional dialogue and the cross-cultural comparisons will be addressed to the issue of the role of interaction in distance settings.
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Distance education appears to be a quite popular education option for adult learners by its main features such as access to education material and flexibility in time and place. Distance learning has certain limitations as well as these superiorities. Many of these, such as not having a generally configured learning culture, physical distances between individuals, demand for a high level of discipline and autonomy, absence of a known learning atmosphere, reduction of face-to-face communication between individuals, and more emphasis on internal communication have been mentioned in literature (Bouhnik & Marcus, 2006). Among these, it has been stated that “interaction” is one of the most important elements that influence learning and a learner (Moore, 2001; Picciano, 2002). Interaction is a concept that has continued to be discussed from many different aspects and defined in a variety of ways. This chapter focuses on interaction concept by its theoretical and practical reflections in the context of distance education and in the final part, its influence on distance science and language learning are discussed within the scope of culture.

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