Long-Term Experiences in Mathematics E-Learning in Europe and the USA

Long-Term Experiences in Mathematics E-Learning in Europe and the USA

Sven Trenholm (Loughborough University, UK), Angel A. Juan (Open University of Catalonia, Spain), Jorge Simosa (Massachusetts Institute of Technology, MA, USA) and Amilcar Oliveira (Universidade Aberta, Portugal)
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-60960-875-0.ch012
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Abstract

This chapter presents a comparative study regarding four long-term experiences teaching mathematics online at four different universities in Europe and the USA. The chapter first begins by discussing general differences in e-learning adoption between the USA and Europe (with specific focus on asynchronous e-learning). Second, some of the major benefits and challenges of mathematics e-learning are discussed. Third, the chapter describes some specific experiences with mathematics e-learning at the four universities (two European and two American) - these descriptions focus on methodological and practical aspects of the e-learning process in mathematics courses. Finally, a comparative analysis highlights common patterns and differences among the different models and some key factors for successful mathematics e-learning practice are identified along with a set of recommendations.
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Growth In E-Learning: Europe Vs. Usa

Acting as a complete replacement or as a complement to traditional face-to-face (F2F) instruction, asynchronous e-learning is perhaps the fastest growing segment in the US higher education sector. Asynchronous e-learning, commonly facilitated by media such as email and discussion boards, supports interactions among learners and with instructors, even when participants cannot be online at the same time (Hrastinski, 2008). Recent estimates for the US indicate that e-learning, acting as a complete replacement, has seen average annual enrollment increases of just below 20% between 2002 and 2008, with an estimated 300,000 faculty engaged in fully online instruction (including an estimated 20 to 25% of 2008 U.S. college students enrolling in at least one online class; Mayadas et al., 2009).

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