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Thursday, July 06, 2017

Faculty, students share distance learning concerns | Education Dive - Higher Ed

"Some faculty are worried that student outcomes may be negatively affected and that the proper support may not be available, while students crave more interaction" says Pat Donachie, Author.
Photo: Education Dive

Dive Brief:
  • As online learning possibilities continue to flourish, a new whitepaper indicates that many faculty members are concerned the approach will lead to less satisfactory learning outcomes for students, according to eCampus News, but institutions can combat this by being proactive and transparent about releasing outcome data.
  • Educators are also worried that staff support for online learning will not be available, leaving professors to go it alone with unfamiliar technology and tools, and only 30% of surveyed faculty members felt their institution had a fair system for compensating educators for online instruction.
  • Additionally, The Hechinger Report analyzed a survey of students’ views on online learning, with surprising findings including that many respondents lived near the institution in which they were enrolled in online classes, and nearly 60% wanted to be able to interact personally with professors and other students.

Dive Insight:  
In all surveys, students and educators alike found that they would benefit from in-person or face-to-face meetings, whether it was the presence of support on site for educators, or for students who valued interaction with educators and students by large margins, including virtual “office hours.” The fact that many students do not live far from the institution in which they have enrolled online should inspire school administration to be confident in investing in in-person educator and staff availability for students and faculty in online courses. The close distance could indicate that doing so isn't a misuse of resources.

The survey results can also offer campuses and institutions competing with online institutions insight into how they can attract students who may be gravitating towards online options. The fact that many students enroll in an online course they could commute to could indicate that there may be a different prohibitive factor than distance, whether it is cost or the time a conventional education could take.
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Photo: Education Dive

Robotics and AI tech can revolutionize classroom ed by Pat Donachie, Author.
"Utilizing robotics tech in K-12 classrooms to assist early learners in math can pay off in dividends later in their educational career."

Source: Education Dive