On line learning:
We had three keynote speakers at the conference: I will be following up on their websites to learn more and to review their presentations, which you can also do if you are interest.
Dr. Thomas Sticht, International Consultant in Adult Education,
Dr. Willard Daggett, CEO of the International Centre for Leadership in Education,
Susan Patrick, President of iNACOL,
There were several common themes, and some areas of disagreement, and a fair amount of hyperbole.
One area of general agreement was that online education is growing fast.
Patrick pointed out that the number of school children in the US taking online courses had gone from 70,000 five years ago to over 2 million today. But in a number of foreign countries things were moving faster. India and China see online education as a way to bring education to remote areas, and to reduce the cost of building schools. Singapore insists that every teacher teach at least on course online, and the average per student is 2.3 courses out of five.
Daggett and others pointed out that children are more comfortable online than their teachers. It was also pointed out that remedial adult education that simply repeats the kind of education that students struggled with in the first place is unlikely to prove very successful.
Online learning has a number of advantages:
it allows for constant upgrade for struggling learners, rather than summer school or adult ed.
it can connect the home, the school, the library etc.
it can be customized and allow the learner to move at his or her own pace
it provides the teacher more flexibility in the use of time and where to teach from
good teachers can even become education entrepreneurs
it can solve problems of shortages of qualified teachers in maths, science or foreign languages
self-assessment, or constant assessment of learning is easier to do
Studies have shown that many learners prefer online learning.
On line learning: