📑 Online schooling and distance ed? Don’t be afraid, we’ve been doing and improving it for 100 years

Bookmarked Online schooling and distance ed? Don’t be afraid, we’ve been doing and improving it for 100 years (EduResearch Matters)

Importantly, having to do school online isn’t so much a revolution or cause for concern, it’s the everyday normal for thousands of children. The reaction to the closing schools brings into sharp focus the assumption that schooling is face-to-face when it is not for so many students in Australia. More so, it reminds us that rather than rural education constantly being framed as ‘disadvantaged’ it should in fact now be showcased as ‘world leading’.

This provides an opportunity to highlight a key equity issue beneath assumptions. Online learning can be as good as ‘real school’. It is for those communities, students and teachers for whom it is already their everyday reality.

Philip Roberts and Natalie Downes discuss some of lessons that can be learnt from years of distance education in light of the current transition to online learning. They found that there are five main types of relationships that we focus upon:

  • Learner to teacher relationship
  • Learner to learner (peer) relationships
  • Learner’s relationship to the content
  • Learner to system relationship
  • Vicarious interaction or social presence

For more reflections on distance education, Gill Light shares some of her own thoughts and experiences.

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