Online Learning Update

September 22, 2010

John Ostwald: Pros and cons of online learning

Filed under: Online Learning News — Ray Schroeder @ 12:01 am

by John Ostwald, the Troy Record

I was excited to hear that my friend had a baby, but also confused by this joyous message. My friend’s name is Barry. He isn’t married, in a relationship or even dating anyone. Subsequently, he explained that he had given birth to a new course. He teaches at a college nearby. He said that the process for the development of this course was like a pregnancy. It took him at least nine months and involved a lot of aches and pains. Barry said that his course was “online” which is sometimes also known as “distance learning.” Before I mention some of these issues, let me tell you a little about Barry. He is in his 50s and was not brought up on computers. He loves being in the classroom where he can be spontaneous and use the non verbal responses of his student to facilitate the class. He says that he has spent years developing “experiential tools, thoughtfully designed, to stimulate the classroom environment and assist in motivating students to learn.” He would rather listen to the sound of your voice than read email. He would much rather talk than text. He said that he really didn’t want to take on this challenge but he thought that it would be good for him. “It is the wave of the future.”

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