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Issues in Distance Education: New Directions for Higher Education, Number 173



Issues in Distance Education: New Directions for Higher Education, Number 173

Maureen Snow Andrade (Editor)

ISBN: 978-1-119-23662-7 March 2016 Jossey-Bass 112 Pages


In this environment of disruptive technological change, higher education institutions must determine whether they will develop and offer technology-supported, hybrid, or online courses and degrees, which courses and degrees, how many, for whom, and for what purpose. They must make decisions about development models and design, processes, costs, and student and faculty support.

In this volume, the authors explore the current and future practice of distance education in higher education institutions, including:
  • developing an initial infrastructure to support course design and development,
  • revitalizing existing structures and processes for distance education, and
  • cutting-edge practices that innovate and lead the field.
These topics help guide decision makers as they determine appropriate responses to distance learning opportunities.

This is the 173rd volume of the Jossey-Bass quarterly report series New Directions for Higher Education. Addressed to presidents, vice presidents, deans, and other higher education decision makers on all kinds of campuses, it provides timely information and authoritative advice about major issues and administrative problems confronting every institution.

Maureen Snow Andrade

1. Issues in Distance Education: A Primer for Higher Education Decision Makers 9
Michael Beaudoin

This chapter presents an overview of current issues related to distance learning in higher education. It identifies central questions, issues, challenges, and opportunities that must be addressed by decision makers, as well as key attributes of effective leaders.

2. Theories of Distance Education: Why They Matter 21
Farhad Saba

This chapter presents an overview of theories of distance education and discusses their implications for future policy making and practice in institutions of higher education.

3. Effective Organizational Structures and Processes: Addressing Issues of Change 31
Maureen Snow Andrade

This chapter describes organizational structures and processes at the institutional and project levels for the development and support of distance learning initiatives. It addresses environmental and stakeholder issues and explores principles and strategies of effective leadership for change creation and management.

4. The Course Development Plan: Macro-Level Decisions and Micro-Level Processes 43
Karen Franker, Dennis James

A key step in distance learning project management is the creation of a course development plan. The plan should account for decisions related to materials, curriculum, delivery methods, staffing, technology applications, resources, reporting lines, and project management—issues that may require administrator involvement and support, particularly for evolving distance learning programs.

5. Writing Materials: Insights Into Course Design and Writing Processes 55
Aubrey Olsen Bronson

This chapter explores how course designers and content writers engage with each other, develop materials, and determine a design model, course components, and supporting technology.

6. Learner and Faculty Support 65
Sharon Guan, Daniel Stanford

This chapter identifies effective ways to address learner and faculty support. It introduces methods for building a successful learner support system by providing sufficient resources and proactively addressing learner motivation. It also addresses effective faculty support through institutional policies, resources, training, and course development.

7. Global Expansion and English Language Learning 75
Maureen Snow Andrade

Demand for higher education is global. As institutions extend opportunities beyond their borders, English language proficiency must be considered. This chapter focuses on considerations related to global expansion, with an emphasis on the role of distance English language courses and the distinct considerations in their development.

8. Innovation and Global eLearning: A Case Study at Brigham Young University–Idaho 87
Alan L. Young

This chapter provides a case study of innovation using online learning in higher education. The case study shows how one university made system-wide organizational and procedural changes to create low-cost, open-access distance learning opportunities on a global level in response to student needs and opportunities.

9. On the Cutting Edge: Movements and Institutional Examples of Technological Disruption 97
Marjorie Roth Leon, Todd Alan Price

This chapter describes technological disruptions in higher education that pose challenges and offer opportunities to college and university students, faculty, and administrators. It provides examples of innovative responses being explored by 2-year and 4-year higher education institutions.