*Evaluating Teaching and Learning on the Web*

Discussions in several composition lists center on two evaluation issues: computers (size, functions, etc.), and what we do with them (assignments, participation, etc.). At a deeper level, however, we need to understand effective conceptualization and design of computer mediated instruction. How, for example, can teachers know _why_ web pages, online assignments, web research, or some kind of presence in a virtual course are valuable, and to whom?

This paper argues that we can only measure the value of computer usage for teaching and learning by looking both _at_ superficial visual images, transmission, and reception, and _into_ the deep underlying purposes, designs, and personal involvement in the transmitted information. By re-viewing theories of educational evaluation and both quantitative and qualitative methodologies (Dillman 1978; Glass, et al. 1984; Goetz and LeCompte 1984; House 1973; Merriam 1988; Miles & Huberman 1984; Spradley 1979), the presenter explains means to evaluate online instruction and materials online.

Is our virtual presence as valuable as our "real" classroom presence? Is the design of our online materials as valuable in transmitting information as our "real" materials? With reliable and unbiased evaluation methods, we can assess when computer mediation and our online approaches are good choices -- and when they are not.

Presenter: Anne Bliss


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