Presentation71 Abstract

Putting Your Course on the Web: Bridging Social and Policy Distances

Many colleges and universities see online instruction as a cure-all for budget shortfalls, lack of classroom space, problems with returning students, issues concerning distance education, and increasing student load for instructors. Putting courses online, either on a LAN or on the World Wide Web, seems practical and innovative. Public institutions see such instruction as a mean to obtain additional funding for technology from state legislatures; private institutions believe a focus on technology and instruction will enable them to increase contributions from private and public agencies.

While online courses may appear to be an easy way to solve a lot of problems, pitfalls lie ahead for the institutions, instructors, and students when courses move out of real space and real time into cyberspace and asynchronous time. Even though online courses present solutions, the sticky path to resolvingsdistances between institutional goals, social and cultural expectations, and academic policies frequently lies in the way of successful implementation of online courses. Instructors find themselves mired in networked policies and administrators rather than neatly installed on the Web.

Based on experience in developing and facilitating online course, the presenter will discuss underlying policies and deep social expectations held by institutions as they affect an instructor's goals for teaching and students' learning online. Practical aspects of planning and dealing with administration and technical support as well as budgets for time and money will be presented. The presenter will also discuss ways to adapt "real" curriculum to the "virtual" classroom, i.e., how to set up online lectures, deliver and receive assignments in a timely fashion, and how to hold effective class discussions. Evaluation strategies will also be presented.

Author: Anne Bliss


Target Audience: Not Applicable

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