Considering your learning in this course and the presentation this week by Dr. Siemens, reflect on the current and future perceptions of distance learning in our society. Take into account the societal forces in the world, including the advocates for and skeptics of distance learning, and consider the following:
- What do you think the perceptions of distance learning will be in the future (in 5–10 years; 10–20 years)?
Distance Learning will be a leading way for education in the future. Within the next five to ten year, there probably will not be too much of a shift, however ten to twenty years from now I would predict that most people are involved in some form of distance learning. The popularity will probably grow significantly. An article written by Chris Dede (2005) states that we (educators) need to be prepare for the “neomellennial learning styles”. This group that is growing up in the age of the internet is going to be more accepting of online learning than their predecessors.
- How can you as an instructional designer be a proponent for improving societal perceptions of distance learning?
The design, development, and delivery of a course are what make it successful (Simonson, Smaldino, & Zvacek, 2015). Whether it is a course taken online or in a face-to-face learning environment, it has to be planned carefully with the student’s learning needs in mind. According to Simonson, Smaldino, & Zvacek (2015), “well-designed courses provide students with engaging learning experiences”. I believe educators and instructional designers are crucial to the betterment of distance learning. As Simonson, Smaldino, & Zvacek (2015) stated, technology is a tool; a vehicle for delivery. It is the planning process that is so critical when developing an online course.
- How will you be a positive force for continuous improvement in the field of distance education?
As an instructional designer of distance learning, I think it is very important to continually keep up with technological advances and find ways to include technology into our instructional experiences. By providing students with enriching experiences, while learning online, will be the best advocates for distance learning in the future. By giving students quality, enriching distance learning experiences will help to reduce the many misconceptions society has regarding distance education.
Dede, C. (2005). Planning for neomillennial learning styles. Educause Quarterly, 28(1), 7–12.
Siemens, G. (n.d.). The Future of Distance Education. Laureate Education, Inc.
Simonson, M., Smaldino, S., & Zvacek, S. (2015). Teaching and learning at a distance: Foundations of distance education (6th ed.). Boston, MA: Pearson Education, Inc.