Peter Dirr Thesis

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Peter Dirr

How can the quality of distance education be measured reliably and validly?

According to Dirr, the quality issues in distance education are addressed in a variety of ways. Some of these issues relate to the differences between online and classroom education. Such issues then for example relate to the "quality of instruction and the amount of interaction between the instructor and student.

In order to reliably and validly measure the quality of distance education, it is best to consider the outcomes of the instruction. Students can for example be tested against a control group of classroom students for the same material. A favorable result would then be one in which students obtain similar results.

According to Dirr, there is indeed a body of evidence towards highlighting the qualitative effect of e-learning on the student experience. Despite a lack of gestures and other subtle clues that are present only in the classroom, online instruction has the advantage of developing higher level thinking skills. The cited experience of both faculty and students, according to the author is that online communication allows clearer thought processes by means of revision, resulting in higher level thinking, interaction, and understanding.

What criteria are appropriate for assessing the quality of distance education? Are those same criteria appropriate for assessing the quality of classroom-based education?Get full Download Microsoft Word File access
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Thesis on Peter Dirr Assignment

Because the instruction environments differ so completely, the same criteria cannot be applied to measuring the quality of both. Dirr cites Charles Cook's view of the matter: "...assumptions of what happens in a traditional classroom cannot be made about an online course." Indeed, according to Cook, more explicit and detailed criteria would be applicable to the latter for a variety of reasons. Not least of these is the fact that online education has not been part of any curriculum for a long time. Many new issues are at stake, including the quality of instruction and time spent during interaction. Furthermore, teacher training is also an essential element in this; online communication between instructor and student have particular elements that differ from classroom interaction. Although some critics have projected that more stringent criteria would ultimately elevate the standard of classroom instruction as well, the likelihood of this has been debated.

The most important issue to understand is that criteria have to be standardized and applied in a uniform way across all online instruction settings. Communication among tertiary education institutions and relevant education professionals as well as academics is essential.

2.Do tertiary institutions have clear policies about distance education course in program quality?

While considerable research has been aimed at the issue, not all tertiary institutions have… [END OF PREVIEW] . . . READ MORE

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