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"...an invaluable ressource for teachers who need to know more about open and distance learning - across any academic discipline."
Posted January 31, 2000
In this practical and timely volume, Distance Learning, The Essential Guide, authors, Marcia L. Williams, Kenneth Paprock, and Barbara Covington, provide clear commentary on the basic issues surrounding distance learning. This book presents an original combination of learning resources like reading case studies, tear-out worksheets, and checklists. In addition, the book contains templates designed to be copied and a very useful and updated glossary of terms, converting this book in a practical material indispensable for all teachers who need to go inside of the distance leaning world. The authors organized the book in six chapters that provide you with the foundation needed to teach from a distance. To begin introducing open and distance learning, the first chapter presents the history and growth of this field and the way evolving technologies have been transitioned into existing distance learning formats. The authors continue in Chapter Two by analyzing the concepts and components that make up an open and/or distance learning environment as well as including recommendations in order that the reader can appreciate a futurist view in roles and competencies for a specialization in this area. Using several case studies, Chapter Three introduces a broad overview of all practical considerations that can be applied as you set up an open and /or distance learning network. These include: equipment, network, technical, usage, cost, and also advantages and disadvantages that you can find in the process of implementation. The transitional change process, resisting change, identifying of barriers, and ways how others have overcome educational situations by building on comfortable and familiar scenarios are detailed in Chapter 4. In Chapter Five, the paradigm of teaching from a distance is radically different from teaching face-to-face is broken. The authors claim 'it is true that there are differences, it is also true that the basic principles for teaching and learning from a distance are the same as the basic principles for any teaching and learning environment.' The last chapter includes information to begin to turn verbal information into visual communication, including ideas on working with space, working with text and fonts, and visual relationships. Williams, Paprock, and Covington present a very practical book with a strong theoretic foundation. This book lends itself as an important resource for the every professional who needs to use distance learning, including teachers, trainers, and every person that want to transmit knowledge using the infinite possibilities of the technology in an efficient and effective way.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.