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e learning verses traditional learning

Extracts from this document...

Introduction

University of Teesside Certificate in Education EDU20004-N Individual Study L2:20 CATS E Learning verses Traditional Learning Produced by Kevin Monaghan Introduction Within my report I hope explore in detail and critically evaluate in depth both Learning methods in an unbiased approach and evaluate findings in terms of impact upon practice. My report will highlight both strengths and weakness in both methods. I also want to demonstrate within this essay what I have learnt during my two years on this course both in the classroom and in my teaching practice. E learning has been part and parcel of education and training in the western world for many years now. In recent times, since the Internet took the world by storm, online learning has become accessible to people in various parts of the world. Now e-learning has found its way into the educational system of developing nations as well. The advancement in technology and communication has made teaching and training almost possible anywhere, anytime. This brings me to the question of how relevant traditional methods of teaching like classroom teaching are in the modern world. Will a teacher or a trainer eventually become dispensable? Will textbooks and other reference books cease to exist? Will writing be totally replaced by the keyboard? Will there be no schools and colleges in future? Will e-learning companies replace traditional publishing companies? Before I attempt to answer these questions, it is important to understand what it takes to make teaching or training effective? Whether it is traditional classroom instruction or e-learning, the key areas of designing a course and implementation remain the same What is E Learning? It includes the use of technology as part of a conventional or traditional course where learners and teachers may never meet face to face. The 'technology' includes not just computers and the networks that connect them, but also the software such as e-mail, online databases and CD-ROMS, and the peripherals such as video cameras and interactive whiteboards. ...read more.

Middle

And, of course, not all students are motivated by the same values, needs, desires, or wants. Some of your students will be motivated by the approval of others, some by overcoming challenges. Researchers have begun to identify those aspects of the teaching situation that enhance students' self-motivation (Lowman, 1984; Lucas, 1990; Weinert and Kluwe, 1987; Bligh, 1971). To encourage students to become self-motivated independent learners, instructors can do the following: 1. Give frequent, early, positive feedback that supports students' beliefs that they can do well. 2. Ensure opportunities for students' success by assigning tasks that are neither too easy nor too difficult. 3. Help students find personal meaning and value in the material. 4. Create an atmosphere that is open and positive. 5. Help students feel that they are valued members of a learning community. Research has also shown that good everyday teaching practices can do more to counter student apathy than special efforts to attack motivation directly (Ericksen, 1978). Most students respond positively to a well-organized course taught by an enthusiastic instructor who has a genuine interest in students and what they learn. Thus activities you undertake to promote learning will also enhance students' motivation. Again with E learning i.e. learndirect courses, all courses need to have a personal learning goal attached them, the goal has to be SMART specific, measurable, achievable, and realistic and time bound. Failure to attain unrealistic goals can disappoint and frustrate students. Tutors should encourage students to focus on their continued improvement, not just on their grade on any one test or assignment. It helps students evaluate their progress by encouraging them to critique their own work, analyse their strengths, and work on their weaknesses. (Sources: Cashin, 1979; Forsyth and McMillan, 1991) Learning Styles There are many ways that people learn and E learning is not for everyone, I personally learn by a wide variety of delivery methods i.e. ...read more.

Conclusion

This essay has indicated that clients/learners tended to learn more and be better prepared when faced with the active learning styles presented in a blended delivery approach, many of these students preferred being able to meet with other students and tutors in the classroom. The social contact was a very important part of their learning. I also found the passive lecture format of the classroom to be easier. As more courses move toward being online, ways to provide this social interaction and individual contact with other students and tutors must be found. Online courses must be evaluated to ensure that content is being learned. Research in the area of online learning needs to be a priority as this way of teaching and learning continues to grow Summary At the risk of sounding fairly absurd - teaching online is very much like, and very much unlike, classroom teaching. Let me explain. Many of the tasks and functions performed by an instructor online are much like classroom functions. For example, regardless of medium, learning is still the goal...and learning happens through communication. Communication happens on several fronts - student to student, student to teacher, student with content, and student with the interface of technology. The critical aspects of learning (brain-compatible classroom, learning styles, multiple intelligence, etc.) don't vary from online or classroom. If the process or core activities don't change from classroom to online, what does? The biggest change is the role and function of both the teacher and the student. The teacher needs to shift perspective from the "provider of knowledge", to a "facilitator of knowledge". The student needs a similar shift - from passive learner to active learner. This is a very rough overview - but it captures the heart of the transition needed to succeed online. The real challenge, as always, lies in the details of making it happen. Teaching online involves acquiring a new set of beliefs about what it means to be a teacher. The teacher's role online is to guide, direct, and equip students with the skills and abilities to provide for their own educational needs in the future. ...read more.

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