There are many benefits to teaching and learning online. Online courses increase access to education for many students by providing a flexible approach to teaching and learning. Students may learn at their own pace and access course materials off campus. There are many digital technologies that facilitate effective online learning environments.


Myths About Online Learning

  • Online learning is about technology -  No, it is about people and student learning.
  • Online learning is fully online - It's not! Students are still in a physical world/context.
  • Students don't learn as much online as in F2F - The "no significant difference" studies show that modalities aren't the key to learning, objectives, teaching effectiveness, learner commitment, make the difference.
  • All online courses are the same - No! There are lots of different types of online courses: self-paced, collaborative, cohort-based, project-based, etc. 
  • Online learning is impersonal - No, personal connections can be made online. 

What is the difference between online, blended and other delivery formats?

  • An online course is conducted entirely using a learning management system. The online format is the primary method to deliver the course materials. Students and faculty never meet in the physical classroom. 
  • "Hybrid" or "Blended" are names commonly used to describe courses in which some traditional face-to-face has been replaced by online learning activities making it possible to reduce the amount of time spent in the classroom. Traditional face-to-face instruction is reduced but not eliminated. 
  •  A web/technology enhanced courses may have a course website or some instructional activities online, these supplement but do not replace face-to-face coursework. Students continue to meet in the classroom for the standard number of scheduled hours for that course.  10 Common Misconceptions About Online Courses by Justin York | Feb 14, 2017           

 

 

Definitions

Distance education is defined as a planned teaching-learning process that uses one or more technologies as a conduit for learning when students are separated from the instructor, requiring regular, substantive and supportive instructor-student and student-student interactions.  Interactions may be in real-time (synchronous) or delayed (asynchronous). The technologies may include but are not limited to the Internet; one-way and two-way transmissions through open broadcast, closed circuit, cable, microwave, broadband lines, fiber optics, satellite, or wireless communications devices; audio conferencing; or  DVDs, and CD-ROMs, if they are used in conjunction with any of the prior technologies.

  • An in-person (P) course has no course assignments and no required activities delivered online.
  • A web-enhanced (W) course is where no scheduled class meetings are replaced, but some of the course content and assignments, as well as required or optional activities, are online.
  • A partially online (PO) course has up to 20% of scheduled class meetings replaced with online activities or virtual meetings.
  • A hybrid (also known as a blended course) (H) course has between 33% and 80% of scheduled class meetings replaced with online activities or virtual meetings.
  • An online (O) course has more than 80% but less than 100% of scheduled class meetings replaced with online activities or virtual meetings.
  • A fully online (FO) course has 100% of scheduled class meetings replaced with online activities or virtual meetings. All of the class work, including exams, is online.