Online learning equivalent to face-to-face teaching?

An article in The Australian today (Ausmas, 25 July) entitled ‘E-study lifting its game’ by Brad Howarth quotes Swinburne academic Bruce Calway:

THERE is a common belief that education delivered online is inferior to that delivered in a classroom, but Swinburne University international associate dean Bruce Calway says research from his recent PhD project reveals no basis for such views.
One of the surveys I have conducted shows there is no significant statistical difference in exam outcomes or learning outcomes,’’ he says.

Postulating on the reasons, an argument is put forward that online-only learners are more focussed and motivated. While this may be true in the bulk of higher ed institutions in Australia, one might speculate that the more readily available one-on-one teaching at Bond will still bring us out ahead of online learning. This might be further amplified with the support of the very online teaching tools that other universities use now being available to Bond in the form of iLearn, which adds further support to our face-to-face teaching.

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About Michael Rees
Academic in IT interested in Web 2.0 and social media

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