The expansion of distance learning and an understanding of the benefits it can offer to both the university and the individual has led to the growth of methodologies, pedagogies and models aimed at diversifying and maximising the student experience and increasing student numbers. This paper will address these issues in relation to the establishment of a flexible, but complex, distance learning model developed for the international market by the Centre for Archive and Information Studies (CAIS) at the University of Dundee. It will argue that the role of technology can be overplayed for an educational programme seeking to provide professional, online qualifications to information professionals and will provide a practical, reality-driven example of providing education at a distance that will assist fellow educators to make informed decisions in the implementation process. Based on experience, the authors will argue that effective online instruction is dependent upon (1) high-quality and easily accessible learning materials; (2) expert tuition; (3) student support; (4) flexibility; (5) the creation of an online community; (6) and reliable technology.
- Distance Learning