The article brings up a very common and valid argument regarding online learning, that it is an isolated event that provides little connection to those in a class. This can be true of a regular classroom as well. Unless we use the tools to engage, there will be only a one-size fits all. Technology continues to bridge the gap between the two types of classes. It may not ever reach the full benefit that smaller class discussions have but it is also an unfair comparison. Not all classes you can take are going to have that either.
“With every class we teach, we need to learn who the people in front of us are. We need to know where they are intellectually, who they are as people and what we can do to help them grow. Teaching, even when you have a group of a hundred students on hand, is a matter of dialogue.”
“Online education is a one-size-fits-all endeavor. It tends to be a monologue and not a real dialogue. The Internet teacher, even one who responds to students via e-mail, can never have the immediacy of contact that the teacher on the scene can, with his sensitivity to unspoken moods and enthusiasms. This is particularly true of online courses for which the lectures are already filmed and in the can. It doesn’t matter who is sitting out there on the Internet watching; the course is what it is.”
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