METU • FACULTY OF EDUCATION
CEIT 471 The Business of e-learning
Course Code 4300471
Credit Hours 3(3-0) ECTS credits 5
Course Status Elective
Maximum Class Size
Student of Other
Student Quota for Other Departments: 20
Proposed Semester All semesters
Instructor Dr.Tarkan Gürbüz
Catalogue: This course offers participants the opportunity to explore the emerging
business side of e-learning. Participants will explore organizational and strategic issues
associated with developing and delivering e-learning through a wide range of topics
including: e-learning business analysis, e-learning business design, e-learning
marketplace, legal and ethical considerations, strategic partnerships and funding,
special issues in e-learning and the global environment, the future of e-learning
business. Participants will be provided with the fundamental background knowledge of
the business design principles, using business planning models, conducting product
and market analyses, the development of business and marketing plans, the use of
common business analysis tools, financing major investments, and analyzing various
risk considerations. Participants examine private and publicly traded education
companies that are marketing e-learning products and services to the consumer
market and study the use of sound business practices and market processes impacting
the success of e-learning enterprises, conduct business evaluations of e-learning
enterprises, and learn strategies for funding new e-learning enterprises to support the
development and implementation of effective e-learning programs.
Course Objectives and Goals
The main objective of the course is to enable participants to acquire an integrated
understanding of the interrelated subjects and issues involved in the business of e-
learning and to prepare them to respond effectively to those issues and processes
which impact the success of e-learning ventures. Assimilation of theoretical material
will be balanced with the development of professional knowledge and skills to
undertake critical evaluations of eLearning ventures, including market, finance,
technology and partnership perspectives, and to be able to apply this learning to the
design and successful launch of new e-learning projects in the public and private
domain to engage in the e-learning business.
Upon completion of this course, class participants should be able to:
1. Identify educational, organizational and strategic issues associated with
developing and delivering e-learning;
2. Describe the e-learning industry landscape including the characteristics of
players, products and markets;
3. Demonstrate a working knowledge of the business design principles with the
skills necessary to carry out business analysis and use business planning
models impacting the success of e-learning ventures;
4. Describe the dynamic nature of e-learning marketplace by conducting product
and market analysis;
5. Discuss the market processes and perform the development of business and
marketing plans in the business of e-learning;
6. Discuss legal and ethical considerations, partnerships and funding, special
issues including political and cultural issues in the e-learning business by
relating with global environment;
7. Conduct critical evaluations of different ventures in the business of e-learning
through various perspectives including technology, finance, market and
8. Demonstrate knowledge of strategies for funding new e-learning ventures;
9. Drive strategies for collaboration, opportunities for marketing, efficiencies and
economies in e-learning delivery and calculate return on investments;
10. Discuss the future of e-learning business.
Weeks Topics and Deadlines
1. First meeting, review of e-learning
2. Introduction of the preliminary session aimed at providing fundamental
concepts needed for the participants to construct a business understanding
3. The e-learning Industry Landscape (players, products, markets)
4. Business design principles
5. Market processes in e-learning business
6. e-learning market analysis
7. e-learning business analysis
Developing Marketing Plan Assignment Due
8. e-learning business design
9. e-learning business models
10. e-learning marketplace
Developing Business Plan Assignment Due
11. Legal and ethical considerations, strategic partnerships and funding, special
issues in e-learning and the global environment
12. Key success factors in e-learning business
13. The future of e-learning business
14.Final Project Due and presentations
• Aldrich, C. (2004). Simulations and the Future of Learning : An Innovative (and
Perhaps Revolutionary) Approach to e-Learning. San Francisco : Pfeiffer,
• Garrison, D. R., Anderson T. (2003). E-learning in the twenty-first century. New
• Keegan, D., (1996) Foundations of Distance Education, Routledge
• Additional readings and learning resources for the course will be provided.
• Kapp, K. M. (2003). Winning E-Learning Proposals. J. Ross Publishing
• Kelly, T., Nanjiani, N. (2005). The Business Case for E-Learning. Cisco Pres.
• Meloy, J.(2005). Renaissance eLearning. John Wiley & Sons, Inc.
• Allen, M.W. (2003). Michael Allen’s Guide to E-Learning. John Wiley & Sons, Inc.
• Horton, W. (2001). Leading E-Learning. The American Society for Training and Development.
Laboratory Work Required
During laboratory works, participants will study the course assignments and
projects and perform necessary research related with the course topics.
Main Teaching Modes
Lectures, Assignments, Discussions, Lab Works, Projects.
1. Complete classroom activities. (300 pts) Complete class attendance is
expected. Completion of the reading assignments and classroom participation is also
2. Midterm. (100 pts) A paper-pencil written exam o review what students learned
during the lectures.
3. Marketing Plan development Project. (200 pts) Participants will design,
develop, write a rationale and present marketing plan for e-learning using appropriate
4. Business Plan Development Project. (250 pts) Participants will design,
develop a business plan associated with developing and delivering e-learning . Also
they will write a detailed rationale paper.
This is a hands-on course and will require additional time on the computer outside of
scheduled class times. This course is designed for students with intermediate level of
computer literacy. The goal is to develop skills and knowledge to deliver instructional
strategies at a distance in order to support the development and implementation of
effective e-learning programs.
5. Final Exam. (150 pts) A paper-pencil written exam o review what students
learned during the lectures about the business of e-learning.
Evaluation and Grading Percentage %