Ethical issues in e-learning


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Ethical issues in e-learning

  1. 1. Ethical Issues in E-Learning Soraj Hongladarom Department of Philosophy andCenter for Ethics of Science and Technology Chulalongkorn University
  2. 2. OutlineEthical Issues for e-LearnersEthical Issues for e-TeachersEthical Issues arising within the context of e-Learning in general
  3. 3. Ethical Issues for LearnersInappropriate assistance on examinationsMisuse of sources on papers and projectsWriting assistance and other inappropriatetutoringMisrepresentation in the collection andreporting of dataImproper use of academic resourcesDisrespecting the work of others
  4. 4. Ethical Issues for LearnersLack of protection for human subjects inresearchBreaches of computer ethicsLack of adherence to copyright and copy-protection Fass, R. A. (1990) Cheating and plagiarism. Ethics and Higher Education.
  5. 5. Ethical Issues for E-LearnersTaking one’s own responsibility in learning (This is typically Thai problem – as Thai learners are not mature enough.)Self disciplineIndependenceSelf motivationAbility to set goals and pursue means toachieve the goals
  6. 6. Ethical Issues Concerning E- Learning ItselfCriticism → E-Learning can’t substitute for face-to-face learning This is true, but e-learning is better than no learning; Face-to-face learning can be detrimental if conducted badly E-Learning can be better if conducted well.E-Learning and learning outcomes How can e-learning realize learning outcomes and be contribute to Qualification Framework?
  7. 7. Ethical IssuesPrivacyIntellectual Property and CopyrightsNetwork Security‘Netiquettes’Digital divide Who benefits from the digital content?Theses for sale
  8. 8. Looking into the FutureE-Learning will become more prevalent.Robot teacherImplanted computer chip in the brainEnhanced humans – Transhuman Enhanced cognitive abilities which results in more effective learning Ethical issue – what about those who are not enhanced?Automated teaching
  9. 9. E-Learning and Moral EducationCan e-learning help educate more ethicalpopulation?Learning does not take place only in theclassroom – this is trivially true in the case of e-e-learning, but the content of e-learning and e-activities does not have to be entirelyacademic.Integration of online and offline activities –study trip, getting together, charity work.
  10. 10. Blurring the Boundary between Traditional and Cyber-UnivsTraditional universities are exploring ways tooutreach the public through offerings ofclassroom content – hence they are alsobecoming ‘cyber’ universities.However, the offerings are only one-way at themoment.Cyber-U’s then can do the same – offeringspace for students to get together; this is veryimportant for extra-curricular activities.
  11. 11. CriticismHubert Dreyfus, “Anonymity versusCommitment: The Dangers of Education on theInternet” E-learning cannot succeed in achieving real education because it does not foster long lasting commitment which is necessary for achieving meaning in life. Kierkegaard – aesthetic, ethical and religious spheres of existence. Internet can achieve the first two but not the third. The Net makes people fleeting, shopping around, so no real commitment.
  12. 12. ObjectionBut we don’t need to have the same goals ofeducation as Dreyfus or Kierkegaard.We can have real commitment through the Net,even become deeply religious. Dreyfusmisunderstands the nature of the Net – The factthat there is a lot of info on the Net does notmean that one has always to shop around.But that won’t happen automatically.
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