E-Learning and DistanceLearning in the UKAble 2nd MeetingAdana, December 2011
Snapshot of the UK Higher Education sector• There are over 300 institutions in the UCAS scheme including universities, colleges of higher education and further education colleges that offer HE courses. [Ucas 2011]• Undergraduate students attending on-campus courses will study for at least three years to obtain their bachelors degree.• An institute can only call itself a university in the UK after being instituted by Royal Charter (basically this is an official recognition by the State). Only universities can award a degree (whether it be bachelor, master or other). [study2u.com]
Non University distance learning aspects• Government Supported distance learning – focussed on helping people with core skills: – Maths – English – Computers and IT – Job Seeking Skills – Life Skills – Business and Job Specific Skills• They also „sell‟ on-line courses to businesses and feature both face to face and distance learning.. A Recent JISC study into online learning , delivered by the technology assisted lifelong learning centre (TALL) at the University ofOxford, identified more than 2,600 courses already being delivered online inthe UK, and worldwide the area is seen as having huge potential for growth. There may be many more, a true number is hard to get hold of, but some organisation exist, like the “The BritishInstitute for Learning & Development” to badge courses of quality…
The history of e-learning, distance learning, open education in the UK and How it developed… • The Open University was the worlds first successful distance teaching university, founded on the belief that communications technology could bring high quality degree-level learning to people who had not had the opportunity to attend traditional campus universities.. – 1960’s - Conception – 1970’s - Realisation and Acceptance – 1980s – Expansion and Introduction of Technology – 1990’s - Changing Audience – 2000s - Innovation in Teaching MethodsThe Open University still produces programs withthe BBC – on televsion and Radio, that fits in witheducational aspects of courses..
VLEs’s Blackboard and Moodle VLE take up Some Universities have a combination of both e.g. University wide Blackboard Blackboard and Other Department, or course specific Moodle. Other have a custom built VLE. Following a £5 millioninvestment in 2005, The Open University, UK is the second- Most Blackboardlargest Moodle deployment by users are using version 9.1 ofuser-base, with 714,310 users Blackboard… and 6,093 courses.
Which universities use distance learning, e-learning inaddition to face to face (traditional) learning in the UK ? Most UK Universities have some provision for distance learning or e-learning..… These Universities are either part of RDI or have taken part in Government studies in e- learning
Handicaps to e-education The major issue facing e- education in theUK is a disparitybetween city and rural broadband speeds – especially anissue with Skype or large media filesThis also affects mobilesignal, which is poor in rural areas…
What are the efforts to promote e-learning inthe UK?• In March 2005, the Higher Education Funding council for England (HEFCE) developed a 10-year strategy to integrate e-learning into higher education• There is funding for projects in the field of e-learning available from „JISC‟ – JISC inspires UK colleges and universities in the innovative use of digital technologies, helping to maintain the UKs position as a global leader in education.• There are frequent news reports on the rise of distance & e-learning in the national press and educational supplement – especially in light of recent university fee raises in the UK
How prevalent is online learning in the UK?• Study of UK Online Learning  October 2010 identified over 2,600 HE level online and distance learning courses offered by, or on behalf of, UK HE and FE institutions. These included: – 1,528 courses offered by 113 HE and FE institutions; of which 510 were identified as being delivered online (including blended learning); – 952 courses offered by the Open University; of which 600 were dependent on the web and a further 95 were delivered fully online; – 175 courses offered in partnership with commercial partners. – Plus the % of UK educational establishments which provide distance learning to UK businesses as a bespoke package
Some Pros & Cons of online learningPositive Elements Negative Aspects• E-learning can fit around • It can be hard for students to jobs, family and commitments find the time to dedicate fully to courses with other• In most cases there will be a distractions large financial saving for the student, course fees and • It can be very isolating to the relocation fees etc. student, especially if there isnt a well thought out• There can be the freedom to community aspect to the only learn the required, or course vital aspects of a course or qualification – topping up • Tutors may not have the skills or furthering work support or training necessary to help e-learners