VLE segregation or integration? how should distance learning be taught and modes be treated?
Contributor(s)University of Bedfordshire
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Abstractn 2007, the MSc Public Health course at the University of Bedfordshire developed and launched a distance learning mode as an alternative to its existing 'taught' (classroom-based) mode of learning. Part of the rationale for its conception was the growing number of international students registering for the course. Also, a number of overseas governments and employers had been keen to support their staff to undertake the MSc Public Health but were unable to meet the travel and living costs in the UK. Initially, 10 distance learning students registered. Today, the course has 30 distance learning students. With the number of distance learning students likely to continue to grow, and distance learning becoming more prominent within the education sector (Allen and Seaman, 2008), a key issue to address is whether to segregate distance learning students into one, distance-learning exclusive Virtual Learning Environment (VLE)-based community, or to combine both sets of students into one, integrative VLE-based community. In order to explore this issue, this paper will introduce some of the key concepts and then describe how distance learners and taught students currently access and interact with their learning material on the course. It will then critically appraise some of the key pedagogical and practical considerations associated with VLE segregation/integration.
Papadopoulos, C. & Sapsed, S. (2012) 'VLE segregation or integration? how should distance learning and taught modes be treated?', Journal of Pedagogic Development, 2 (2), pp.6-11.
Journal of pedagogic development