Distance Learning

Help Center Distance Learning

Creating a distance learning course involves more than replicating familiar classroom strategies in a different forum. Distance education requires the facilitation of an online community and activities designed for students working individually. Because the dynamics of teaching and learning at a distance are unique, Catalyst and UW Online Learning have developed the following resources to guide you through the steps of designing, developing, and teaching a successful distance learning course.

Understanding distance education

The distance learning environment is significantly different from the traditional classroom environment. If you are used to teaching in the classroom, you may find it necessary to adapt some of your teaching strategies to better meet the demands of this new environment. This document will help you think through some of the ways in which the distance education environment may change your teaching.

Planning a distance learning course

One of the ways in which distance education differs from classroom instruction is that all of the material that you wish to deliver in the course must be prepared prior to the beginning of the course. Teaching a distance learning course requires a large amount of planning. This document walks you through the process of planning a distance learning course and includes links to pages on distance learning technologies.

Teaching a distance learning course

Interaction between instructors and students changes dramatically in a distance learning environment. Instructors accustomed to the classroom learning environment may find that they need to revise their teaching methods and materials in response to this changed teaching context. This guide provides tips for teaching effectively in a distance learning course.

Assessing a distance learning course

Evaluation and assessment are important parts of any class, but in distance learning they are complicated by the lack of face-to-face interaction between instructors and students. These pages include information on evaluating the effectiveness of your class at a distance.

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