Module 1: Online vs. Face-to-Face Instruction
In this section, we’ll take a look at both sides
of the argument for and against online learning, we’ll look at
some of the major differences between online and face-to-face courses,
and look at qualities of a good online course. At frequent points throughout
the module, you’ll be directed to an external Internet link for
examination of a specific topic or viewpoint. A separate browser window
will open so you may explore the suggested resource and then return
to the module content when you close the browser window.
Key Differences Between Online and Face-to-Face Teaching takes a practical look at the two different learning environments and the advantages and problems inherent in each. This is a great overview from the North Carolina Community College System’s Principles and Techniques of Online Instruction that points out important issues to consider. (You’ll view the document using Adobe Reader. If you don’t have Reader, you can download it for free at http://www.adobe.com/products/acrobat/readstep2.html)
The teaching techniques and tools available to you for delivery of an online course are somewhat different than those you use in a face-to-face course. Review the American Society of Mechanical Engineer’s Asynchronous Learning Pedagogy and Methods table for a comparison of teaching techniques used in a live classroom and those used in an online course:
Is Online Teaching for Me? If this is a question you’ve asked yourself, try the self-evaluation quiz from UCLA Extension’s Online Learning network. It allows you to evaluate your computer skills, experience with online learning environments, attitudes toward online teaching, teaching styles and habits, and available time, to determine if teaching online is right for you. Spend a few minutes taking the quiz.
Let’s further explore the differences between online and face-to-face instruction in the Readings section of Module 1.