Eric Fredericksen: Is Online Education Good or Bad?

Dear Commons Community,

Eric Fredericksen, Associate Professor at the Warner School of Education at the University of Rochester and a long-time colleague of mine from the Online Learning Consortium, had an article in  The Conversation.  Entitled, “Is online education good or bad? And is this really the right question?”, Eric reminds us that both face-to-face and online modalities have something to offer in the way of learning benefits depending upon how well instructional activities are designed and delivered. Poor design or delivery results in poor instructional activity  and vice versa. His conclusion:

“So what’s the future for online classes? My hope is that we continue to evolve different models of online learning. The spirit of “blended” or “hybrid” online courses strives to capture the best of online with the best of traditional classroom experiences.

Ultimately, I believe we will progress and develop instruction to the point where these historically based distinctions and categorical terms will blur and become less meaningful, and we will simply just focus on learning.”

Eric’s assessment is on target.   We are rapidly moving to an “its all just learning” view of instruction regardless of modality.



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