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e-Learning is not an option

A few weeks ago I posted a quote by David Warlick who suggested that e-learning is not an optional approach to education and in fact has little to do with good teaching (Digital kids / Analogue schools). He points out that it’s merely a tool that’ll be used with varying degrees of success, which will be dependant on the quality of the teacher, not the tool.

This idea that e-learning is happening whether we like it or not, was highlighted to me the other day when I received a letter regarding a conference taking place in Israel that will look at the management of higher education institutions. The author, Dr. Joseph Shevel writes:

“This shift from reading books to e-learning isn’t optional; it doesn’t depend upon the assessment of educational experts as to whether it is good or bad. It doesn’t depend on whether these institutions are ready for such dramatic change. Regardless of whether they have the money, the infrastructure, the staff, the skills – or most significantly – the online content – digital delivery is now a reality of every classroom…”

Dr. Shevel goes on to say that “e-learning is here to stay, it will increasingly become a vital item in the training plan, there is a growing need for experts in designing digital teaching and learning, and in response, we must learn how and when to use it to it’s and our best advantage”.

The question is not whether e-learning works because e-learning is already happening. Our students are using this new methodology in the way they work, socialise and communicate, right now. The question is: “What are we going to do about it?”