Electronic Distance Education

Essay by Anonymous UserUniversity, Bachelor'sA-, November 1996

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Correspondence school, through mail and telephone, has long been an alternative to the regular school system . It is very popular among professionals and students who wish to receive education while they are working outside of schools. As an alternative, distance education will appeal to particular students but has never been a replacement for in-class schooling because of the some deficiencies. For example, it is hard for students to ask questions on complicated matters and receive lengthy solutions by talking to instructors by telephone or mail. Also, it is impossible for a student to interact with other students in the courses. With the above difficulties, distance education cannot become a main stream way of education, even though it does offer the benefit of having a flexible schedule of studying.

In recent years, a new electronic media, namely the internet, has gained significant momentum. Although the network for the internet has existed since the fifties (Frank on-line), it was only accessible to people in military and academic circles until recently.

'Internet' is a general term for the electronic networks which connect computers around the world. There are several tools that simplify the network and provide the means of communication over the net. These widely-used tools include the 'World-Wide-Web,' 'Newsgroups,' and 'Electronic Mail.'

World-Wide-Web (WWW), to give a simplified description, is an effective way of making information available to the general public. The information is formatted into web documents and 'put on the web,' and then users from around the world can use a 'web browser' (a computer program that displays the web documents) to view web documents. The WWW is also a recent development which did not start until the early nineties (Cailliau on-line).

A Newsgroup is a collection of discussion groups that serve as places to 'go' for...