Distance education technologies : a classification and evaluation
We are at a point in the history of higher education in South Africa when radical changes are occurring in instructional delivery system models. Of increasing significance is a mixed mode of traditional and distance delivery (i.e. Telematic Learning Systems at the PU for CHE). In this changing environment, language lecturers, the persons responsible for developing language modules within various Telematic programmes, remain a key element in the teaching and learning process. However, these lecturers are suddenly expected to make appropriate decisions in terms of distance education technology classification, evaluation, and consequent selection without the necessary knowledge and/or capacity to make effective technological decisions. The purpose of this article is to assist "Lone Ranger" language lecturers, in making pedagogically sound decisions when classifying, evaluating and selecting distance education technologies by: (a) considering technology selection as part of the instructional design process, (b) referring to some reasons for using technology for language learning, (c) focusing on criteria for classifying and evaluating distance education technologies, and by (d) reviewing selected studies in order to indicate the application possibilities of technologies for language teaching and learning.
- Humanities