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Distance Education as sociomaterial assemblage: place, distribution and aggregation

Gunter, Ashley; Raghuram, Parvati; Breines, Markus and Prinsloo, Paul (2019). Distance Education as sociomaterial assemblage: place, distribution and aggregation. Population, Space and Place (In Press).

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Abstract

The expansion of Distance Education universities and the growth of technology enabled learning is reshaping the boundaries of universities. Distance education provides affordable education to thousands of students both domestically and internationally, but the quality and nature of these connections and the materialities that embed them are often taken for granted. Yet, these connections require work – as they are unstable. Through a case study on students at the University of South Africa this paper conceptualises the distance education university as an assemblage which distributes materials to students globally but must also aggregate to provide services, both online and offline. The students experience of distance education is not bound to a physical university campus but this does not make study seamless or placeless. Rather studying draws in places unequally based on the access students have to the material infrastructures required for study. In exploring distance education this paper points to the sociomaterialities which are going to be ascendant in the context of increasing technological shifts in higher education.

Item Type: Journal Item
ISSN: 1544-8444
Project Funding Details:
Funded Project NameProject IDFunding Body
Facilitating equitable access and quality education for development: South African International Distance EducationES/P002161/1ESRC Economic and Social Research Council
Keywords: Distance Education; Higher Education; Sociomaterialities; South Africa, assemblage, international students
Academic Unit/School: Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences (FASS) > Social Sciences and Global Studies > Geography
Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences (FASS) > Social Sciences and Global Studies
Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences (FASS)
Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences (FASS) > Social Sciences and Global Studies > Sociology
Item ID: 62099
Depositing User: Markus Breines
Date Deposited: 21 Jun 2019 14:24
Last Modified: 08 Aug 2019 17:00
URI: http://oro.open.ac.uk/id/eprint/62099
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