Putting the learning into e-learning

Middleton, Dave (2010). Putting the learning into e-learning. European Political Science, 9(1) pp. 5–12.

DOI: https://doi.org/10.1057/eps.2009.37

URL: http://www.ingentaconnect.com/content/pal/eps/2010...


There has been an increase in the use of e-learning as a form of delivering higher education. Much of the innovation has been carried out in what has been called an ‘evaluation bypass’ and has seemingly been popular because of its economic efficiency. The literature on new technologies tends to be written by those committed to the innovation. They tend to present innovation as a good, regardless of what the innovation is, and ‘resistors’ as in some senses deviant. Using the example of the HEFCE funded multimedia project ‘Doing Political Research’ this paper argues that some degree of scepticism about new innovation can be seen as a positive response. Furthermore the paper argues that the cost saving arguments put forward by proponents of innovation are illusory. E-learning can be as costly as other means. However, it does offer alternative ways to teach and can be particularly effective at reaching isolated learners. The conclusion is that for e-learning to be effective it must place learning first.

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