Chapter 7. Pedagogical Issues in Online Education
This chapter discusses pedagogical issues related to course design, tutoring, accreditation and
assessment. Finally, it presents an analysis of enrollment progress and flexibility.
Course Design and Development
Some institutions have course development teams, others use the tutor as the sole designer of
a course as indicated in the statement below. The different models probably have implications
for both quality control and development time.
<73> Human tutoring provided by the tutor. The tutor is responsible for the content
Additional statements that elucidate course design are listed below:
<58> NKI Nettskolen adhere to a model in which elements of tutoring are build into the
web based study guide. This means that detailed explanation, many examples, self tests,
model answers etc. are included in the study guides. In addition, communication with a
personal tutor and access to peer students are important elements of student tutoring.
<57> We have worked closely with the university staff in designing the system. The basic
principle is that what you can do on campus you can do on the web. There are lecturers for
each unit who organize the students both as a class by bulletin board and also in small
clusters for projects. There are a range of CMC debates and role plays and other activities.
The e mail list groups the whole class of 50.
<8> We are developing tutoring systems and using hyperlinks to other web sites and
between students, captioned have you seen this? .
<37> Beside the open courses all courses have different kinds of tutoring.
Course materials include assignments. Learners send their results to a tutor and receive
In some courses chats with tutors or experts are offered.
Course materials also include tasks for small learner groups (private newsgroups up to
8 learners). These learner groups are moderated by a tutor. Learners send the results of
their group work in a plenary (newsgroup) where it is discussed with other learners.
Some courses include a project task with up to 8 learners working together in a project
group. For this kind of collaboration a CSCW platform (BSCW) is offered.
The CISAER interviews included a question about the type of student tutoring. From the
answers, this chapter indicates who the tutors are and what they do. It also elucidate the use of
machine tutoring, individual tutoring, and group tutoring.
Who Are the Tutors?
The tutors seem to be both part time teachers that are engaged just for the online courses and
full time teachers that also teach some online courses. It is also interesting to observe that
distributed experts and students could take part in the tutoring.