Distance Education Vs. Classroom Education: Thesis

Excerpt from Thesis :

391). This, Vindovich (2002) both acknowledges the difference between traditional and distance education and validates this type of education as having the same academics as traditional education.

Although studying distance education in terms of quality and quality comparison with classroom education is valid, another approach to determining whether distance education is of the same quality as classroom education is up to the students. Programs and teachers can influence school quality, but students' efforts can largely impact education quality as well. This is what researchers Lawless and Richardson (2002) found when they determined that "approaches to studying in distance education are strongly associated with students' perception of the academic quality of their courses" (p. 257). In other words, the researchers found that the quality of distance education was not measured by some arbitrary method, but by the students' own effort. Furthermore, Richardon and Woodley (2001) examined deaf students' studying in distance learning, and found that the students were able to obtain higher scores in some areas associated with learning than their hearing counterparts. Thus, not only does distance education rely on the students for quality assurance, but also caters to different kinds of students in the same way, or a better way, than traditional classroom education.

The results of these studies make several implications about the comparison between distance education and traditional education. First, they suggest that profound differences between the two exist, so they must be evaluated separately. Second, they find that, in certain situations, each method of education has been best. Finally, they imply that the characteristics of the students are important in determining the quality of distance education. Based on these findings, scholars must fill in the holes by conducting studies that include technology and students as variables. They must ask themselves the following questions: What students can benefit from distance education over tradition and vice versa? What impact does technology have on the comparison of distance and traditional education? By answering these questions, they will significantly add to the debate regarding the quality of classroom and distance education.


Abrami et al. (2004). How Does Distance Education Correlate With Classroom

Instruction? A Meta-Analysis of the Empirical Literature. Review of Educational Research. 74(3), 379-439.

Lawless, Clive J. And Richardson, John T.E. (2002). Approaches to studying perceptions of academic quality in distance education. Higher Education. 44, 257-282.

Richardson, John T.E. And Woodley, Alan. (2001). Approaches to studying and communication preferences of deaf students in distance education. Higher Education. 42, 61-83.

Stella, Antony and Gnanam, a. (2004). Quality Assurance in Distance Education: The Changes to be Addressed.…

Sources Used in Document:

references of deaf students in distance education. Higher Education. 42, 61-83.

Stella, Antony and Gnanam, a. (2004). Quality Assurance in Distance Education: The Changes to be Addressed. Higher Education. 47(2), 143-160.

Vindovich, Lesley (2002). Quality assurance in Australian Higher Education:

Globalisation and 'steering at a distance.' Higher Education. 43, 391-408.

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