Authors: Bengt Olsen
Addresses: Associate Professor, Managing Director of KOMunity Software, Sveavagen 114, 113 50 Stockholm, Sweden
Abstract: The development of human communication in the information age is discussed. The definition of, and need for, distance learning is described and reasons given for participating in distance education. First, second and third generations of distance education are distinguished. The requirements of distance education are examined from technical, organisational and pedagogical points of view. The effects and superiority of the third-generation distance education are made plausible. Many examples of successful applications of PortaCOM to distance education are mentioned. The role of groupware in team work, and various groupware options, are illustrated. A system for the future, built on cooperation technology and multimedia applications, will constitute the fourth-generation distance education. This will give a very useful support for remote group learning. The future looks very bright.
Keywords: virtual classroom; computer conferencing; distance learning; groupware; PortaCOM; CMC; teamwork; multimedia; client-server; distance education; communication; remote learning; group learning.
International Journal of Continuing Engineering Education and Life-Long Learning, 1992 Vol.2 No.2/3/4, pp.90 - 104
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