Distance Learning

Introduction

Here you will find a collection of resources specifically designed to support Rider faculty who are engaged in distance learning. First in the list below is the Rider University College of Continuing Studies Faculty Guidelines for Online Teaching. This instructor's manual, written by Marie Cini and Boris Vilic is "filled with real examples of how to plan for the online experience and then how to actually 'behave' as an instructor online" (4). The next documents are a collection of "Best Practices" and "Tips" created by Dr. Judith Boettcher that she has customized for Rider faculty in consultation with Dean Boris Vilic and Drs. Kathy Browne and Tim McGee of the Teaching and Learning Center. If you have any questions about these documents or Rider's other resources to support distance learnning (e.g. the Blackboard sites "Redesign for Online" and the "Distance Learning Template" or the new sandbox tools that support collaborative learning and the use of rich media) contact Tim McGee (tmcgee@rider.edu, ext. 7015) or Heeyoung Kim (hekim@rider.edu), the Coordinator of Distance Learning in the College of Continuing Studies.

Recommended Reading

This next collection of links leads to readings that have been recommended for various reasons. In each case, the link leads either to an external site where the file is hosted or to a downloadable .pdf. The brief annotations are intended to give you some notion of the content of each reading.

  • Course Design Factors Influencing the Success of Online Learning. Abstract: This paper looks at factors affecting the success of asynchronous online learning through an investigation of relationships between student perceptions and course design factors in one of the largest asynchronous learning networks in the country. It finds that three such factors -- consistency in course design, interaction with course instructors, and active discussion – have been consistently shown to significantly influence the success of online courses. It is posited that the reason for these findings relates to the importance of building community in online courses.
  • An Instructional Strategy Framework for Online Learning Environments. The authors advocate that faculty "adopt a philosophy of teaching and learning that is appropriate for online instruction. . . . [that] should build on a combination of learning theories rather than be confined to one preferred perspective" (33).