Distributed Learning: Learning From a Distance

Distributed learning, otherwise known as distance learning is for learning when being present is not an option. It’s a form of multi-access learning that creates a more flexible learning environment to suit the needs of more students. For example, students with anxiety and health issues, or those living in rural areas may be unable to attend classes face to face. If the teacher has a closed modality in their classroom it becomes harder to keep up with class work.

Here’s telepresence robot, a great alternative for learning at a distance. Not only can the student video in but also move around and communicate with his surroundings.

Permission obtained from patron(s) in photo

Personally, I never experienced distributed learning until coming to UVIC. In my entire time from kindergarten to grade 12 there was never the opportunity to participate in the learning environment unless I was present. This was a closed system where everything that happened was within the walls of the school. It all changed when I came to university. A new way of connected learning was established for me to learn through. Platforms like Coursespaces allowed for a connection between class and home. I could receive assignments, complete, and submit them anywhere in the world as long as I had internet access. Another way this platform establishes class learning abroad is through blog posts. They allow for an online class discussion at a distance. I think distributed learning is ideal in this new age of technology. Every student has access to some form of technology and can utilize it beyond the walls of the class. It makes it possible to conference in to important lectures if away or sick, or unable to attend for any reason. It expands the possibilities of learning and allows for so much more flexibility to reach students that were never able to be reached before. When I was going through school teaching was classroom based. Even if resources were used online they did not translate into the world outside of the classroom. Everything was done face to face and it was hard to miss school for any reason. I think if teachers decided to strictly use face to face modality in the classroom and don’t post anything online, it makes it hard to access resources on what’s been missed. This modality is less inclusive and flexible and, as a result, some students would be unable to complete the requirements.

Distributed learning increases numbers in schools, while also meeting the needs of students. I think with the technological shift we are seeing in society it only makes sense to integrate it into the classroom. This shift in modality reaches more students and creates more avenues for success in a variety of situations that will continue to happen to students in the school system. Now place-based limitations are no longer a barrier, whether family obligations, travel, health issues, or other reasons. Students can receive the flexibility they require to receive a good education.

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Week 3 Blog: Video

This weeks class was very productive and informative. The first half was a conference call with Ian Landy in Powell River pertaining to the shift from traditional report cards to E-Portfolios. This formative assessment is important because students can be excited about the work they show knowing that their grades are based upon the great things that they have done in the different subjects. This form of assessment allows for flexibility in the learning for students to enjoy the process and engage in personalized assignments. I think E-portfolios are fantastic because all students have different assets that are shown in different ways and these portfolios allow them to be graded on things that portray those unique assets. I think the old system with report cards is very limiting by having every assignment have a letter grade. There is no additional information given and students feel stuck with grades that they get on every assignment. I like the idea that with an E-portfolio you can delete items, it is an ever-changing grade based on the learners development. It showcases the best of every student.

Ian Landy has some really amazing blog posts that are diverse and very informative and enriching. Here is his wordpress: https://technolandy.wordpress.com

Licensed by Creative Commons

The second half focused on developing our video and audio editing skills. I had used iMovie before and thought I had known all the editing tricks. I was thoroughly happy to find that there were new editing skills I had yet to develop! Just goes to prove that every one always has more they can learn. When using GarageBand to create an audio track I was completely confused. I could not find where the instruments were and did not know how to play the instruments electronically. However, with time I figured things out and was able to piece together a small song. I found the process of making a song from scratch to be quite difficult. I did not know where to go from a certain point and for that reason the song is not very cohesive. This was a learning experience that I would love to explore in my spare time. I think this app is a really impressive tool for creating music and should be explored!

Here is the link to the video I edited: (Password: Education)