Description of Online Education

Description of Online Education

In recent years Education has changed significantly. The focus has shifted from the teacher to the student. The teacher has had to change from the "sage on the stage", distributing gems of wisdom, to becoming the guide on the side, coming alongside the learner to partner with them to discover knowledge together. Of course the real power comes when the teacher and learner join together to work with the Holy Spirit to change lives and extend the Kingdom.

Empowered by the amazing advances with IT and the changing livestyles of the learners, there has been an increasing demand for learning and teaching to be delivered flexibly. i.e the learner can manage their own time and space. By using such electronic tools, as the world wide web, internet chat, and most recently the live elearning virtual classroom, the face to face experience is able to be greatly enhanced and strengthed as lifelong learning.

Of course there are great advantages to distance learning, since the learning and teaching can be provided anywhere you can get an internet connection, and due to various tools that allow communication, interaction between students can be improved. Also immediate feedback can also be provided. However the real power of Online Education is when it is blended with traditional methods and new instructional methods and approaches are used to engage learners, build learning communities and push the learner into higher order thinking. Under the guidance of the Holy Spirit this is the realm of creativity and innovation.

Online Education holds some important keys to the acceleration of the fulfilment of the Great Commission mandate of Matt 28 ... making disciples of all Nations. The Church has before it one of the most important communication and education revolutions in human history and the challenge is how quickly can we take it up?

How is Online Education used in Missions?

Missions are still trying out the technology but the following are all possible:

Issues with Online Education

It is easy to convert correspondence courses to online without properly taking advantage of the benefits of online education.

Different implementations and solutions using Online Education

NorthStar Academy "is a private Christian online school offering programs of study based on the USA, Canadian and UK curriculum models". It uses Moodle, a free Open Source course management system.

Moodle is being used by the Open University of the UK for their 200,000 users. appears to be a ministry to bring Christian distance education and mission opportunities to developing world children, street children and orphans. Interesting idea.


Original page:
from the MissionTech Wiki created by the International Conference on Computers and Missions

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