Introduction

Distance education means instruction in which the instructor and student are
separated by distance and interact through the assistance of communication
technology. Web-based instruction has grown the most among distance learning modalities since the 1990's.

A DE course/section or session is defined as the use of technology utilized 51 percent
or more of the time to deliver instruction during the course term and where the student
and instructor are separated by distance. The delivery of instruction in the DE modality
can include the use of one or a number of technologies. As an example, an instructor
can use the Internet, email video and class lecture to deliver instruction (hybrid course).
However, if the use of the combined mediated technology is 50 percent or less, or the
student and instructor are not separated by distance, the course/section/session is
considered a classroom-based traditional course/section/ session.

The same standards of course quality are applied to distance education
as are applied to traditional classroom courses. All courses offered as distance education include regular effective contact between instructor and students. The type of technology used to facilitate contact can vary depending on how the instructor sets up their course. Regulations stress the responsibility of the instructor in a DE course to initiate
regular contact with enrolled students to verify their participation and performance
status. The use of the term “regular effective contact” in this context suggests that
students should have frequent opportunities to ask questions and receive answers from
the instructor of record.

DE @ Cabrillo

What steps do you need to take to get started?

  1. Make sure your course has been approved by your department/division for distance delivery. The Chancellor's Office definition of distance education is a course that is taught online 51% or more of the time.
  2. As soon as your course is approved by your department/division, begin the curriculum process. The Curriculum Handbook is online. Courses that are to be offered in a Distance-Learning Format should include the sentence, "May be offered in a Distance-Learning Format" as the last sentence of the description.
    1. Complete the areas of Curricunet that require degree information, methods of instruction, frequency of contact with students, and mode of delivery.
    2. Your course MUST meet Section 508 Standards for Disabilities; see Creating Accessible Web Pages
  3. Make an appointment with the Teaching & Learning Center (TLC) to learn about technologies available for delivery of distance courses
  4. Read A Fieldbook for Community Colleges, Online Instructors by Kent Farnsworth and Teresa Brawner Bevis. It is on reserve in the Cabrillo Library and available in the TLC.
  5. Introduce yourself to other distance educators on campus, come to a Distance Education Committee meeting, or consult with the Teaching & Learning Center. They have connections to DE faculty at colleges across the state in almost every discipline. Get on the Cabrillo DE mailing list.
  6. Contact your textbook publisher to see what types of online resources are already available.

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