Monday, April 26, 2010

De Hub: An Australian Department of Education, Employment and workforce relationships project (Belinda Tynan & Mark Brown)

Cuban schoolchildren in a classroom in the pro...Image via Wikipedia
This presentation by Belinda Tynan and Mark Brown was looking at the Distance Education Hub that has been funded by the Department of Education, Employment and Workplace Relations. The idea was to bring academics together to be collaborative and cooperative, while allowing people to be distinctive, and also recognising that a lot of academic institutions are competitors.

Distance learning was defined as instructors and learners working together while they are physically separate. The vision was to have accessible quality higher education/tertiary anytime, anywhere and anyhow. Hand in hand with this was their mission which was to lead research, development and practice in distance education.

By pulling together academics into a community the idea is to aggregate research, bring together scholarship, pool knowledge, build relationships, demonstrate collaboration, and create a research agenda on the international scene.

The community has an active presence on Wiki educator, as well as a range of links on Delicious around the spirit of sharing, constructing and disseminating teaching, research and evaluation. A database around distance education is also being developed which compiles international indices and journals.

The final part of the session involved an interactive exercise where participants shared ideas around what the research question would be in distance education that they believed we all want to know more about. After much swapping, discussion, and giving points, the question ideas were shared. It was a fun and interesting conclsion to the session.
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