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Instructor Interactions in Distance Education Environments: A Case Study


Annual Distance Education Conference,


The instructional design interactions, practices, and strategies used by three selected instructors teaching distance education courses at Texas A&M University were examined in a case study. Data were collected through unstructured interviews, participant observations, and examination of course documents. The three instructors were selected so that the sample would meet the following criteria: all instructors were tenured or tenured-track faculty with previous experience delivering distance education; each instructor represented a different department; all instructors used varying instructional delivery technologies; and all instructors used synchronous and asynchronous forms of interaction in their courses. The instructors' approaches varied and were shaped by their previous professional experience with distance learning and distance delivery technology. Instructor A used a Web- and videoconferencing-based instructional delivery system and met with students in a 3-day face-to-face field trip. Instructor B used a videoconferencing-based delivery system and conducted a 3-hour face-to-face summative meeting. Instructor C used a Web-based delivery system and held a 6-hour face-to-face orientation meeting. It was concluded that if instructors are to be successful distance educators, they must be capable of using at least the following types of interaction: instructor-learner; instructor-content; instructor-technology; instructor-facilitator; instructor-peers; instructor-support staff/technicians; and instruction-institution. (Contains 28 references.) (MN)


Mortera-Gutierrez, F. & Murphy, K. (2000). Instructor Interactions in Distance Education Environments: A Case Study. Presented at Annual Distance Education Conference 2000. Retrieved November 18, 2019 from .

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