Online courses and how they change the nature of class

Scott Reid


This paper presents findings related to how the nature of class changes when asynchronous online courses are used rather than classrooms. The qualitative study involved interviews with 32 university professors who have taught both in-class and online courses. The findings provide insight into how when the medium of teaching changes, there is also significant change in the composition and indeed the very nature of class. Such change occurs as the students attracted have more work experience and groups such as those living in rural areas, older students with work experience or those living outside the province are more likely to be included in the composition of class. Also, the medium itself changed the dynamics of class interactions, not only those between students and professor, but also the interaction between students themselves.


Online courses, technological change, distance education

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