Summary of “The Origins of Distance Education and its uses in the United States”

Distance education is becoming or has become an integral part of the education system in the United States.  More and more students are utilizing distance education as a means of getting an education and fulfilling their degrees.  The growth of distance education in the United States is increasing exponentially.  By 1995 colleges and universities were offering students the opportunities, to complete their degrees, using distance education instead of traditional classroom instruction.  As the different types of media available to deliver classes increases, the methods of distance education are improving.  There is also a shift in the types of students who are taking distance education classes.  Typically distance education students are part-time adult learner or students who are trying to work full-time while attending school.  As of the fall of 1998 a second student population emerged, students who are enrolled in regular classes but are supplementing their education with the distance education courses.  Information technology is going to continue to grow and evolve and therefor how colleges and universities deliver their courses will shift.  As partnerships between colleges and universities, businesses, states and countries form, distance education opportunities will continue to grow.

Even working in an educational setting at a community and technical college we rely on and utilize technology on a daily basis.  The college offers just as many classes online or via ITV as it does in a traditional face-to-face setting.  The institution is spread out over 200 square miles and traveling for meetings all the time is not necessarily feasible.  Utilizing technologies such as ITV, Adobe Connect and Webex allow us to conduct business in real time without having to leave the office.

Matthews, D. (1999). The origins of distance education and its uses in the united states. the Journal, Retrieved from


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One response to “Summary of “The Origins of Distance Education and its uses in the United States”

  1. It is great what technology can allow us to do! Great to have meeting via skype and other ITV type programs you mentioned above. I have found google docs extremely valuable for group projects with my students because it allows students to collaborate and all work at the same time. The students also enjoyed working with google docs because they could all work on it at the same time and could work from home if they had internet connection.

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