The Theory and Practice of Online Learning, Second Edition
458 pages, 6 x 9
Release Date:01 May 2008

The Theory and Practice of Online Learning, Second Edition

Edited by Terry Anderson
Athabasca University Press

Neither an academic tome nor a prescriptive "how to"guide, The Theory and Practice of Online Learning is anilluminating collection of essays by practitioners and scholars activein the complex field of distance education. Distance education hasevolved significantly in its 150 years of existence.

For most of this time, it was an individual pursuit defined byinfrequent postal communication. But recently, three more developmentalgenerations have emerged, supported by televison and radio,teleconferencing, and computer conferencing. The early 21st century hasproduced a fifth generation, based on autonomous agents andintelligent, database-assisted learning, that has been referred to asWeb 2.0.

The second edition of The Theory and Practice of OnlineLearning features updates in each chapter, plus four new chapterson current distance education issues such as connectivism and socialsoftware innovations.


  • 2009, Winner - Charles A. Wedemeyer Award by the University Continuing Education Association
Terry Anderson is a professor and Canada ResearchChair in Distance Education at Athabasca University. He has publishedextensively in the area of distance education and educationaltechnology.


INTRODUCTION / Terry Anderson

PART I: Role and Function of Theory in Online EducationDevelopment and Delivery

1. Foundations of Educational Theory for Online Learning /Mohamed Ally

2. Towards a Theory of Online Learning / Terry Anderson

3. Situating Prior Learning Assessment and Recognition (PLAR) in anOnline Learning Environment / Dianne Conrad

4. Understanding e-Learning Technologies-in-Practice throughPhilosophies-in-Practice / Heather Kanuka

PART II: Infrastructure and Support for ContentDevelopment

5. Developing an Infrastructure for Online Learning / AlanDavis, Paul Little & Brian Stewart

6. Technologies of Online Learning (E-learning) / Rory McGreal& Michael Elliott

7. Characteristics of Interactive Online Learning Media /Patrick. J. Fahy

8. “In-Your-Pocket” and “On-the-Fly:”Meeting the Needs of Today’s New Generation of Online Learnerswith Mobile Learning Technology / Maureen Hutchison, Tony Tin &Yang Cao

9. Social Software to Support Distance Education Learners /Terry Anderson

PART III: Design and Development of OnlineCourses

10. The Development of Online Courses / Dean Caplan & RodgerGraham

11. Value Added – The Editor in Design and Development ofOnline Courses / Jan Thiessen & Vincent Ambrock

12. Making Relevant Financial Decisions about Technology inEducation / David Annand

13. The Quality Dilemma in Online Education Revisited / Nancy K.Parker

PART IV: Delivery, Quality Control, and Student Support ofOnline Courses

14. Teaching in an Online Learning Context / TerryAnderson

15. Call Centres in Distance Education / Alex Z. Kondra, ColleenHuber, Kerri Michalczuk & Andrew Woudstra

16. Library Support for e-Learners: e-Resources, e-Services, and theHuman Factors / Kay Johnson, Houda Trabelsi & ElaineFabbro

17. Supporting the Online Learner / Susan D. Moisey & JudithA. Hughes

18. Developing Team Skills and Accomplishing Team Projects Online /Deborah Hurst & Janice Thomas

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