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Paper w78-2001-14:
Distance learning in engineering and construction education: pros and cons

Facilitated by the SciX project

Martin J W, Haque M E

Distance learning in engineering and construction education: pros and cons

Abstract: Distance education has rapidly emerged as a new avenue for teaching and learning in the engineering and construction disciplines. Much has been written about the benefit and the downside of distance education. Many stakeholders in the construction and engineering fields remain sceptical about the validity of distance education. In spite of this scepticism the American Council of Education estimated that 85 percent of traditional colleges and universities offered, or soon would offer distance accessible classes. China alone produces more than 100,000 graduates, with more than half of China’s 92,000 engineering and technology graduates having attained their degrees through distance education. A universal model for distance education in engineering and construction would include answers to questions about the reliability and validity of the distance curriculum. The virtual engineering and construction classroom will become much more student centred. The traditional classroom will likely be replaced with a more intimate virtual environment. The student centred distance learning archetype will include dynamic demonstrations of theoretical engineering and construction models allowing students to manipulate, experiment, and translate theories into real-world applications. The distance education curriculum in engineering and construction will likely include the creative use of virtual technologies, theoretical adaptation, and the incorporation of comprehensive evaluation of student performance. Distance education in engineering and construction in the future must provide an element of comprehensive student evaluation to be universally valued and accepted.



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Series: w78:2001 (browse)
Cluster: papers of the same cluster (result of machine made clusters)
Class: class.education (0.108034) class.deployment (0.038926) class.software development (0.006953)
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Permission to reproduce these documents have been graciously provided by CSIR Building and Construction Technology. The assistance of the editors, Mr. Gustav Coetzee and Mr. Frances Boshoff, is gratefully appreciated.


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