The Internet is 20 years old in Australia and a senior Charles Sturt University (CSU) education researcher hails its introduction as one which has opened up the world to learners and teachers.
Director of Charles Sturt University’s (CSU) Flexible Learning Institute, Professor Mike Keppell, believes the internet has enhanced people’s ability to learn by encouraging communication via email and other forms of media.
“People can express themselves as individuals using such applications as Facebook, Flickr and YouTube,” Professor Keppell said.
“The education experience has also been enriched as teachers have access to a rich range of resources to download and use in their own classroom.”
Professor Keppell is also enthusiastic about the improved access to educational opportunities for students, where many no longer need to attend lectures and tutorials on campus to study.
“The Internet allows more mobile learning; students can interact in their learning from home or work or an internet café, wherever they can access the online environment,” he said.
“Student can also interact with each other and their tutors as they can upload their work to allow others to see and comment on it. It has truly widened the world of learning.”
Professor Keppell coordinated the CSUED 2009 conference on effective learning for professional education. Around 150 CSU academic staff gathered at CSU at Albury-Wodonga for three days last week to put their leadership in tertiary learning and teaching on display.
With the theme Learning and leading in higher education, Charles Sturt University staff are sharing their work in university teaching and learning, especially as they continue to develop blended and flexible learning programs for educating the professions.
CSU’s Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Academic), Professor Ross Chambers, said the University has made very good use of the Internet to strengthen its leadership in distance education and service to students.
“The next generation of the Internet has even greater potential for education, including access to university education for rural and regional communities across Australia,” Professor Chambers said.