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A 5 Year Retrospective on the Growth in Online Learning

English: Diagram of technology-empowered profe...
English: Diagram of technology-empowered professional development for teachers. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

This report, even though it came out a wee while ago, may still be of interest to you (recommended by John S Oliver).

It is from a USA-based study (but the trends are fairly generalisable) that analyses and reports key findings from 416,758 K-12 students, parents, teachers and administrators.

The Speak Up team explain that by "comparing the issues we reported on in 2007 with the online learning headlines of 2012 we can easily see an increased experiential sophistication around different implementations of online learning as well as a new blending of emerging technologies such as mobile learning and digital textbooks into our online learning discussion" (source).

Key trends highlighted by the Speak up team from the report include (source):
  • A majority of teachers, school site administrators and district level administrators now report participating in an online class for their own professional development. For teachers, this represents a 148 percent increase since 2007.
  • Teachers’ value proposition on online learning for their own professional development is directly related to their previous online learning experiences as a teacher or in an online training class. 30 percent of teachers say that online PD is now their preferred approach for continuing education.
  • A new, positive correlation exists between educators’ experiences with online learning and their interest in mobile learning in school.
  • The profile of a typical student interested in taking an online class today is a middle school girl who values the use of a mobile device in school and sees online learning as her ticket to a more personalized learning environment where she is in control of the learning process.
  • One-third of parents now support increased investments in online learning.

What are your thoughts and experiences? Do any of these trends or correlations resonate?

You can download a free copy of this report via these links.

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