Characteristics of interactive online media
Fahy, Patrick J.
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This chapter describes technologies used to overcome distance in online learning. Online learning media are tools for cooperation, collaboration, and communication. These devices allow for provision of individual amounts of teaching presence, structure, learning and technology support, orientation to new roles and processes, and interaction (dialogue) with the tutor and others. Multimedia principles applicable to online pedagogy are described, as are the specific characteristics of individual media-based tools. Developments such as new intranets, inexpensive and more robust hardware, and open-source and social-collaborative tools are discussed. The chapter concludes that distance educators should monitor technological trends in society, as such trends tend to translate rapidly from the culture to the (virtual) classroom.