I believe Otto Peters’ industrial model is a valid framework for the development and creation of distance education. Although it is heavily criticized for not being more focused on industrial applications (Garrison, 2000; McIsaac & Gunawardena, 2004). Terms such economies of scale and mass productions are prevalent in today’s distance education. I can’t help but think about the many for-profit institutions who really take Otto Peters’ model in full force. In this setting education is laid out similar to a factory in order maximize ROI and at the end of the day, we see a large disparity in the quality of education. On the other hand we see great value in applying industrial concepts to education. As cost of living goes up and inflation kicks in, it is vital for an institution to maximize efficiency in order to deliver up-to-date and quality education to students. As new tools and resources are being developed from technological advancement, we see that a better environment for asynchronous learning is being established; one that makes it feasible to have a constructivist model in the realm of distance education.

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Reference

Garrison, R. (2000). Theoretical Challenges for Distance Education in the 21st Century: A Shift from Structural to Transactional Issues. The International Review Of Research In Open And Distance Learning, 1(1). Retrieved from http://www.irrodl.org/index.php/irrodl/article/view/2/333

written by Dr Jeff Bordes