by Dees Stallings // Vision
Vision author Dees Stallings identifies Frederick Taylor?who used a stopwatch in time and motion studies to determine the most efficient way to produce steel in the early 20th century?as "the first great measurer of productivity." According to Stallings, Taylor's general concepts can be used to streamline and control distance education processes, especially those that are standard and/or repetitive. The author cites the evaluation of student writing assignments as an example process; he then describes how instructors can complete this time-consuming task more quickly with the help of technology tools that "improve conditions of working, learning, and cost-effectiveness, all without sacrificing anyone part of this notorious triad to others."
by James L. Morrison and Carol Twigg // Commentary
Carol Twigg alerts us that institutions are grossly underestimating the competitive challenge that they are about to face from other providers, both its magnitude and the pace at which it is developing. Finding new ways to use technology to provide educational services should be at the top of every institution's list. Educational leaders are beginning to pay attention to these issues, but they act like they have decades in which to implement change. That's simply not the case.
by Susana M. Sotillo // Case Studies
Susana M. Sotillo reports on the ways in which computer-mediated communication can enhance the writing skills of nonnative speakers of English. Sotillo's experience and research confirm that collaborative writing between nonnative and native speakers?via e-mail and the Internet in networked classrooms? benefits nonnative speakers, facilitates the growth of their fluency, and prepares them to undertake independent problem solving and learning. Sotillo describes her own technology-enhanced language courses and provides, for readers interested learning more about computer use in English as a Second Language (ESL) studies, a list of links to relevant Web sites.
by James L. Morrison // Featured Products
Professors can take advantage of courseware packages just as they use textbooks, for multimedia learning packages can enhance student learning and can enable faculty members to have more time to do what they do best.
Educom, online home of the organization that is an invaluable resource to educators using technology in their classrooms, features, among other things, a guide to Educom's annual conference, an archive of its publications, specific information about the projects with which it is involved (including the National Learning Infrastructure Initiative and the Networking and Telecommunications Task Force), and a detailed calendar of higher education and technology-related events. Check out this comprehensive site.