Handbook of Distance Education

By Michael Grahame Moore; William G. Anderson | Go to book overview

6
A Theory of Distance Education
Based on Empathy
Börje Holmberg
FernUniversität, Germany
boerje.holmberg@strandhusen.se

It is work aiming at a theory of distance education carried out during the last four decades that constitutes the background of this chapter. Before the term distance education became established (when the terms used for this concept were correspondence education, home study, and independent learning), I argued in favor of a conversational approach to course development (Holmberg, 1960, pp. 15–16) and later attempted to formulate a theory of distance education in which empathy between the learner and the teaching organization was assumed to favor learning and to be a decisive desideratum in teaching (Holmberg 1983; 1985; 1991; 1995b; 1997; 2001; Holmberg, Schuemer, & Obermeier 1982; and elsewhere). My attempts paid scant attention to the technological developments that occurred the last few decades of the 20th century. Further, I used a somewhat unfortunate terminology. I referred to the conversational character of distance education as “didactic, ” an adjective in many cases taken to indicate an authoritarian approach (the opposite of what was meant). Instead of guided didactic conversation, I now prefer the term teaching-learning conversation (Holmberg, 1999; Lentell, 1997). In spite of the deficiencies indicated, the gist of the theory remains valid.


WHAT KIND OF THEORY IS POSSIBLE?

If by theory we mean a systematic ordering of ideas about the phenomena of a field of inquiry, as Gage (1963 p. 102) defines it, a theory of distance education is obviously possible. If, on the other hand, the intent is to explain all social, educational, and organizational conditions of distance education, the possibility of identifying and wording such a theory appears remote. It is not much easier to develop a theory that meets Keegan's (1983) criterion—that it should be able to “provide the touchstone against which decisions—political, financial, educational, social— … can be taken with confidence” (p. 3).

-79-

Notes for this page

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items

Items saved from this book

This book has been saved
Highlights (0)
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

Citations (0)
Some of your citations are legacy items.

Any citation created before July 30, 2012 will labeled as a “Cited page.” New citations will be saved as cited passages, pages or articles.

We also added the ability to view new citations from your projects or the book or article where you created them.

Notes (0)
Bookmarks (0)

You have no saved items from this book

Project items include:
  • Saved book/article
  • Highlights
  • Quotes/citations
  • Notes
  • Bookmarks
Notes
Cite this page

Cited page

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited page

Bookmark this page
Handbook of Distance Education
Table of contents

Table of contents

Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this book

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Help
Full screen
/ 872

matching results for page

    Questia reader help

    How to highlight and cite specific passages

    1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
    2. Click or tap the last word you want to select, and you’ll see everything in between get selected.
    3. You’ll then get a menu of options like creating a highlight or a citation from that passage of text.

    OK, got it!

    Cited passage

    Style
    Citations are available only to our active members.
    Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

    1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

    Cited passage

    Thanks for trying Questia!

    Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

    Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

    Buy instant access to save your work.

    Already a member? Log in now.

    Author Advanced search

    Oops!

    An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.