Dr. George Siemens discussed how global diversity, communication, and collaborative interaction have all contributed to the growing acceptance of distance education in today's society - corporately and educationally. I particularly want to focus on collaborative interaction. Coming from an education background, sometimes it is hard for me to relate to how distance education has vastly improved collaborating. This is something that I have always had to participate in my face-to-face classes and have been pushed to incorporate into my own classroom so it is not a foreign concept.
However, online tools have provided us the ability to collaborate without always being near one another, which is a major convenience. We are now able to share ideas asynchronously and synchronously. Micah, high school teacher and adjunct professor, (http://minerclass.edublogs.org/2010/12/31/collaborative-interaction-in-distance-education%E2%80%A6/) is a proponent for the use of the wiki as a way to further create a culture of collaboration, a skill learners will need in order to survive in global competition. Maria Dolores (http://mariadoloresjardim.blogspot.com/2011/03/collaborative-interaction.html) also believes that collaborative interaction is important to distance education. Like Micah, she mentions the use of wikis but also Google docs, video-and web- conferencing. These tools help to keeps us connected 24 hours a day, 7 days a week with our colleagues and fellow learners. With face-to-face education, you only have the set times that you agree to meet to share your ideas. Online tools help to alleviate that disconnect.
Laureate Education, Inc. (Producer). (2008). (n.d.). The future of distance education. [Video Production]. Available from https://class.waldenu.edu/webapps/portal/frameset.jsp?tab_tab_group_id=_2_1&url=%2Fwebapps%2Fblackboard%2Fexecute%2Flauncher%3Ftype%3DCourse%26id%3D_968211_1%26url%3D
Dolores, M. (2011, March 30). Collaborative interaction. [Web log comment]. Retrieved from http://mariadoloresjardim.blogspot.com/2011/03/collaborative-interaction.html
Minerclass. (2011, December 31). Collaborative interaction in distance education. [Web log comment]. Retrieved from http://minerclass.edublogs.org/2010/12/31/collaborative-interaction-in-distance-education%E2%80%A6/