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300 Years of Distance Learning

Distance learning infographic

(Click to view larger)

With the rapid advancement of the Internet, distance learning is becoming more popular, and more accessible, than ever. Even big-name institutions like Harvard are increasing their offerings of online-only instruction.

Distance learning has been around for at least three centuries, as this infographic suggests, from humble beginnings to its modern delivery today.

Old-fashioned correspondence courses at one time gave way to studies aided by radio, television, the Internet, and now mobile applications.

This graphic follows its evolution from 1700’s America, through the War Years and on to The Open University and new online distance learning environments like Moodle.

What will the future hold? Would you take an online-only degree? Or will distance learning always fall short?

Comments

  1. […] is that they have evolved with the times.  If you compare the timeline for the infographic at http://newswatch.nationalgeographic.com/2012/02/23/300-years-of-distance-learning/ with the progression of DAU, I think you will find a very parallel path.  […]

  2. IDE Academy
    Ukraine
    January 13, 6:32 am
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  5. Emma Tameside
    July 2, 2012, 6:37 am

    Hi Brian, thanks for sharing this, it’s a fantastic infographic. I had no idea distance learnined could be traced back to far! I’ll bet it’s possible to find some examples even further back that 1700 if you look at other forms of distance learning too.

    I also love the fact that the internet has revolutionarised the way we access learning materials now. I can find professional lectures about any topic just on YouTube, as well as presentations on Scribd and podcasts on iTunes. Learning isn’t just about lectures and note-taking any more, a lot of online degrees are complimented with audio commentaries you can listen to on your MP3 player, videos of lab experiments, interactive whiteboards and webinar sessions where the whole class can interact online in a managed environment. It just blows my mind thinking about how far we’ve come with education!

  6. Help Training Courses
    UK
    June 27, 2012, 9:27 am

    Great infographic! It seems crazy that distance learning has been around for so long, but it’s great to see that it has come so far with advancing technologies.

  7. [...] Email This   Print   Comment   Login50%50% Distance learning has been around for hundreds of years:  1840: Sir Issac Pitman, the English inventor of shorthand, started delivering instruction [...]

  8. [...] institutions like Harvard are increasing their offerings of online-only instruction…    Read More slider Like this Article? Share it! Tweet Related [...]

  9. [...] You can see the full infographic at this link. [...]

  10. Home Goddess
    February 25, 2012, 2:58 pm

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  11. Valuable Degrees
    Los Angeles
    February 24, 2012, 5:58 pm

    A lot of people knock online programs for various reasons. I completed my undergrad degree, MA, and JD in person. I opted to try an online school for my PhD, just to save the hassle of having to drive to campus every day. It is far more rigorous than any of the work I did in person, hands down. For a research-based degree, I think online degrees are even better than in-person, since you pretty have to figure everything out yourself – somewhat like the real world.

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  14. [...] 300 Years of Distance Learning This graphic follows its evolution from 1700′s America, through the War Years and on to The Open University and new online distance learning environments like Moodle. What will the future hold? Would you take an online-only degree? Read more on National Geographic [...]

  15. Absolutely Eco - Friendly
    Florida, U.S.A.
    February 23, 2012, 11:22 pm

    I see this from the student point of view. I can learn the theory on line or in a classroom but the practice that each field requires to qualify you and graduate you is another thing. So I think that the on line option is a little short, for now. This could change pretty soon.