Quality of e-Learning: An Analysis Based on e-Learners’
Perception of e-Learning
Rengasamy Elango1, Vijaya Kumar Gudep2, and M. Selvam3
Majan University College, Sultanate of Oman
Skyline College, Sharjah, United Arab Emirates
Alagappa University, Tamil Nadu, India
Abstract: e-Learning, of late, has been witnessing an unprecedented expansion as an opportunity for higher education. This expanding alternative mode calls for ensuring and imparting a sound and qualitative education. The present study made an attempt to investigate the issues related to the quality dimensions of e-learning. Our results revealed the presence of both strengths and weaknesses in the e-learning system. It is interesting to note, that the e-learners have expressed diverse opinions with regard to administrative issues, instruction materials, instructors’ support, viper sessions (VIPER, Voice Internet Protocol Extended Reach is a software which helps interactive learning through the Internet) , grading and assessment. The findings of the study further demonstrate that if the concept of e-learning is imparted with a better approach and perspective, the reach will be phenomenal. This study reiterates the relevance of imparting qualitative education through e- learning.
Keywords: Online courses, e-learning, quality assessment
The phenomenon of Globalization has transformed world trade, communications and economic structure in the 21st century and consequently, the complexion of higher education sector too has undergone a sea change in the last two decades. Although higher education, science and technology have always been international endeavors, of late, they have acquired new dimensions and features. Internationally, a majority of the institutions offering higher education is making strenuous efforts to revise its academic orientations and the course delivery strategies in the light of the interplay of these global changes and emerging challenges. Against this background, research studies which addressed the quality issues in e-learning are gaining importance. There is an increasing body of research evidence which demonstrated that, the thrust of the forces of globalization of higher education paved the way for the emergence of virtual education (Knight, 2002). It was also observed by several researchers that with the advent of the Internet technology, integration of the Information technology (IT) tools into higher education stream has become an easy task (Alsunbul, 2002; Altbach, 2002; Coffman James, 1996). In this context, online learning mode has emerged as a major higher education option before the global student community in general and Arab student population in particular. Higher education institutions operating in countries like America, UK, Australia, New Zealand, European Union (EU) and various other developed countries are making efforts to re-adjust in the light of the contemporary challenges and Middle East countries are no exception to this inevitable transformation. While advanced countries responded to these pressures of Globalization rather more successfully with their vast resources, the Arab nations are still in the process of designing strategies to readjust to the dynamic phase of global reforms in the higher education sector. In this context, several educational researchers observe that the student options are no longer constrained by boundaries and, therefore, it paved the way for the emergence of new internet-based borderless virtual education, distance learning and educational franchising (Phillips, 2001).
2. Issues in quality assurance – Middle East scenario
While contemporary research reports focused on the quality aspect of the borderless virtual education, a majority of the Middle East countries is focusing on designing viable accreditation systems to bring quality in virtual education. In this context, it was observed that the...
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