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The challenges for an African DE learner - a distance educator's perspective

JW Mostert


This article will first provide a theoretical overview of the problems that learners experience in distance education. It will also deal with some of the implications for course design. Problems associated with study through a distance education institution include loneliness, time management, examination skills and the format of the study material. Some distance education learners also struggle to adapt to a situation in which the role of the academic has changed from lecturer to facilitator. It is important that the distance education learner take responsibility for his/her own independent learning.

In the second part of the article, a generic delivery model for distance education in Africa will be proposed. The model will be based on the problems identified in the first part of the article and on the experience of the author both as a regional academic manager at Unisa and as a distance education learner at the same institution in 2004. It is also important that note be taken of the quality criteria developed by the Nadeosa task team.

South African Journal of Higher Education Vol. 20 (3) 2006: 501-513

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eISSN: 1011-3487