Distance learning is less expensive to support and is not constrained by geographic considerations, therefore it offers opportunities in situations where traditional education has difficulty operating, and students and tutors can access the process at convenient times which enables other commitments to be fulfilled and also means that a wide diverse student cohort can be catered for.
This Level 3 Diploma course is delivered over ten modules and is suitable for those who wish to enter distance learning as tutors and learner supporters. There is an assumed basic knowledge of education delivery and specialist subject knowledge.
Distance learning is becoming a growing area of education delivery, particularly with the availability of various information technologies which can be adapted, harnessed and utilised to enhance student experiences. This course seeks to highlight these technical advances and provide explicit guidance on their use within this specialised learning environment.
Each module is followed by activities which you are encouraged to complete, together with keeping a reflective journal as part of the course. This journal can be used towards continued professional development. Materials can be studied online or there is also the option to have the printed materials delivered for an additional charge of £65.
The course culminates with a formal online examination. The following is an overview of each module:
In this module we will look at the history of distance learning and how it continues to evolve.
Discussions will also cover definitions of distance learning and the concepts and models which have been used to theorise the approaches, requirements and methods of delivery.
Distance learning tutors have to be aware of underpinning educational theories and legislation, for example those that refer to lifelong learning, quality assurance and professional practices of course delivery.
In this module we will look at underpinning and relevant theories of education, discussing how they apply to distance learning. The course material will also present various models of learning and how these need to be adapted to suit distance learning, paying particular attention to issues of differentiation and skills development.
Building from the content of module 2 we look at student requirements and categorization of learning skills.
The course will also cover areas about proactive support, blended learning and helping student to overcome specific issues in distance learning such as activity scheduling, isolation and motivation.
We also look at the different problems of supporting students such as time and funding inputs, boundaries and responsibilities, and dealing with various problems that might arise.
There are many computations of delivery methods in distance learning, and tutors need to be equipped to use a variety of mixed media. the module will cover the following:
In addition it will also discuss blended learning which is a mix of some or all of the above
This module looks at how the distance learning student can continue to develop their learning skills and how these can be appropriately assessed and supported within the remote environment. The module looks at the ways in which tutors can facilitate positive student experiences and help students to work towards achieving positive outcomes.
In this module we will also look at how the tutor can use student experiences in order to develop their own skills.
This module explores the different strategies in marking student's work and also addresses the psychological issues surrounding remote learning. The module will present various key ways to mark which are efficient and versatile but it will also present the pros and cons of marking approaches.
The feedback we give to students is critical to their learning experience and therefore we will explore how to convey positive feedback even when the overall achievement is poor. There will also be discussion on how distance learning tutors can help students to improve their skills in weak areas and maintain motivation, even within the virtual or e-leaning environments.
In this module you will draw on your journal to help build up personal marking strategies and guidelines which will help you in both time management and consistency (further explored in module 9)
In this module we look at access to courses, student entry points and how tutors manage these flexible parameters. In addition we will discuss the limitations of distance learning support, together with student responsibilities and expectations
Distance learning students often â€˜go missing' or leave the course. Tutors are not always party to personal information regarding students or administrations issues which would be informative. Therefore in this module will examine retention of students, strategies for improving retention and the theories which underpin these strategies; and what the tutor can do to maximise retention in their own courses
There are various key aspects in delivery of positive and successful distance learning courses; these will be examined in detail:
This module will cover the normal requirements and experience necessary in a variety of posts such as GCSE. A level, Diploma and Degree. It will also cover the following fundamental processes:
Normally the distance learning tutor will amass a huge amount of documentation, course materials and books, particularly if they tutor several awards or courses, This module looks at how you can minimise and handle this â€˜stuff'.
In addition, with multiple entry points, courses and awards, keeping track of students and key dates can be overwhelming; this module discusses these issues in depth and presents some frameworks which will helps to organise and record appropriately and efficiently. We will also cover the following:
Once you have some experience of distance learning tutoring you may wish to branch out into course writing or become an examiner. This module looks at some of the ways you can diversify and also discusses what is needed in order to fulfil the different roles:
This completes the brief overview of the course content. The course is designed to be informative, enjoyable and motivating. Once you have completed the course and been successful in the online examination, you should have a sound grounding and underpinning knowledge of what is required within a distance learning tutor role and be equipped to expand your knowledge and acquire practical experience.
Previous Knowledge Required
No previous knowledge or experience is essential to study this course.
This course offers 12 months student support. Tutors are available to answer student questions relating to course materials and to comment on the assignments that are sent in to state how well students have understood the unit content.
Final online multiple choice examination counts for 100% of the final grade. Throughout the course there are ten SAPs (coursework) and a thesis. The course clearly states that this is not mandatory to complete as it has no bearing on the final grade. We do suggest that students complete these as this will not only assist them in examination preparation but also will give the student the skill set should they wish to continue their studies (continuous professional development) at a higher level.
This Level 3 Diploma in Distance Learning Tutoring is Quality Assured by OLQA. Upon successful completion of the course you will receive certification awarded by Oxford College. The qualification does not carry UCAS points but is recognised by employers and some universities as a level 3 qualification. For entry into university students will need to check the relevant university’s entry requirements to see if they will accept a Level 3 Diploma in place of A Levels / UCAS points.