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504Re: Questions without answers

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  • jrbiau@yahoo.com
    Nov 20, 2001
      The problems of students abandoning
      > Web-based teaching are not different from the problems of students
      > abandoning straditional distance learning teaching, I think. That
      is, any
      > form of distance learning requires a great deal of self-disci0pline
      on the
      > part of the student. Otherwise the student falls behind and cannot
      > up.

      I have just started to teach computer skills for translators in both
      face-to-face and distance mode, so my experience is limited; but I
      would add another basic reason.

      Most messages take for granted that students know about electronic
      tools, but this is not always the case (at least in current Catalonia,
      where I teach). Students register for virtual courses because they
      cannot attend the lessons of a face-to-face course, not because they
      feel more comfortable in front of a screen than in front of a teacher.
      And then they realise that they have to make an additional effort to
      follow the course. Moreover, this effort comes at the beginning of the
      course, and they find themselves spending their study time learning
      about ftp, chat, attachment, ISDN, .rtf, html, etc, instead of
      translating or learning a language.
      Some students are not very literate computer users, so the medium
      involves an additional effort that they had not taken into account. In
      such cases, the medium is not an advantage, but an extra difficulty.
      And this also applies to 'bimodal' courses and face-to-face courses
      where electronic material is used.
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