Distance Learning in Postsecondary Career and Technical Education

March 30, 2005

Descriptive analysis of questionnaire responses and telephone interviews from 512 community colleges (response rate of 53.3%) sought to determine the following in relation to postsecondary CTE: (1) how prominent is distance education; (2) what are the institutional drivers and desired outcomes of distance education; (3) which institutions and students participate in distance courses and programs; and (4) what types of technologies are used to deliver distance courses. Some of the conclusions are as follows: (1) community colleges are providing CTE courses via distance learning to meet the needs of students by increasing access and convenience, but not to reduce costs; (2) lack of faculty interest and program development costs are the primary reasons for not offering CTE courses via distance learning; (3) a significant portion of community college CTE courses are offered via distance learning; (4) community colleges are offering few CTE programs that can be completed fully via distance learning; (5) enrollments in distance learning courses and programs are expected to increase; (6) distance learning CTE courses attract more working professionals, employed students, and single parents compared to on-campus classes; and (7) Internet-based courses are the most prominent form of distance learning. (Contains 28 tables, 2 figures, and 62 references.) (MO)

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