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The Current Status of E-learning and Strategies to Enhance Educational Competitiveness in Korean Higher Education

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Author(s): Junghoon Leem | Byungro Lim

Journal: International Review of Research in Open and Distance Learning
ISSN 1492-3831

Volume: 8;
Issue: 1;
Date: 2007;
Original page

Keywords: e-Learning | e-Learning strategies | higher education in Korea | e-Learning in Korea | e-Learning policy | distance education

ABSTRACT
The purpose of this study was to examine the current status of e-Learning in Korean higher education and find ways to encourage the further use and development of e-Learning systems that aim to enhance Korea's academic competitiveness. A total of 201 universities in Korea (27 national and public, 163 private, and 11 national universities of education) were examined in this study. At the time of the study, 85 percent of the universities and colleges had investigated implementing e-Learning. There were special e-Learning teams in most national and public universities, as well as private universities and colleges. Findings from this study found that both teachers and learners alike, lacked meaningful support systems and opportunities to actively participate in e-Learning programs. Although such lack of support was found to be endemic, such lack of support and opportunity was found to be more accute in private universities, private colleges, universities of education, than mid-sized, small-sized, and provincial universities and colleges. Except for a few mid- and small-sized universities and colleges, most large universities and colleges were equipped with technical support such as infrastructure and operational platforms. These same schools, however, did not provide institutional support, nor did they employ appropriate policies needed to further the quality and enhancement of e-Learning offerings. Also, there was no meaningful link found between schools and industry, nor was there adequate financial support in place for the implementation of e-Learning systems, simply because many universities failed to allocate sufficient funding for e-Learning.In conclusion, the strategies for enhancing university competitiveness through e-Learning are as follows: 1) establishing support strategies according to the types of universities; 2) developing quality assurance systems for e-Learning; 3) enhancing support systems for professors and learners; 4) developing knowledge sharing systems between schools and industry; 5) enhancing international collaboration for e-Learning; and 6) developing and supporting e-communities of knowledge for research and education.
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