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From Editor

Author(s): Ugur Demiray

Journal: The Turkish Online Journal of Distance Education
ISSN 1302-6488

Volume: 10;
Issue: 1;
Start page: 4;
Date: 2009;
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TOJDE is appeared on your screen now as Volume 10, Number: 1. This is the first issue of the year 2009 and 10th anniversary of TOJDE. In this issue it is published four article are in “Notes for Editor Sectio”, 13 articles, 2 reviews. And this time, 26 authors from twelwe different countries are placed. These published articles are from Australia, Botswana, Canada, Italy India, Jordan, Malaysia, Nigeria, Srilanka, USA and Turkey. “Service Learning In Distance Education: Foreign Language Learning Environments” has sent to editor of TOJDE from Turkey and written by Muhlise Coşgun OGEYIK from Trakya University, Faculty of Education Edirne, TURKEY and Emre GUVENDIR from University of California. Their paper provides an overview in general education, in particular foreign language education, can be acknowledged as a lifelong learning process which can be transformed beyond the borders in global sense. Learning a foreign language requires proficiency in four basic skills which are reading, writing, speaking, and listening. Of these skills, speaking and listening are the most daunting tasks for learners and create obstacles when learners of target language do not get the chance of meeting native speakers. Such obstacles can be overwhelmed by integrating certain applications into education process. Service-learning through the internet as a teaching method can be considered one of the most striking one of those applications for foreign language learners. Paper focuses on the benefits of service-learning are discussed and some suggestions are offered for introducing this method in foreign language settings. The second notes for editor is titled as Students’ Opinions On Blended Learning which is written by Meric BALCI and Haluk SORAN from Hacettepe University, Education Faculty, Ankara,Turkey. They mentioned that E-learning was acknowledged by most educators and researchers as a savior, even an only alternative in education field, especially in the following years of its emergence. However, with the rise of its limitations, the idea of bringing face-to-face learning and e-learning together to complete each other has occurred. Blended learning is a method emerged as a result of this sentiment. For this purpose, a survey was carried out at Hacettepe University, Education Faculty, and Biology Education Section. For the research, blended learning was implemented within the frame of Special Teaching Methods course. 20 students who attended to the course constituted the working group. A multiple-choice test of 54 questions was prepared to get students’ opinions and applied to them at the end of the semester. While analyzing the responses of students who had high success level was more favorable, it was observed that the frequency of participation to the forum pages did not affect the students’ answers. “Evaluation of Course Tutor’s Performance Through Open Distance Learning In Pakistan: Perception of the students” is third paper for “Notes for Editor” section of TOJDE’s this issue. It has written by Sheikh Tariq MAHMOOD, Azhar MAHMOOD and Allah Bakhsh MALIK from International Islamic University, Pakistan. This research deals with the evaluation of course tutor's performance appointed by the Allama Iqbal Open University, at Master of Education level. The study was delimited to the students enrolled during semesters, spring 2006 to spring 2007 in Rawalpindi region. The sample of the study consisted of 63 students of Rawalpindi district. A five-point Likert rating scale was administered to collect the views about the selected parameters of course tutor's performance. Results showed that tutors’ performed better regarding students’ guidance and providing instructions in first tutorial meeting. The last one for Note for Editor from Turkey’s new University. Its name is Bilecik University. We are publishing the first time an article from this university. Article entitled as Students’ Attitudes Towards WebCt Applications In Selected Courses, and written by Mehpare TOKAY ARGAN. In her article mentioned that WebCT is one of the widely used web-based learning tools. For enriching teaching and learning courses at tertiary level, WebCT emerges as an important tool. Paper describes attitudes of students at Anadolu University towards WebCT applications in selected courses. Furthermore, the study describes the attitudes of a sample of students towards WebCT and analyzes data to determine the effect of WebCT dimensions on satisfaction, course advising, and course preference on their overall perception and referral of a course. The results of this research have significant implications for both the web-based learning as a whole, and it would be a contribution to relatively limited literature on the attitudes towards WebCT enhanced courses in Turkey. The first article of this issue is coming from Australia on “Distance Education And The Incorporation of An Online Learning Activity Into The Human Rights Law Course To Promote Deep Learning”, written by Dr. Alperhan BABACAN. He states that although this course has been taught on a face to face basis, in future, it will also be offered to on line students. This calls for new teaching and learning and assessment practices which promote deep learning for those enrolled in distance education. After a brief discussion of the theoretical literature relating to assessment, the paper discusses the perceived benefits of introducing an online learning activity relevant to the aims of the course. The paper then outlines the proposed on line activities and the relevant online tools. How the student will engage with the activity is addressed as is student demonstration of discipline based learning. The Second article is “Potential Benefits and Complexities Of Blended Learning In Higher Education: The case of the University of Botswana”, written by Regina K. MASALELA, from Distance Education Department University of Botswana, BOTSWANA. According to MASALELA, Blended/hybrid learning is dominating news in higher education as a training and educational delivery method of choice. Based on the interviews with 15 faculty members and one administrator that had direct experience with this form of delivery at the University of Botswana (UB) the findings suggested two major themes that dominated faculty members ’accounts: potential benefits and challenges of blended learning. The study was guided by the Diffusion of Innovation theory. The potential benefits of blended learning included improved pedagogy; engagement in learning; and added flexibility in the teaching and learning to mention a few. The third articles are from Pakistan. The third one is on “Teacher Education For Distance Learning Based Special Education In Pakistan, written by Tanzila NABEEL, from Allama Iqbal Open University. In her paper she has focused on Special education is a mode of education in which specially designed instruction material and environment is required to meet the diverse requirements of children with special needs. In Pakistan, Open University (AIOU) exclusively initiated a program for teacher preparation for Special Children through distance learning. The 4th articles arrived from Canada which is prepared on “SECONDARY ONLINE EDUCATION: A Review and Synthesis of Central Elements, written by Dr. Thomas G. RYAN and Richard BEAULIEU. Illuminate the distance education field of endeavor to point out that online education can now be found at most educational levels (elementary, secondary, post-secondary) globally. It is emphasized that all online educators need to be aware of the student (profile of successful online learners, interaction), assessment/evaluation (rigorous, comparable and authentic), support (student support and training on using the technology), technical infrastructure, and the need to review program frequently which is key to the development and maintenance of successful online education efforts. The fifth article came from Turkey and written by Seval Kardes SELIMOGLU Faculty of Economics and Business Administration Anadolu University, Eskisehir, and Aylin Poroy ARSOY via Yasemin ERTAN from Faculty of Economics and Business Administration Uludag University, Bursa, Turkey. The aim of their study is to research the effect of the preferences of the students concerning PowerPoint presentations in financial accounting courses on their final scores. The data was collected from questionnaires that were applied to 77 students taking Financial Accounting I course in Anadolu University. According to the results of the study; the preference of the students about PowerPoint presentations has no significant effect on their final scores. However when the preferences about PowerPoint presentations are combined with an appropriate study environment, this effect positively increases the final score. The sixth article which is entitled as “The Effectiveness Of E-Learning: Academic And Business Comparison” which is written by Ayham FAYYOUMI, from e-Business Management Section, Via Per Monteroni, Lecce, ITALY. In this article it is mentioned that e-Learning has emerged; e-Learning is scalable, less expensive than traditional learning, and clearly advantageous for learners to access educational information and content anywhere and anytime. Accordingly, this study intends to develop measures for the effectiveness of e-Learning and define the factors influencing them, and how both –the effectiveness measures and influencing factors- are perceived by different e-Learning practitioners, in particular, business and academic ones. “Students’ Perceptions of Change Readiness of A Turkish Education Faculty Regarding Information and Communication Technologies” arrived again from Turkey and writer by Yavuz AKBULUT, Anadolu University, Turkey. This article investigates the involvement of the institution and teaching staff in technology integration from observers’ perspectives through administering a personal information form and a 31-item Likert questionnaire to 475 senior students of the Faculty of Education. Findings revealed that what were reported by instructors in the previous study seem somewhat different from what is being reported by their students in the current study. The eight article is came from Jordan. Titled article is on E-Learning s A Knowledge Management Approach For Intellectual Capital Utilization which is written by Issa SHEHABAT, Saad A. MAHDI from Philadelphia University and Kamel KHOUALDI from Al-Zaytoonah University, JORDAN. Their paper addresses human resources utilization at the university environment. We address the design issues of e-learning courses that can capture the teacher knowledge. Therefore, the design of e-learning should be an important part of the university knowledge management process. The 9th article is arrived to us from The Open University of Sri Lanka, written by S. Anbahan ARIADURAI and Rajalingam MANOHANTHAN. The article is entitled as Reasons for Student Discontinuation in Engineering Degree Courses Offered At A Distance. The study concludes that increasing student numbers will not necessarily increase percentage of students completing the programme though the number of students completing is increased. It is found that students offering courses for the first time in the system of distance education in their academic career perform poorer because they are not conversant with distance education techniques. It is recommended that the Faculty must offer an orientation programme on distance education to all the students enrolling for the first time, before they commence their regular programmes. Next and the tenth article is written by Bong Chin WEI, Wawasan Open University, Malaysia. The paper is entitled as “A Multi-Channel Approach For Monitoring Off-Shore Outsourcing Projects for Distance Learning Material Development”. She introduces the outsourcing process in WOU followed by some of the issues faced by the university while working with the offshore writers and the adaptation of course materials. Subsequently, details of the monitoring mechanism used in the outsourcing process will be explained. Lastly, this paper also presents WOU’s future direction in this perspective. The eleventh article arrived from Maharashtra Open University, INDIA, which is titled as “Assessing Effectiveness of Interactive Electronics Lab Simulation: Learner’s Perspective”, written by Chetana H. KAMLASKAR, Maharashtra Open University, INDIA. He focused on electronic lab simulation. Simulation enables learning by doing and provides opportunity to explore the modeled domain. Interactive simulation allows to present information in more dynamic, compelling and interactive way with engaging environment. This paper discusses the application of interactive simulation supporting the actual laboratory session of basic Electronics lab activities. The article is which numbered as 12, from TURKEY. Article is entitled as “The Effectiveness Of Online And Off Line Word Of Mouth Messages On Traditional Course Choice At Tertiary Level , written by N. Serdar SEVER, from Eskisehir Anadolu University Faculty of Communication Science, Eskisehir. This study aims to explain how bachelor of communications students who are enrolled to various courses at Anadolu University value word-of-mouth messages in making a course decision. Use of WOM as a marketing tool in tertiary teaching is not a common practicThe findings of this study indicate that instructors’ previous experiences are not as important as their in-class performances. The thirteenth article is again from Anadolu University, the communication Faculty on “Online Communication Courses: The Developments in The Area of Communication Education” which is written by Murat ATAIZI, Anadolu University, Eskisehir, TURKEY. He says in his article that E-learning as a form of distance education has become one of the essential movements in all levels of education. Almost all of the higher education institutions in Turkey as well as the rest of the world have been trying to offer e-learning opportunities for their students and the staff. Anadolu University in Turkey has a web portal, which is called Anadolu University Internet Supported Education System, which serves to support academicians’ classes via the online system. The aim of this research is to find out the academicians’ teaching method when they use the online support system. Two books are reviewed in this issue. The first one is about “Trends and Issues in Instructional Design and Technology” is a reader friendly reference source on instructional design and technology (IDT) helping both professionals in the field and novice practitioners trying to get used to the trends and concepts of the field. The book is prepared by eminent scholars, Robert A. Reiser, Florida State University and John V. Dempsey University of South Alabama. The second reviewed book is written me and my colleagues for the 25th Anniversary of OEF titled as A Review Of The Literature On The Open Education Faculty In Turkey 1982–2007 (A Revised and Expanded the Fourth Edition). From beginning 1982 to December 2007, studies which have done during 25 years dealing with the application of Open Education Faculty in Turkey. In this fifth edition of the study contains 458 studies are placing in this version; while 313 studies were placed in 1982-2002 fourth version. Increasing rate of the publications is more than 50% during 2002-2007 years. All these studies were conducted and written by more than 700 researchers while 463 of who male and, 248 were women.Dear readers, you can reach us online either directly at or by visiting Anadolu University homepage at from English version, clicking on Scientific Research button and than go to the Referred Journals. To receive further information and to send your recommendations and remarks, or to submit articles for consideration, please contact TOJDE Secretariat at the below address or e-mail us to Hope to stay in touch and meeting in our next Issue, 1st of January 2009 Cordially,Prof. Dr. Ugur Demiray Editor-in-Chief Anadolu University Yunusemre Campus 26470-Eskisehir TURKEY Tel: +90 222 335 0581 ext. 2521 or 2522GSM: +90 542 232 21 167 Fax: +90 222 320 4520 or Emails: or ugdemiray@hotmail.comURL: URL:

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