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From the Editor

Author(s): Ugur DEMIRAY

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

Volume: 7;
Issue: 2;
Start page: 3;
Date: 2006;
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Keywords: Tojde | Turkey

Greetings Dear readers of TOJDE, I am pleased to inform you that in the 7th year of TOJDE is appeared on your screen now as Volume 7, Number: 1. Very much thanks to all of you once more that we met with you 22nd time, since January 2000. In this issue we published 15 articles like before issue, three book reviews, news and announcements for our readers. And also, we cancelled for the Call for Papers to the 4th Special Issue of The Turkish Online Journal of Distance Education (Volume: 7, Number: 2) which would be delivered in April 2006, instead of this issue, for the reason that have not enough quality papers for publishing on special theme. 36 authors from eight different countries are pleaced in this issue. These published articles are from Bangaldesh, Brasil, Canada, India, Malaysia, Nigeria, Turkey, UK and USA In this issue two articles are dealt with English Language Teacher Training (DELTT) Program application in Turkey, by Anadolu University. I gave a place to them as the fist and the last article. The first article of this issue is coming from The Anadolu University, which is written by Belgin AYDIN and T. Volkan YUZER. They are assistant professor at Anadolu’s Education and Open Education Faculty. Their article titled as “Building a Synchronous Virtual Classroom in a Distance English Language Teacher Training (DELTT) Program in Turkey”. Their paper reports a synchronous project, “the virtual classroom” prepared for the Distance English Language Teacher Training (DELTT) Program. The process of developing the synchronous project and the interface with its specific components were reported with examples and supported by theoretical background from the related literature. The evaluation of the project concludes that the virtual classroom facilitated increased authentic interaction and encouraged learners to become more autonomous. Second article is dealt with internet use adoption among academicians which is written as joint article by Norazah BTE MOHD SUKI and Norbayah BTE MOHD SUKI from Malaysia. In their study which entitled as “INTERNET USE ADOPTION AMONG ACADEMICIANS: Comparing Innovative Adopters and Other Adopter Types”, mentioned that how Internet use differs between academicians who are innovative adopters and other types of adopters. Data were collected from 301 respondents. Results provide new perspective on innovative adopters among Malaysian academicians; they have less experience than other adopters in shopping for products online, make fewer purchases online and pay small amount of money in shopping for products online than other adopters. Directions for future research are also discussed. And than third article is “How Istanbul HSBC Bank Operators Use Lotus Notes within Electronic Performance Support Systems” which is written by Assoc. Prof. Dr. Servet BAYRAM. He is from Computer Education & Instructional Technologies Department at Marmara University, TURKEY. His paper explores that use the Electronic Performance Support Systems (EPSS) efficiently is important in developing web-based applications. In this way, the aim of the study is proving the idea that Lotus Notes is a convenient tool for creating a powerful EPSS within the HSBC Bank example in Istanbul. For this reason, EPSS Domain Features Checklist is developed to assess the study group’s perceptions at the bank. The participants of the present study group consisted of 104 expert Lotus Notes (LN) users from the Bank Executive Management Center in Istanbul. It could be said that Lotus Notes is a helpful tool to show and to explain how EPSS activities are doing in what manner at the Istanbul HSBC Bank. The fourth article is from Texas State University, USA. It is dealt with student perceptions of classroom instruction which is titled “Comparison of student perceptions of classroom instruction: Traditional, hybrid, and distance education”, written by Mary Jo Garcia BIGGS. Her article reports the results of a project that examined student perceptions of the psychosocial learning environment in a distance education classroom. The study utilized a survey instrument, Distance Education Learning Environments Survey (DELES) that was distributed as a pre-test/post-test to three sections of the same course taught in three distinct formats: traditional classroom instruction, distance learning, and hybrid (partially on-line/partially face-to-face). The fifth article came from Brasil, written by Profa. Dra. Margarita V. GOMEZ. Her subject is entitled as “Contemporary Spheres for the Teaching Education: Freire's principles”. She focuses on Freire's cogitation on Information Technology (IT), resources for education have been known since the decade of the 50s. Within the internet context, the proposal implies a digital writing and reading ability that is based on communication and dialogue skills and, as fundamental strategies for reading the world, the real/virtual world, the knowledge of the daily speech, of writing and reading within a multi-diversification of digitally generated texts. She stated that long distance education through the internet from Freire's prospective is supported by the principles of popular education, that is: critical proximity to reality, radicalism (there is no neutral education), announcement, political organization, text-context relation, dialogical methodology without disowning the culture of silence that operates in the internet and this what it generates. I hope it is very interesting article to learn about Freire's principles for Tojde readers The sixth article which is jointly written by Prof. Murray TUROFF, Prof. Starr Roxanne HILTZ, Xiang YAO Information Systems Department, New Jersey Institute of Technology, Zheng LI from Pace University, Dr Yuanqiong WANG from Towson University and Dr. Hee-Kyung CHO from Fairleigh Dickinson University, USA. Their article is titled “Online Collaborative Learning Enhancement Through the Delphi Method”. Their paper pointed out an overview of these studies and then focuses on a recent case study in the fall of 2003 that demonstrated the ability of a computer mediated asynchronous Delphi process as a tool to scaffold collaborative idea generation and evaluation in both face to face and distance courses. The use in this case of comprehensive, broad, one level interaction menu, and context visibility to provide the submenu choices, are clearly two of the approaches that make an impact on reducing cognitive overhead so the participants may concentrate on the discussion and not the mechanics of the interface. The seventh article which is also joint study which is written by Dr. Bharat I. FOZDAR and Dr. Lalita S KUMAR, from School of Sciences, IGNOU, India. Their paper entitled as “Teaching Chemistry at Indira Gandhi National Open University”. In this paper authors are try to define intending to establish the credibility and authenticity of the B.Sc. (major) in chemistry programme by giving a brief comparative account of IGNOU and conventional university courses. It discusses the delivery aspects of this programme highlighting the existing delivery mechanism, analyses the weaknesses in the present system substantiated by a survey study and also suggests some new approaches to make chemistry courses more effective from learner’s learning point of view. The survey study has been helpful also in suggesting appropriate technologies for the effective delivery of Chemistry courses. The eight article arrived us again from USA. The article which is entitled " Running head: Online And Traditional Student Differences?" This title is discussed point of a study of motivational orientation, self-efficacy, and attitudes, differences between online and traditional students view. It is written by Dr. Tara STEVENS, Texas Tech University and Assistant Professor Carrie SWITZER from University of Illinois at Springfield-USA. The paper is aimed that to evaluate the differences in demographic characteristics, motivational orientation, self-efficacy, and attitudes about technology between students who enrolled in a course offered in the traditional setting and those enrolled in the same course online. The two groups, each comprised of 27 students, were administered self-report measures to evaluate their levels of technological self-efficacy, attitude toward technology, and motivational orientation. Participants also reported their age, number of online courses taken, and gender. Results indicated that the two groups did not differ in terms of their attitudes about and feelings of self-efficacy toward technology. Despite many similarities in motivational orientation, online students did report higher levels of interest, curiosity, and intrinsic motivation, suggesting that students in online courses may prefer autonomy in the course design. Further research is necessary to determine whether students seek out online courses because they possess motivation or if online courses create motivation. Next and he nineth article was sent to TOJDE by Rosman AHMAD, Rodger EDWARDS and Bland TOMKINSON from School of Mechanical Aerospace and Civil Engineering (MACE) University of Manchester, UNITED KINGDOM, Their paper is titled as “The Use Of WebCt In Distance Learning Course In University of Manchester”. They mention in their paper that the use of Internet was seen as an important issue in the development of an understanding of the complex process of instilling knowledge to post graduates students. Well-established universities are re-examining their missions and looking for different ways of providing lifelong education. There was a clear agreement between both staff views and students’ views regarding the effectiveness of using WebCT within the MACE projects as well as the other two WebCT programmes run in University of Manchester. The tenth article which is jointly written by Inci MORGIL from Hacettepe University, John H. PENN West Virginia University Department of Chemistry, USA; Nilgun SECKENand Ozge OZYALCIN OSKAY from Hacettepe University, Faculty of Education, Department of Chemistry Education, Ankara, TURKEY. Their subject is about “Introduction to Complexation and Masking Within a Computer-Enriched Module for Analytical Chemistry”. Their paper pointed out a web-based course was developed in order to improve pre-service teachers’ knowledge concerning complexation and masking in analytical chemistry. So, the effects of web-based learning modules on the achievement and learning levels of students were examined in this study on the subjects of complexation and masking. The result is that the application of computer-assisted learning modules in chemistry education was found to have a positive effect on the students’ achievement and learning levels. The eleventh article reached to TOJDE from a young researcher from USA which is written by Mehmet A. OCAK. He is PhD Candidate at the Department of Educational Theory and Practice, State University of New York, Albany. His paper title is “The Relationship Between Gender And Students’ Attitude And Experience Of Using A Mathematical Software Program (MATLAB)”. His paper concerns correlation study examined the relationship between gender and the students’ attitude and prior knowledge of using one of the mathematical software programs (MATLAB). He concluded that the results of the study indicate that there is positive correlation between students’ attitude toward the program and students’ prior knowledge of using the program. Thus, it is clear that students’ familiarity and experience on the use of MATLAB clearly affects students’ motivation. Teachers should use such programs according to students’ expertise on the program and develop new strategies that might catch interest, curiosity and enthusiasm. It seemed clear that effective use of such programs like MATLAB in mathematics classrooms would be expected from all students who have positive attitude and high experience on the program. Therefore, more research on gender, attitude, and experience in such programs is needed to understand how students work with mathematical software programs and use them as learning tool in the class environment. Next article is from Bangladesh Open University, BANGALDESH, which written by Md. Tofazzal ISLAM from School of Agriculture and Rural Development, Morshedur RAHMAN and K. M. Rezanur RAHMAN from School of Science and Technology, Bangladesh Open University, which is titled as Quality And Processes Of Bangladesh Open University Course Materials Development“. Their paper, attempt to describe the processes and quality of BOU course materials development taking into account the strengths and weaknesses as well as possible ways of improvement. It is mentioned in their article that as a new member of the mega-Universities, Bangladesh Open University (BOU) introduced with an example a course team approach for developing effective course materials for distance students. BOU teaching media includes such as printed course books, study guides, radio and television broadcasts, audiocassettes and occasional face-to-face tutorials. Each course team comprises specialist course writer(s), editor, trained style editor, graphic designer, illustrator, audio-visual producer and anonymous referees. An editorial board or preview committee is responsible for the final approval for publishing or broadcasting materials for learners. This approach has been proved to be effective, but appeared to be complicated and time-consuming. This report focuses on the quality and processes of BOU course materials development taking into account the strengths and weaknesses of the current approach. The thirteenth one about is “Economic Thought About Private Sector Education: Policy Implications for Management of Universities in Africa”, written by Joel B. BABALOLA from University of Ibadan, Ademola S. TAYO from Babcock University, A. OKERDIRAN from University of Ibadan, A. O. AYENI and S. O. ADEDEJI University of Ibadan, Nigeria and Centre for Comparative Education Research University of Nottingham, UK. According to them; this study provides relevant economic ideas that can assist Nigeria and other African countries in making innovative policies at privatizing university education. A review of the education market scene on the continent provides an imperfect market with adverse consequences occasioned by inadequate information and unbridled competition. Advocating a joint role for sharing the costs and benefits of university education between government and private sectors, the study suggests a four-policy option for adoption by Nigeria and other African countries. This paper demonstrates the positive managerial influence of a competitive and complementary system of private university. Nevertheless, to forestall market failure, this study rounds off by pointing out the reformatory, regulatory and redemptive roles of government in the management of private universities in Nigeria and other African countries. PDAs: Revolutionizing The Way We Learn and Teach” is the fourteenth article which written by Kimberly McDONOUGH and Zane L. BERGE. Their paper is outlining the current uses of PDA devices and m-learning in the higher education environment, including the technology behind PDA’s, benefits and limitations, applications for learning, instructional design methods, and the future of m-learning. PDAs (personal digital assistants) also commonly referred to as handheld devices or mini PCs. Computers are a common household necessity and children are being exposed to the digital world at a very young age. Video games and toys aggressively simulate real life images and scenarios. PDA’s are just one of the many technology devices being used to make connectivity, communication, organization and learning occur anytime, anywhere. Using PDA’s for learning is also referred to as m-learning, short for mobile or on the go learning. This paper will outline the current uses of PDA devices and m-learning in the higher education environment, including the technology behind PDA’s, benefits and limitations, applications for learning, instructional design methods, and the future of m-learning. And, fifteenth as the latest article which is mentioned by me above from Anadolu University, Eskisehir, Turkey on DELTT subject again which was titled as “A Novice Instructional Designer’s Principles for Internet Supported Learning: An Example from Testing and Evaluation Course”, written By Aysel BAHCE PhD. She is also, Vice Director of School of Foreign Languages Anadolu University. Developing Internet support materials and being an instructional designer is a real challenge for someone coming from face-to-face education culture. This definitely requires a new interpretation of teaching and a change in culture and expectation. However, both in face-to-face education and distance education the teachers’ responsibility is the same: guiding students’ learning. This responsibility, theoretical knowledge and classroom experience—knowing student nature and teaching the same course in face-to face education—played important roles in the development of educational scenarios. To help students to read-to-learn, reading models are used. By stating the objectives explicitly, students are guided to set their own agenda for learning. Different types of pre-reading activities aimed at tuning students in the reading so that they would not start reading with an empty mind. By the help of these activities either their background knowledge is activated or they are leaded to set expectations. The during reading tasks aimed at helping them to shift from “learning-to-read” to “reading-to-learn” by highlighting the important information in the texts and the text organization. Highlighting the important information is essential as students have a tendency to read and to try to understand every detail in the text. By the help of these activities, students learn the major points and minor points. So, in her paper, the principles that govern the development of the instructional strategies of Testing and Evaluation in English course of Distance English Language Teacher Training (DELTT) Program are presented. Firstly, the program and the course are described briefly. Then the major underlying principles are presented with reference to the related literature and examples from the course are provided. Three book reviews are published in this issue which entitled as “ON-LINE EDUCATION: An Emancipating Vision”, edited by Written by Margarita Victoria Gomez and, published by Cortez Editora, São Paulo, Brazil, in July 2004. Sthe second one is “Trends and Issues in Distance Education: International Perspectives”, edited by Yusra Laila Visser, Lya Visser, Michael Simonsın, & Ray Amirault, 2005, USA, Information Age Publishing. The last and third one is entitled “Teaching With Educational Technology in the 21st Century: The Case of The Asian-Pasific Region”, edited by Yukiko Inoue & Suzanne Belland and published by Information Science Publishing in 2006. The first book “ON-LINE EDUCATION: An Emancipating Vision” is reviewed by Ricardo Romo TORRES. He is from Manuel Moreno Castaneda, Maria del Sol Orozco Aguirre, Universidad de Guadalajara Virtual, MEXICO. Reviewer Dr. Torres indicates in his review that “"On-line Education" is a book that meets the challenge to present itself as an unfinished text. In addition to demanding an active participation of the reader, it requires a predisposition to complete it through an also inconclusive dialogue. Among its goals we can find the search for education networks that remain under constant reconstruction, maintaining the emancipative vision as an imperative for the reconfiguration, as a constituted tissue for the scaffolding of subjects who impress, imagine, think and have a will”. Second book, is “Trends and Issues in Distance Education: International Perspectives”. Edited by Yusra L. Visser, Lya Visser, Michael Simonsın, Ray Amirault, 2005, Information Age Publishing, USA. Reviewed by Dr. Erhan EROGLU, Anadolu University, Eskisehir, TURKEY. In this book, the terms of “distance education” has been discussed from different perspectives. The term “distance education” conjures up in many minds the image of modern, computer-enabled technology that has blossomed in only the last twenty years. Many of the lessons learned over the last century of distance education research and practice have been implemented in a wide variety of distance education programs worldwide, from higher education online learning programs in the United States to rural, radio-based instructional programs in developing countries. Distance education is truly international discipline. While it is true that the term “distance education” has a universal definiton, local distance ducation experiences are often quite idiosyncratic. This idiosyncratic nature emerges from the need to integrate distance education within the constraints, oppurtunities, and realities of spesific cultural and geographic contexts. From these local distance education experiences, educators are developing new understandings of the broader field of distance education, including the trends and issues present in the field. The third book is entitled “Teaching With Educational Technology in the 21st Century: The Case of The Asian-Pasific Region”, edited by Yukiko Inoue & Suzanne Belland and published by Information Science Publishing in 2006. Book is reviewed by Dr. Abdullah KUZU, Anadolu University, Eskisehir, TURKEY. The book describes the opportunities, challenges and strategies of the technology-enhanced learning in the regional base, namely Asia-Pacific. The main goal of the book is to examine educational technology, learning theories, human learning and cognition; to provide successful experiences in higher education and educational technology; to explain the technology integration into teaching in geographically remote regions such as Guam and Micronesia; to support faculty members in technology use and achieve the reluctance, and to discuss the future trends in educational technology. In the other sections are again in the same format as usual as TOJDE’s presenting style. News and some announcements are placed in this issue too. 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 to meet in our next Issue, in July 2006. Cordially, 31st March 2006 Prof. Dr. Ugur Demiray Editor-in-Chief Anadolu University Yunusemre Campus 26470-Eskisehir TURKEY Tel: +90 222 335 0581 ext. 2521 or Direct: +90 222 249 0576 GSM: +90 542 232 21 167 Fax: +90 222 320 4520 or +90 222 249 0576 Emails: or URL: URL:
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