Distance Education: Cultural Heritage is ‘New’ Normal! (LS-TR-513)

Distance education as a cultural heritage

Nowadays, distance education has been entered suddenly into our life with the pandemic: but distance education has actually been around for quite a long time…Distance education is a powerful resource to go on teaching and learning during the pandemic. It was useful in every historical period. In fact, it is a cultural heritage for societies. If teachers and students notice distance education’s background, they will understand much more easily the effectiveness and value of it. So, if we understand distance education as a cultural heritage, I believe that we will have a better education system with a combination of distance and face to face education via technology in the future. As a result, I can say that blended learning is coming effectively and fast.

Aim of the project

Most of us think that the beginning of distance learning is with computer technology and the internet, but it has a long-term tradition in many European countries, such as the United Kingdom, Germany, and France. In the United States, the earliest recorded distance education program was in 1728 when Caleb Phillips advertised private correspondence courses in the Boston Gazette newspaper! Isn’t it amazing?

The learning scenario contains activities with ICT tools such as CanvasPhotoshop, and Google Forms. Students have some challenges that make them discuss, depict, and design infographics.

Infographic prepared by one of my students in Photoshop


The first part of the lesson was devoted to finding out answers to the questions such as:

  • What is distance education?
  • Which European countries used distance education?
  • When / Why / How did European countries use distance education?

Students studied these questions answers by watching videos and doing research on what is the evolution of distance education. They also designed infographics to understand the chronological period of distance education by working in teams. By the end of the lessons, students understood the evolution and importance of distance education for societies. Thus, they had much more aware of the aim of today’s distance learning which they use and have a big part in their life. As a result, they understood clearly that learning and teaching activities never stop at any time during the past as well as today.

Students focusing during the lesson

Would you like to know more about this learning scenario? You can download it below:

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CC BY 4.0: the featured image used to illustrate this article has been found on Europeana Collection and provided by the Wellcome Collection.

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