Recent advances in distance education for physics students
AbstractDistance education has arisen in the past 30 years or so as a way of providing education to students who otherwise do not have access to local tertiary education facilities. This includes students who live in remote areas, students posted overseas, students who lack mobility, and even students who work during the day where suitable evening classes are not available. Deakin University has been teaching first-year engineering physics to both on-campus and off-campus students since 1996. The unit is part of a bachelor of engineering course accredited by Engineers Australia. This presentation outlines the advances made in delivering education in physics to a wide variety of students in distance mode. Course materials have developed from written study guides to fully on-line teaching materials, complete with streaming video presentation of lecture and tutorial material. Tutorials are delivered to off-campus students by web-conferencing. A very recent development is delivering on-line practical classes the same way. Challenges and how they were overcome will be discussed, along how modern educational technologies are employed.