This session in the winter series of free online CIDER sessions features a presentation and discussion with Dr. Steve Weiland from Michigan State University.

Title: A Case for the Self-Paced Online Course

At a time when the conventions of online teaching and learning favour student interaction in a variety of synchronous and asynchronous design features, what could sound more out-of-step than the self-paced course organized around autonomy and the isolated student? But claims for the value of online “learning communities” can be overstated, and the preferences of adult students overlooked. The self-paced course in which students work on their own to complete a sequence of activities (like reading texts, viewing and listening to digital media, exploring websites, and completing writing assignments) may actually satisfy the needs of adult learners as much (or more) than online courses reflecting one version or another of social constructivism in design. This presentation explores historical, theoretical, and practical dimensions of the self-paced course and concludes with evidence for success in using the format in a fully online MA program.

When: Wednesday, February 1, 2012 – 11am to 12noon Mountain Time (Canada)

Where: Online through Adobe Connect at:

CIDER sessions are brought to you by the Centre for Distance Education, Athabasca University: Canada’s Open University





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