Transforming Distance Education


US Department of Education


United States

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The EdTech Center @ World Education was commissioned by the US Department of Education (Office of Career, Technical, Adult Education) to develop professional learning modules for practitioners teaching adult basic academic skills, ESOL, and literacy at a distance. The three-month contract funded a rapid development of the course as well as the launch of a Equity in Digital Learning listserv that is moderated by Digital US. This funding also made possible the convening of researchers and subsequent compilation of findings that identify shared themes across eight organizations’ research efforts on the impact of the COVID pandemic on adult education.

The Transforming Distance Education course draws on content based on over a decade of known practitioner expertise and past research as well the recent research on innovations unearthed since the pandemic from the technical working group. The course is designed with four key considerations in mind: accessibility, relevance, flexibility and portability, and is organized in the following modules:   

  • Getting Started with Distance Education & Blended Learning
  • Outreach, Screening, & Orientation: Supporting Distance Learners from the Start
  • Effective Distance and Blended Learning Instruction
  • Assessment in Distance and Blended Learning

The course launched in September 2020 and is freely available on the EdTech Center’s site in a flexible format that allows practitioners to self-direct their learning by engaging in micro-learning, and the content is licensed under creative commons to allow for open use and customization. 

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World Education strives to build lasting relationships with partners across diverse geographic regions and technical sectors to produce better education outcomes for all.