Definitions

Flexible Learning works to expand the boundaries of traditional educational models by changing how course content is accessed and delivered.  Sometimes the terms we use to describe our learning models are unfamiliar, so we've created a glossary of sorts below.

The terms are divided into two categories: terms relating to timelines, and terms related to delivery method.

Method of Delivery Terms

Distance: A distance course takes place at a location other than a Red Deer College campus.  Distance locations will include places like our confluence campus in Rocky Mountain House or community learning sites in places like Stettler or Drumheller.

Face to Face: Instruction and learning occur in real time on-campus or at an off-campus facility. Locations may vary.

Online: If a course is described as “online,” it means that all class documents (outline, syllabus, assignments, grades etc) will be made available to students on the internet. In addition, all lectures (if there are any) will be conducted online in a virtual classroom. Online classes can be synchronous or asynchronous (see Timeline Terms below).
PLEASE NOTE: All online courses at RDC follow the Academic Calendar; they begin and end within a specified term.

Blended:  Blended learning uses online tools to supplement traditional face-to-face learning. There are three types of Blended Learning:

  • Blended: Instruction and learning that combines two or more delivery methods. This may include online, webconference and/or face-to-face instruction on-campus or at an off-campus facility.
  • Emporium: Replaces all or some traditional face-to-face class meetings with collaborative, activity-based work done in a shared learning space where students access the course materials.
  • Poly-Synchronous: A mix of face-to-face, asynchronous, and synchronous channels. .

Timeline Terms

Asynchronous: – Instruction and learning does not take place in real time but does include student and instructor collaboration and engagement. Instructor’s facilitate discussion boards, provide feedback on student’s assessments and assist students with content-related questions about course work. Learners complete lessons on their own or in collaboration with other classmates by accessing course content, materials, assignments, discussion boards, grades, etc. through Blackboard. Collaboration and interaction can be completed online and generally has no on site or face to face requirements.

Synchronous: Some or all instruction and learning takes place in real time using an online virtual classroom. Learners will access the online class at predetermined dates and times and will be greeted and guided through course content by an Instructor. Learners will access the course content, materials, assignments, discussion boards, grades, etc. through Blackboard. Collaboration and interaction are completed online and generally has no on site or face to face requirements.

Program Terms

No set end date: This term refers to programs rather than courses. Programs with no set end date allow you as many years as you need to complete the program requirements. Please note: each individual course will still be semestered; requirements for each course need to be completed within the academic term for which you have registered.

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