A program of distance education, e-learning, has been working at South Ural State University for ten years already. Education is carried out by the Institute of Open and Distance Education.
E-learning is a system of education using the newest informational and internet technologies as well as multimedia. South Ural State University has been using these distance technologies actively since 2003.
In 2017, nine-and-a-half thousand people are receiving education through the e-learning system. Almost half of them are those who want to receive their second degree through distance learning, complete their master’s degree, and complete courses of continuing education. A third of the distance students are yesterday’s schoolchildren, now working on their first degree.
The geography of this distance education is impressive: USA, Cyprus, Turkey, Qatar, Mongolia, Kazakhstan, Tajikistan, Azerbaijan, Uzbekistan, the Republic of Bashkortistan, Moscow and Moscow oblast, Yamalo-Nenets and Hanty-Mansiisk autonomous okrugs, the Amur oblast, Yekaterinburg, Chelyabinsk and Chelyabinsk oblast, and different regions of Russia.
Today, more than 2 thousand various courses are available on the SUSU distance education portal for school students, university students, post-graduate students, teachers, and civil servants. Examples of courses are “University management. Faculty management.”, “Foreign language”, “Philosophy”, and others. The simple interface of the portal allows users to orient themselves instantly and find the material they need.
What is this system?
The distance education system is, first of all, independent work with electronic materials and the use of personal computers, mobile phones, DVD players, televisions, and different devices which help the student.
In the process of this education it is possible to receive consultations and advice from teachers, evaluation from experts, and create a distributed society of users who are working on common virtual educational activities.
The e-learning system allows for timely, round-the-clock delivery of electronic academic materials to both students and teachers and helps with the mastery and popularization of innovative academic techniques.
One of the most substantial advantages of distance education is the possibility of developing academic web-resources, which means giving students the chance to access information at any time and any place around the world. The important thing is that e-learning makes it possible to make higher education available for those with special needs.
“All of the benefits set by Russian law are available for distance students. After all, distance education is not a different form, but a technology. Upon completion, everyone receives a government-approved diploma,” says Nadezhda Mirdak, head editor of the SUSU Institute of Distance Education.
The portal has everything for the successful education of students: theoretical materials, solution algorithms, hints that can be used when there are difficulties, training tests, and reference sources. Students are able to attend professors’ lectures in-person, without leaving their house, or can watch a recording of the lecture later. This is how one of the most important principles of distance education is realized – education at individual pace and rhythm.
Of course, the main role is given to independent work, but this doesn’t mean that the professor’s work is reduced to simply grading. The teacher helps students not get lost in the labyrinth of information, organizes and guides the educational process.
“I am sure that our audience will grow during the 2017 enrollment campaign because of those who will be studying online with our portal. Through the distance or mixed format it is possible to become a lawyer, economist, manager, governmental and municipal management specialist, pedagogical specialist, or builder. The accessibility of high-quality education (with a cost of 38,300-54,800 rubles) while allowing for students’ mobility are additional arguments for choosing SUSU,” says director of the SUSU Institute of Distance Education, Aleksandr Demin.
Distance education is an opportunity for all those who wish to increase their professional level non-stop while taking their individual abilities into account. This is, without a question, a new, modern, and very prospective step in the development of education.
All current information about courses and the e-learning educational system at SUSU can be found out by phone at: 8 800 300 20 80 (free within Russia) 8 (351) 267 98 10 (in Chelyabinsk), and on the site ode.susu.ru.