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Developing telecommunication linkages for microcomputer-aided instruction

Agricultural Communications Documentation Center (ACDC)
Bates, Peter C. (main author), Blinn, Charles R. (author), Flack, Jan A. (author), Blinn: Extension Specialist / Assistant Professor, Department of Forest Resources, University of Minnesota, St. Paul; Flack: Former Assistant Professor/Instructional Designer, Educational Development System, Minnesota, St. Paul; Bates: Graduate Research Assistant, Department of Forest Resources, University of Minnesota, St. Paul
Publication Date:
Agricultural Communications Documentation Center, Funk Library, University of Illinois Box: 76
James F. Evans Collection, St. Paul, MN : University of Minnesota, Telecommunications Development Center, Minnesota Extension Service, 1989. 11 p. (TDC Research Report No. 1), As microcomputer use increases, there is a concomitant increase in the need for timely and efficient microcomputer training and problem solving. While face-to-face education and telephone contacts are most frequently used to provide these services, alternative distance education delivery systems need to be developed as training and travel funds become limited. The Telecommunications Development Center, the Department of Forest Resources, and the Minnesota Extension Service, University of Minnesota, evaluated two personal computer (PC) microcomputer teletraining systems (audiographic conferencing) to determine the effectiveness of this technology for point-to -point and multipoint distance education. System components at each location included a modem, a standard telephone line, a device for amplifying voices, and appropriate software. A commercial teleconferencing bridge was used to facilitate linking the instructor with two or more trainee locations. Pilot tests indicated that microcomputer teletraining can greatly reduce training costs without sacrificing training effectiveness. To payback the initial system investment, this technology would be most appropriate where long-term training requirements conducted on a frequent basis to multiple remote sites are identified.