Pub. date: 2009 | Online Pub. Date: December 16, 2008 | DOI: 10.4135/9781412963992 | Print ISBN: 9781412906784 | Online ISBN: 9781412963992| Publisher:SAGE Publications, Inc.About this encyclopedia
Terms like distance learning and distance education are largely associated with recent developments in computing—specifically the growth of the Internet and World Wide Web, but the reality of distance learning is much older. Isaac Pittman taught shorthand by mail as early as the 1840s. In 1858, the University of London had created an external degree program using the mail as a means by which students and teachers could exchange materials. Modern distance learning and education has its origins in the beginning of the twentieth century and the pioneer efforts of the French educator Célestin Freinet and Italian educators Mario Lodi and Bruno Ciardi. Freinet started his teaching career in 1921 in a small village in the coastal Alps near ...