OK remote WA, we're listening... but can you hear us? Part 1: Looking back to 2001
Community Services, Education and Social Sciences
This paper is the first in a two part series, this first part describes the findings from visits to two isolated and remote schools in the far north of Western Australia in 2001, the second part to be published in the next issue of AEC will describe a visit to the same schools in late 2003 to see what has changed. Parts of this first paper were originally published as Online or Out of Reach, (Rabbitt E. and Pagram J., 2001). As we move into the 21st century, higher education institutions in Australia and around the world are undergoing a transition. The trend is to move away from traditional methods of course presentation towards online methodologies. In theory, students within isolated and remote areas of Australia and around the world no longer need to relocate to major cities and educational institutions as they have access to learning opportunities online. The schools were visited in order to determine how practical this approach to education is in the "real" world. The results from 2001 suggested that in many parts of northern Australia access to these new courses was limited by the telecommunications infrastructure in place.