Distance Education is the offering of educational programs designed to facilitate a learning strategy which does not depend on day-to-day contact teaching but makes best use of the potential of the students to study on their own. It provides interactive study material and decentralized learning facilities where students can seek academic and other forms of educational assistance when they need it (Daniels 1996).
The WVSU Distance Education Program (UDEP) was established in 2002 as the then Office of Distance Education (DEO) by virtue of Board of Regents (BOR) Resolution No. 118, s. 2002. Its programs respond to the growing needs of students and professionals who desire to pursue a diploma course or a postgraduate degree but are unable to leave their homes or work stations, here or abroad, to attend regular classroom meetings.
The UDEP aims to:
- produce learners who are competent and equipped with the necessary skills in their respective discipline
- develop a more flexible mode of education which caters to various needs, changing circumstances, and learning requirements
- design and produce quality and updated course materials by utilizing state-of-the-art technology and online resources, and
- strengthen the distance education organization/structure to meet the needs of learners in the local, national, and international levels
The UDEP gets technical support from the Management Information System (MIS) of the University and the Southeast Asian Ministers of Education Organization Regional Center for Educational Innovation and Technology (SEAMEO-Innotech, Philippines) for the operationalization of its site. This has become fully functional for the interactive classes; that is, tutor and students meet in live chat or video conference in pre-scheduled sessions. Teaching materials, assessment modes, and students’ output are uploaded in the website except for requirements peculiar to certain courses that need to be submitted in hard copy such as learning portfolios for practicum or field study.