The electronic era provides opportunities in education for 'richness' (that is, the overall quality of information) and 'reach' (the overall number of people involved in the exchange of information)' in contrast to 'richness or reach'. Gone is the need for learning exclusively within the classroom that is based on simulated exercises and contrived case studies. Through electronic and other means, the thrust of further and higher education can be on real-life projects in the real world. This 'bricks and clicks' approach enables learners to make meaningful contributions to work - and life in general - while earning academic credit. Examples of how this is happening - for example, through special projects, internships, and e-portfolio development - are provided. The emergence of new learning communities, with associated opportunities and challenges, is highlighted. Importantly, how the members of such communities can participate willingly and enthusiastically is considered. The consequential need for new models of education is explored.
Hornblow, D. (2007). Education in an electronic era: richness, reach and the emergence of new learning communities. In eFest 2007, Wellington, New Zealand.