This paper attempts to address a number of themes of this conference, including the economics of distance education, the �digital native� or �homo sapiens�, and required changes in faculty development. A look back to the beginning of distance learning is used to highlight the significant and almost exponential growth in the field, and some of this growth is extrapolated forward. Unquestionably, new technology has had a positive impact on distance learning in terms of provision levels, asynchronous learning, the economics of learning (in part), access levels, open education, and lifelong learning. However, as is often the case with technological progress, there are associated concerns, some inherited from the growth to date, and some anticipated with predicted growth. The purpose of this paper is not to cast a dark cloud across the bright future of distance learning (why should it when the author works in an institution of 60 years� standing in distance education?), but rather to point with a constructive finger to some of the concerns that should be addressed as the new technologies propel distance education into its glorious future.
Rutland, P. (2007). Opportunities and concerns for new technologies and distance education. In 12th Cambridge Conference on Open and Distance Learning, Cambridge, United Kingdom.