Open learning is an approach to education that seeks to remove all unnecessary barriers to learning, while aiming to provide learners with a reasonable chance of success in an education and training system centred on their specific needs and located in multiple arenas of learning.

Principles of Open Learning

We often hear the term ‘open and distance learning’. This term implies that open learning and distance education are almost the same, or are closely associated in some way. Is this true?

The principles of open learning help us develop meaningful educational opportunities, regardless of the mode of delivery used.


Read about the principles of open learning in the Saide resource Empowering Learners through Open Learning. Think about your own courses and materials in relation to each of the principles (40KB, 2 pages).

Mode of Delivery

We consider the relationship between the spatial (distance) and technology continua when making decisions about mode of delivery in distance education. Situating our courses or programmes on a grid allows us to clarify and describe both the spatial dimensions and the technology-supported dimensions of a course or programme


Considering Mode of Delivery in Education is a Saide reflection document on modes of delivery in education (348KB, 8 pages).