Blake Wood
Publish Date

University of Illinois Springfield Professor Emeritus and Senior Fellow Ray Schroeder and the late Karen Swan, The James J. Stukel Presidential Professor of Educational Leadership at UIS, have authored two chapters in the new book “A Guide to Administering Distance Learning.”

Schroeder wrote Chapter 2, titled “Leadership for Online Learning.” In the chapter, Schroeder establishes a foundation for a deeper dive into the many aspects of leadership for distance learning. The reader builds an understanding of the roles and requirements of effective operational leadership in the day-to-day operations of distance learning. Further, this chapter explains the multifaceted roles of the strategic leader within the institution to advance distance learning programs within the institutions as well as the broader field worldwide. Tools, techniques, examples and resources are shared to accomplish these objectives. Schroeder hopes the reader will assimilate an understanding and appreciation of the importance of leading with knowledge, humility and wide perspective.

Swan, who passed away on Sept. 5, 2021, wrote Chapter 10, titled “Quality Assurance in Online Education.” Specifically, this chapter is about assuring that the quality of education offered online is at least equal to the quality of education offered to traditional students. After completing this chapter, the reader should have a general understanding of the issues surrounding quality assurance in five areas – access, learning effectiveness, faculty satisfaction, student satisfaction and cost effectiveness – as well as some notion of ways of ensuring quality in those spheres.

Schroeder is a senior fellow of the University Professional and Continuing Education Association (UPCEA). He launched the UIS online learning program in 1997, founded the university’s Center for Online Learning Research and Service. Schroeder regularly publishes articles, book chapters and presents nationally on emerging topics in online and technology-enhanced learning. He is the recipient of numerous national awards and citations for individual excellence and leadership from various associations and entities, including the Sloan Consortium, the U.S. Distance Learning Association, the American Journal of Distance Education, the Illinois Council for Continuing Higher Education, the University of Wisconsin and the University of Illinois.

Swan was a premier scholar focused on media and learning and more particularly on the world of online learning. She taught online for more than 15 years and her experiences guided her scholarly work on learning effectiveness, interactivity, social presence, learning analytics and learner support in online environments. Her scholarly publications included 150 published articles and book chapters, three books and a variety of multimedia programs. Swan received the Sloan-C award for Outstanding Achievement in Online Learning by an Individual and was a member of the Sloan-C Inaugural Class of Fellows. She was named the 2010 Distinguished Alumni from Teachers College, Columbia University and received the 2014 Burks Oakley II Distinguished Online Teaching Award. She served on the editorial review boards for the Educational Psychologist, International Journal of Instruction, Internet and Higher Education, Journal of Asynchronous Learning Networks and Journal of Distance Education.

“A Guide to Administering Distance Learning” was published in September 2021 by Brill and is available in e-book, hardback and paperback. Learn more at