Organization for Educational Research and Planning, Tehran, Iran
E-learning, as a form of distance education, is being increasingly integrated into higher education institutions. Successful distance education programs, require a well-balanced functional basis with different components including the support system. The goal of such support systems is to help instructors teach effectively in E-learning courses in a relatively unique educational environment. If virtual education teachers are not adequately supported the quality of distance education will decline. The support system of virtual educations instructors includes different instructional, mental-emotional support, and technical support. In this review, we aimed to describe the basic outlines of these three types of support.
The basic elements of instructional support include content knowledge, pedagogical knowledge technological knowledge, pedagogical content knowledge, technological content knowledge, technological pedagogical knowledge, technological pedagogical content knowledge (TPCK). With respect to mental-emotional support in an academic environment, the inner motivations of the instructors are more influential than external factors. However, incentives can help the motivational consistency. Technical support includes a special unit to assist faculties and support staff for instructional design, video production/ graphics, help desk and access to software tools.