Hello. My background in design (outside of interaction issues) is kind of weak, so I'm interested in some continuing education. Specifically, I'd like some training in industrial design, and I've found a couple of graduate level programs (e.g., SCAD) that offer eLearning in that discipline. My question concerns the effectiveness of eLearning in this case.
I've taken some online graphic, digital, and interaction design courses, and those went well enough. Industrial design, however, involves a much greater use of non-digital materials for building models and so on; hence, many schools have labs and workshops for their students.
How is that sort of activity translated into an eLearning medium, though? Must the distance learner supply his or her own materials in that case? Is it possible to get proper training in industrial design this way? Distance learning may always be at somewhat of a disadvantage compared to traditional education, but is the situation worse for this particular discipline?