O'Reilly, M & Morgan, C 1997, 'The professional doctorate on WebCD', in H Ashman, P Thistlewaite, R Debreceny & A Ellis (eds), Proceedings of AusWeb97: the Third Australian World Wide Web Conference, Lismore, NSW, 5-9 July, Southern Cross University, Lismore, NSW, pp. 282-284.
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Students enrolled in Southern Cross University's (SCU) Doctor of Business Administration (DBA) are a unique group of senior business people. Their demand for greater flexibility of delivery and portability of study materials was the impetus for a redesign of this professional degree at SCU. With a rapidly growing student base around Australia and SEAsia, DBA study packages must be suitable for a very mobile and busy professional group. Most have convenient access to computers and network connection, unlike students in many other programs. On the other hand, DBA students do not have much time to devote to study. They are typically squeezing study in between many other priorities, snatching opportunities to read and write while in transit lounges, in-flight or otherwise en route between engagements. Informal feedback from students has recently indicated their preference for the compact, portable features of CDROM (Meredith, 1997). In this case however, initial considerations of design quickly moved from stand alone CDROM to the CD/online hybrid or 'WebCD'. Hybrids first made their appearance in 1994, with Microsoft's Complete Baseball CD being linked to an online supplement, followed in 1995 by a CompuServeCD which allowed subscribers to the periodical to link to various online, downloadable resources and consumer reference groups. At AusWeb96, David Metcalf [HREF1]presented a case for WebCDs as a way of utilising the advantages of both and complementing the weaknesses of each.