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Georgia Real Estate InfoBase Contents - Chapter 7

Chapter 7

Online Education

LICENSING EDUCATION

Whether you are a prospective or existing licensee wanting to renew or upgrade your license or a provider of education, the information provided in this chapter will benefit you.  All education should be provided in the most professional manner.  But, when education is provided that leads to licensure, protecting the public trust creates additional requirements that must be adhered to by both the provider of the education and the student receiving that education.
The information contained in this chapter is designed to provide a summary of the education, experience, and examination requirements established by the Georgia Real Estate Commission. We recommend you also contact the Real Estate Commission for more detailed information and for any changes which may have occurred.
Additionally, we will discuss the regulatory requirements for the delivery of licensing education via distance learning.
This chapter is divided into the following sections:

The information provided in this chapter was sourced from the Georgia State statutes and rules governing real estate and appraisal licensing.  Content was either summarized or paraphrased in most instances for clarity and ease of review focusing on the most relevant points.
Real Estate:
Georgia Code O.C.G.A. § 43-40-8 (2011)  (Current through the 2011 Regular Session, Annotations Current through April 22, 2011) Title 43.  Professions and Businesses Chapter 40.  Real Estate Brokers and Salespersons

Georgia Real Estate Commission: Standards for Real Estate Schools, Courses and Instructors

Appraisal:
Georgia Code O.C.G.A. Title 43 Chapter 39a (2011)
(Current through the 2011 Regular Session, Annotations Current Through April 22, 2011) Title 43.  Professions and Businesses Chapter 39a.  Real Estate Appraisers

Georgia Real Estate Appraisers Board: Substantive Regulations, Standards for Schools, Courses and Instructors.
In addition, information in reference to distance learning formats and the certification process for distance learning courses was sourced from the Association of Real Estate License Law Officials (ARELLO®) website.

GEORGIA REAL ESTATE LICENSE STATE REQUIREMENTS

COMMUNITY ASSOCIATION MANAGER

SALES PRELICENSE

BROKER PRELICENSE

SALES POST-LICENSE

RECIPROCITY

An individual licensed in another state who becomes a Georgia resident may obtain an equivalent Georgia license without further examination or education. The applicant must submit a certification of license history (no more than one year old) from the state which the applicant is currently licensed. The certification of license history must show that the applicant:

CONTINUING EDUCATION

GEORGIA REAL ESTATE COMMISSION STANDARDS FOR REAL ESTATE COURSES

The following are excerpts providing an overview highlighting key points. For more in depth information, please refer to the appropriate section of the rules.  520-2-.01 Purpose of Chapter.
The purpose of this Chapter is to delineate the rules and regulations which the Georgia Real Estate Commission will follow in approving and regulating all real estate schools, instructors, and courses as provided for by O.C.G.A. Section 43-40-8

520-2-.02 REAL ESTATE SCHOOLS

Detailed requirements for gaining approval are delineated in this rule and schools must adopt and enforce standards for students that at least meet the minimums described in this rule which address Attendance, Required Exercises and Examinations, a Make-up Policy and Certification Requirements.
In addition, upon a student's enrollment or prior to the beginning of instruction in any course, the school shall provide that student a written “Notice to Students” containing the following information about the course.
(a) School Approval Details and disclose the following:

(b) Instructors - list the instructors who will teach the course(s).
(c) Certification Policy describing the school's grading policies for exercises, homework, examinations, and any other work on which the students are graded.
(d) Attendance requirements , including notice that the student must be on time and present for all in-class hours in order to receive credit for the course, and a statement indicating how students will makeup absences if the school has established a makeup policy.
(e) Prohibition of Recruitment Notice outlining the manner in which students must report any efforts of recruitment;
(f) Computer-based Courses   If the course is a computer-based course, the Notice to Students must also include:

(g) Preliminary Decisions   For Prelicense Courses, the Notice must include a description of the Commission’s Preliminary Decision option for persons with criminal convictions.

ADVERTISING

Advertising whether done by an approved school, an approved instructor, or the provider of approved courses or through any media must adhere to very strict guidelines covering the use of the Georgia Real Estate Commission name, prominent display of the school name, whether the course is an in-class course or a computer-based course whichever is applicable and the use of school’s passing percentage statistics.
Authors Note:  Students and schools should pay very close attention to the rules governing the use of passing statistics and or any guarantees used in advertisement by a provider.
Use of School’s Passing Percentage Statistics  
An approved school may not advertise that successful completion of its courses will assist an individual in passing either of the commission's licensing examinations unless it includes its passing percentage in the advertisement in type as large as the reference to passing the examination.  In calculating and advertising its passing percentage, an approved school must include the following information:
1. The passing rate of its students:

2. Whether the passing rate is for the salesperson's examination or the broker's examination (salesperson and broker passing rates may not be combined);
3. The actual number of its students taking the examination in the calendar year cited; and
4. The actual number of its students passing the examination during the calendar year cited.  An approved school that advertises courses that do not qualify an individual to sit for an examination but that are held out to the public as assisting an individual to pass the examination must comply with the requirements of this paragraph in advertising those courses.


520-2-.03 REAL ESTATE INSTRUCTORS

Only instructors approved by name by the Commission or guest instructors may teach Community Association Managers Prelicense, Salespersons Prelicense, and Brokers Prelicense Courses.

520-2-.04 REAL ESTATE COURSES

(1) Approved Courses  
The Commission intends that all approved courses be educational in nature. Schools should not specifically orient approved courses to the passing of state licensing examinations or other examinations. The courses should introduce students to the language of the profession and basic theory underlying the duties and responsibilities of real estate licensees. They should also seek to improve licensee's skills in handling the normal business activities of a licensee. Approved courses must require practice in the skills being taught and provide a significant number of exercises for practice of those skills. All courses should make students aware of the need for further study and the perfection of practical skills. An approved school may not hold out a course as approved until the course is posted on the Commission’s electronic record of the school’s courses or the school receives a certificate of approval from the Commission.
(2) Instructors
Only instructors approved by the Commission under the standards of this Chapter may instruct Salespersons Prelicense, Brokers Prelicense, or Community Association Managers Prelicense courses.  Only instructors with appropriate experience and knowledge of the content areas of Salespersons Postlicense or continuing education courses may teach these courses.
(3) Hours of Instruction  
For all courses approved under this chapter, an “instructional hour” means a period of time of at least 50 minutes of instruction or other learning activity.  In-class instruction and testing in any course shall not exceed 7.5 hours per day. 
(4) Documentation Required for Approved Courses  
For each approved prelicense, postlicense, or continuing education course, the approved school must maintain and make readily available to an authorized representative of the Commission documentation covering Course Outline, Learning Objectives, Texts,  Evaluation Materials, and Course Evaluations.
(5) Ethics  
Every course offered by an approved school for prelicense, postlicense, or continuing education credit must include acknowledgment and coverage of the ethical implications of the subject matter of the course.

(6) Prelicense and Postlicense Courses

(a) Community Association Managers Prelicense Course.  An approved Community Association Managers Prelicense Course must provide for a minimum of 25 instructional hours. 
(b) Salespersons Prelicense Course   An approved Salespersons Prelicense Course must provide for a minimum of 75 instructional hours. 
(c) Sales Postlicense Course A Sales Postlicense Course must provide for a minimum of 25 instructional hours. 
(d) Brokers Prelicense Course   An approved Brokers Prelicense Course must provide for a minimum of sixty instructional hours.
(e) Additional Subject s  Schools may offer units of instruction on subjects other than those required for courses cited in this rule only with prior written authorization from the Commission.
(f) Reading Assignments and Exercises   For all prelicense and postlicense courses cited in this Rule, schools must include with each instructional unit appropriate reading assignments for completion out of class.  The school shall also require that students complete out of class extensive written exercises that the school grades.  
(g) Student Certifications   Each out of class written assignment a student submits for grading must include the following:
I certify that I have personally completed this assignment.
__________ ____________________
Date Student's Signature
The school shall refuse to grade any out of class written assignment on which the student does not sign this statement. 
(h) An approved instructor and/or the school coordinator/director must grade the written course work required of students.

(7) Continuing Education Courses   

Every approved school must offer every calendar year a course designed to help licensees meet the continuing education requirements of O.C.G.A. § 43-40-8(e). This course or courses shall be in addition to the Community Association Managers Prelicense, Salespersons Prelicense, Sales Postlicense, or Brokers Prelicense Course. 
(a) Duration of Classes No school may offer a continuing education course of fewer than three credit hours.  A credit hour is defined as an “instructional hour” means a period of time of at least 50 minutes of instruction or other learning activity.  In-class instruction and testing in any course must not exceed 7.5 clock hours per day.
(b) Subject Areas   Any continuing education course which does not seek to improve knowledge and skills in real estate brokerage activity in the subject areas listed in paragraph (6) this Rule must have the prior written authorization of the Commission.
(c) Courses Exceeding 24 Hours  The Commission will accept any course for continuing education credit that exceeds twenty-four classroom hours in length only if such course also meets all requirements for approval as a sales postlicense course.
(d) Repeating Courses   A licensee who has successfully completed an approved course to meet any part of such licensee's continuing education credit may not repeat that course unless at least one full year has passed since the completion of that course.

(8) Teaching Methods  

While instructors may use such teaching methods as lecture, discussion, questions and answers, etc. in in-class sessions, instruction should also include role play, simulations, or other similar instructional techniques designed to assist students in mastering such skills as writing offers, presenting offers, calculating costs, pricing property, and complying with fair housing laws.

(9) Interactive Instruction Required  

Schools must present courses to students through interactive instructional techniques.  Examples of interactive instruction include such teaching techniques as providing a student (1) the opportunity for immediate exchange with an instructor in a classroom setting and (2) immediate assessment and remediation through computer assisted or other audio or audiovisual interactive instruction. Schools shall not attempt to provide instruction primarily by having students (a) read text material, (b) listen to audio tapes, (c) watch video tapes or films, or (d) study questions similar to those on the state licensing examinations or by combining elements of (a) through (d) above.

(10) Distance Education Courses  

Distance education is comprised of courses in which instruction does not take place in a traditional classroom setting but rather through other media in which teacher and student are separated by distance and sometimes by time.  Distance education courses are generally delivered through such media as telecommunications or by computer.
The Commission approves distance education courses:
(a) That meet all of the requirements of this chapter, or
(b) For which the applicant provides satisfactory documentation that the Association of Real Estate License Law Officials (ARELLO) has certified the course as meeting its distance education standards.  Any Commission approval based on such an ARELLO certification will cease immediately upon notice from ARELLO that certification of the course has been discontinued for any reason.
In distance education courses, a credit hour is defined as 60 minutes of instruction.

(11) Computer-Based Courses  

The Commission approves the offering of computer based courses that meet the specific standards of this rule and all other applicable requirements of this Chapter.
(a) Teach to Mastery   Every course approved under this Rule must teach to mastery. Teaching to mastery means that the course must, as a minimum:
1. divide the material into major units as approved by the Commission;
2. divide each of the major units of content into modules of instruction for delivery on a computer;
3. specify the learning objectives for each module of instruction. The learning objectives must be comprehensive enough to insure that if all the objectives are met, the entire content of the course will be mastered;
4. specify an objective, quantitative criterion for mastery used for each learning objective;
5. implement a structured learning method by which each student is able to attain each learning objective;
6. provide means of diagnostic assessment of each student's performance on an ongoing basis during each module of instruction.  This assessment process must measure what each student has learned and not learned at regular intervals throughout each module of instruction, and the diagnostic assessment must specifically assess the mastery of each concept covered in the content material.
7. provide a means of tailoring the instruction to the needs of each student as identified in paragraph 5. above.  The process of tailoring the instruction must insure that each student receives adequate remediation for specific deficiencies identified by the diagnostic assessment;
8. continue the appropriate remediation on an individualized basis until the student demonstrates achievement of each mastery criterion; 
9. require that the student demonstrate mastery of all material covered by the learning objectives for the module before the module is completed; and
10. consist of interactive computer-based instructional material which will reasonably require a student completing the course to expend the number of hours for which the course is approved.
(b) Documentation of Methodology  Prior to the development of specific computer based courses to be offered to meet prelicense, postlicense, and continuing education requirements, a school must submit to the Commission for its approval satisfactory documentation of the method by which each element of mastery in paragraph (a) of this Rule is to be accomplished.  If the Commission authorizes that method, the school may utilize that method in developing any courses it may offer to meet licensees' education requirements under this chapter.  The rationale for the educational processes implemented with computer-based study must be based on sound instructional strategies that have been systematically designed and proven effective through educational research and development.  The basis and rationale for any proposed instructional approach must be specified in any request for approval.
(c) Required Testing and Evaluation of Courses   Courses approved under this Rule must also meet the criteria outlined in this Rule except those covering in-class instruction. Except where the Commission has granted permission in writing to do otherwise, persons developing computer-based courses must:
1. when developing prelicense courses for salespersons and community associations managers, utilize at least nine persons in testing programs in order to evaluate for the developer the quality of content and the user friendliness of software and hardware. Of those nine persons, at least three must be unlicensed, at least three must be licensed salespersons or community association managers, and at least six must be non-educators. Persons developing any other courses for education credit for licensees must utilize at least six persons in testing programs in order to evaluate for the developer the quality of the content and the user friendliness of software and hardware.  Of those six persons at least four must be non-educators and no more than two may be brokers, unless the course will only be offered to brokers.  Persons developing such courses must document that those testing the programs have varying skill and knowledge levels of computers and real estate; and
2. make reasonably available to an authorized representative of the Commission documentation on the development and testing processes utilized in its computer-based courses.

(d) Types Of Programs Not Be Deemed As Meeting The Requirements

1. those which consist primarily of text material presented on a computer or other audio or audiovisual programs rather than in printed material;
2. those which consist primarily of questions similar to those on the state licensing examination;
3. those which consist primarily of combinations of the elements in 1. and 2. above.

(e) Length Of Instruction

Every computer-based course for the must consist of interactive computer-based programs which will reasonably require the student to expend at least

(f) Approved Instructor

Every school offering an approved computer-based course must offer those courses under an instructor. For the Community Association Managers, Salespersons Prelicense, and Brokers Prelicense courses, the school must offer those courses under an approved instructor. Every instructor in a computer-based course must:
1. be available to answer students' questions or provide them assistance as necessary;
2. provide reasonable oversight of students' work in order to insure that the student who completes the work is the student who is enrolled in the course;
3. certify students as successfully completing a computer-based course only if the student:

4. obtain from each student the following certification statement:
I certify that I have personally completed each assigned module of instruction. I understand that if any other person has completed any module of instruction or any part of this course required for completion of the course, the school may not award credit for the course or may withdraw credit already awarded for the course.
________ ___________________
Date Student's Signature
A school or instructor may permit a student to complete this statement in an electronic or internet format in any approved computer-based or distance learning course.  A school must provide prior documentation or demonstration to the Commission of the method by which the school will acquire this statement.  The Commission must authorize the method of requiring this certification.

(g) Homework Exercises

Schools may provide homework exercises, contract forms, or other assessment exercises required in approved courses in a computer-based or internet delivery format. A school must provide prior documentation or demonstration to the Commission of the delivery methods prior to offering such exercises or assessments.  The Commission must authorize the delivery method offered by the school.
(i) Schools may permit students in approved computer-based or distance-learning courses to complete written homework exercises, standard forms, or other assessment exercises. Each written assignment a student submits for completion of a computer-based or distance learning course must include the following:
“I certify that I have personally completed this assignment. I understand that if any other person has completed any assignment, contract form, or other written assessment required for completion of the course, the school may not award credit for the course or may withdraw credit already awarded for the course.”
_______ ___________________
Date   Student’s Signature

(12) Course Examinations

Every approved Community Association Managers Prelicense, Salespersons Prelicense, Sales Postlicense, and Brokers Prelicense Courses must conclude with an examination administered by the approved school.

Scheduling

(a) Schools shall administer final examinations for every approved Salesperson Prelicense and Brokers Prelicense Courses
(b) Passing Score.  On final examinations administered for Community Association Managers Prelicense, Salespersons Prelicense, Sales Postlicense, and Brokers Prelicense Courses, schools must require that students achieve a passing score on the final examination that is consistent with the passing score required on state qualifying examinations for these licenses unless a school has first obtained the written permission of the Commission to require a different passing score. 

Proctoring

 Schools must provide proctors for all final examinations for prelicense and postlicense courses and for any continuing education courses that require the passing of a final examination in order to receive credit for the course.  The school director, coordinator, approved instructor, or other person designated by the school director or coordinator may administer or proctor final examinations in approved courses.

(13) Alternatives For Meeting Prelicense Course Requirements

(a) College Courses. Applicants for examination may qualify to sit for examination by presenting college transcripts which show courses in real estate subjects of at least 10 quarter hours or 6 semester hours if the application is for the salesperson’s examination or 15 quarter hours or nine semester hours if the application is for the broker’s examination. Applicants for the community association manager’s examination may qualify to sit for the examination by presenting college transcripts which show real estate courses of at least four quarter hours or two semester hours with a concentration in community associations and community association management. 
1. Applicants must submit an official transcript at the time of making application for examination; and the applicant may be required to provide a description of the course or courses from the school's catalogue or bulletin.
2. Only courses which count towards the student's obtaining a major in the field of real estate or courses dealing with principles, fundamentals, or essentials of real estate and only courses in agency, real property law, and contract law at a school of law will satisfy this requirement. College correspondence courses and courses which qualify for continuing education units do not satisfy the requirements of this rule.
(b) Credits for Instructors. The Commission shall approve as meeting the education requirements for examination any instructor who submits satisfactory proof that he or she has taught a course or courses named in this rule within two years prior to making application to sit for an examination.
(c) Sales I, Sales II, and Sales III.  Applicants who successfully completed all three of the approved Sales I, Sales II, and Sales III courses prior to January 1, 1993, may present certificates of completion of those courses from approved schools in order to sit for the qualifying examination for a salesperson's license.
(d) Courses Approved by Other Jurisdictions.  Prelicense education courses for community association managers, salespersons, and brokers authorized by the regulatory body that regulates real estate licensees in any state, district, territory, possession, or province of the United States or Canada are approved as meeting the corresponding prelicense education requirements in Georgia provided that such courses are similar in credit hours earned to Commission approved prelicense courses and are offered through classroom instruction or through computer-based instruction that is consistent with the standards of these regulations.  

(14) Alternatives for Meeting Continuing Education Requirements

The Commission shall deem a licensee to have met the continuing education requirement of O.C.G.A. § 43-40-8(e) for a renewal period if the licensee successfully completes in a renewal period any of the following courses which have at least the total number hours of instruction the licensee is required to complete:
(a) Prelicense and Postlicense Courses.  Licensees may obtain continuing education credits by successfully completing during a renewal period a Community Association Managers prelicense, Salespersons Prelicense, Sales Postlicense, or Brokers Prelicense course.  Salespersons who complete the twenty-five hour Sales Postlicense course in their first year of licensure may count that course as meeting only 6 hours of the continuing education requirement for the first renewal period.  During their first renewal period, such salespersons must complete an additional 18 hours of continuing education courses in order to renew active licenses.
(b) College Courses. A licensee may obtain continuing education credit for a renewal period by completing at an accredited college or university any course of 4 quarter hours or 2 semester hours 
1. which counts toward obtaining a major in the field of real estate or courses dealing with principles, fundamentals, or essentials of real estate;  
2. which counts toward obtaining a major in business administration, accounting, finance, or marketing offered by a college or university accredited by one the regional accrediting associations recognized by the United States Department of Education; and
3. any 4 quarter hours or 2 semester hour courses in agency, real property law, and contract law at an accredited school of law.  College correspondence courses and courses which qualify for continuing education units may not be used to qualify under this Rule. 
(c) Credits for Instructors.  The Commission shall deem the continuing education requirement for a real estate renewal period as met by any instructor who submits satisfactory written proof that he or she has taught any of the courses approved under this paragraph for a total of 24 hours during the renewal period in which the instructor is applying for a renewal of a real estate license.
(d) Non-resident Licensees.  The Commission shall deem the continuing education requirement as met by any nonresident licensee who submits satisfactory written proof that he or she has met the continuing education requirement of his or her state of residence during the renewal period in which the instructor is applying for a renewal of a real estate license. If the state of residence of a nonresident licensee does not require continuing education, then such nonresident licensee must meet the continuing education requirements of a resident licensee.
(e) Courses Approved by Other Jurisdictions.  Continuing education courses authorized by the regulatory body that regulates real estate licensees in any state, district, territory, possession, or province of the United States or Canada may be used to count toward meeting the continuing education requirement for real estate licensees in Georgia. Such courses will be deemed as meeting continuing education requirement only if the courses are offered through classroom instruction or through computer-based instruction that is consistent with the standards for computer based courses or distance education described in this Rule.

(15) Verification of Course Completion 

Licensees completing courses approved under this Rule may be required to submit transcripts or other verification of completion which the Commission deems necessary and adequate.
ASSOCIATION OF REAL ESTATE LICENSE LAW OFFICIALS (ARELLO®)
(All information for this page sourced directly from the ARELLO website and paraphrased for brevity)
ARELLO® was founded in 1930 to facilitate the exchange of information and cooperation among regulators and policy makers in the area of real property.
ARELLO® has established a number of Goals in support of its Long-Term Goal: To be recognized as the global leader on real estate regulatory matters.  One of which is:
Goal C - Education, Training and Certification: ARELLO’s education, training and certification programs will increase uniformity and standardization as well as provide membership benefits of excellence and efficiency.

OBJECTIVES OF DISTANCE EDUCATION COURSE CERTIFICATION 

ARELLO-IDECC Delivery Method Definitions

CBT course

CBT (Computer Based Training) are taught via a computer and typically delivered from a CD-ROM or floppy disk. CBT courses may also be "distributed" but are not typically "delivered" via the Internet. The distinguishing feature of CBT courses is that an Internet connection is not needed to complete the course or run a substantial part of it. For example, a course that is sent to the student on a CD-ROM and installed to run on the student's computer independent of an Internet connection would be considered a CBT course. Even if the student completion reporting were done within the CBT program via an Internet connection at the end of a course, the primary delivery method is still CBT…

Correspondence course

Correspondence courses are courses that use static print or static print in electronic media as the primary means to deliver content and assessments. This means that print courses will either be mailed to students or that a word processing file or Adobe® PDF file will be made available through email or from a web site. The fact that the course may be distributed and accessed electronically does not change its delivery method. It is still a correspondence course which is merely distributed via electronic means rather than through the mail.

Internet course

Internet courses are courses that require an Internet connection to complete. Internet or web-based courses are typically facilitated by web technologies that use a web browser as the primary means of content delivery and providing interactivity. Typically, Internet based courses store student progress information in a database housed on the provider's server. Internet courses can typically be run from any computer having an Internet connection, a web browser and any software needed to run that particular course.

Mixed media course

Mixed media courses combine more than one technology to deliver content of a single course. Most often, mixed media refers to correspondence courses that utilize print or electronic media to deliver content to the student. In addition, for interactive exercises such as quizzes or exams, web or other technologies may be used. Essentially, mixed media utilizes specific technologies to deliver major portions of a course. For example, a course developer provides students with documents that they could download from a web site and read as the primary method of content distribution. (So far, this course would be considered a correspondence course.) But the provider adds some interactive quizzes students must take on the Internet, thus adding another media to the instructional design strategy. The course then becomes a mixed media course

Live Synchronous Course

An emerging format in recent years being used more and more for Continuing Education Courses is Live Synchronous.  In this format the technologies related to webinars is employed using video, one or two way audio, incremental assessments, etc. to deliver the course via the internet. The main feature of this format being it is delivered “synchronously”.  That means the instruction is being delivered live to the student but via the internet.  

Primary and Secondary Providers

What is a primary provider?

A primary provider is a course developer who has a proprietary interest in the product. The primary provider may develop the course or may hire someone to develop it. The primary provider may market the course themselves, have their own instructors deliver it and/or may sell it to secondary providers.

What is a secondary provider?

A secondary provider obtains a course from primary provider. They also have approved instructors and are responsible for monitoring student progress and verifying course completion and student identity. Secondary providers provide opportunities for interaction, support, administrative communications, and assessment or evaluation feedback. All critical components of delivery need to be measured next to the ARELLO-IDECC distance education standards.

How To Certify Distance Education Courses

To have your course certified, a course provider must provide ARELLO® with a detailed description and implementation plan for the course and meet standards set forth in the Distance Education Standards Manual and ARELLO® Distance Education Certification Program Policies and Procedures.

This is accomplished by completing a detailed application that allows ARELLO® to evaluate all aspects of the course. You may obtain the application and information packet in the Documents area of the site or through one of the links below. A provider must also ensure the instructor(s) associated with the course has earned the CDEI™ designation. As of January 1, 2009 any instructor associated with a certified course must have the CDEI™. ARELLO® requires each course have a credentialed instructor available to assist students with course content questions if the student is in need of such.
The International Distance Education Certification Center (Idecc )
With the proliferation of distance education in regulated industries like real estate, appraisal and insurance, many governmental regulatory agencies are concerned about issues found in distance education delivery systems. A few of these issues include how to verify student identity, verify clock hours or measuring appropriate levels of interactivity within the course. Some regulatory agencies have chosen to not allow distance education as a viable option to traditional classroom education in their jurisdictions because of these major concerns. However, as a substantial portion of existing research suggests, there is no significant difference between the outcomes found in the traditional classroom verses the distance education environment.
IDECC is a subsidiary of the Association of Real Estate License Law Officials (ARELLO). In 2000, ARELLO approved the formation of IDECC to extend the scope of its involvement in distance education. The ARELLO Board of Directors then assigned their Distance Education Council to administer distance education programs ARELLO would be involved with. The Distance Education Council is made up of regulatory and educational specialists from across the U.S. and Canada. The Distance Education Council maintains and oversees a group of highly qualified consultants to manage and direct the programs that are in place within IDECC. The Distance Education Council maintains authority in forging IDECC policy while ultimately reporting to and falling under the authority of the ARELLO Board of Directors.
IDECC provides a service to distance education courses providers with its program to review course delivery in light of the established standards and to issue IDECC certification to those courses structured to ensure quality delivery. Regulatory agencies often require proof that such standards have been met, which IDECC certification documents.
Many regulators require, by law, a course provider to first have their course ARELLO certified prior to approval for credit. Since, the name “ARELLO” exists in state rules and regulations it was deemed necessary to have two separate entities, ARELLO and IDECC. Fundamentally, the ARELLO Distance Education Certification Program serves the real estate industry while IDECC was formed to serve all other industries and academic institutions.

The Certified Distance Education Instructor Program (CDEI)

Please note that as of January 1, 2009, instructor(s) associated with distance education courses being submitted for ARELLO and/or IDECC (re)certification will be required to have the CDEI™ designation.
Instructors that have not earned the CDEI™ designation will not be permitted to be listed as the instructor for ARELLO or IDECC certified courses. ARELLO-IDECC requires a qualified instructor to be associated with every certified course. 
Program Overview
The CDEI™ program is designed to be used by persons preparing to teach professional and academic education courses via a variety of distance education delivery methods such as Internet, CBT, and video-conferencing.  Students becoming certified will have an excellent credential and knowledgebase by which to begin or continue their work facilitating distance education courses.
The CDEI™ program is also designed to present theory and good practice for facilitating a distance education course.  The program is divided into two courses: (1) How and why adults learn, and (2) Principles of good practice for teaching online.  Each course contains five major learning objectives.  Completion time for each module is approximately eight hours for a total of sixteen hours for the entire program. To earn the CDEI certification, the student must complete both courses.
The first course, How and why adults learn, will focus on educational theory.  Issues such as learning styles, motivation, and assessment will be explored.  The second course, Principles of good practice for teaching online, will practically apply these theories in an online professional education context.  In both courses the content will be applied to the role of a professional and academic distance educator.

Frequently Ask Question

For detailed explanation of all things ARELLO click on the following link: FAQ