Master of Distance Education
MSc, MA, PhD
Thomas Hülsmann studied at the University of Tübingen and the London School of Economics before he obtained his Masters Degree in Mathematics at the University of Bielefeld in 1976.
After a decade of teaching Mathematics in several African countries, he came to distance education through his experience in developing schoolbooks for mathematics in Madagascar where he worked for the German Association for Technical Co-operation until 1994.
He then took a Masters Degree in Education and International Development/Distance Education at the Institute of Education in London. 1996 he joined the International Research Foundation (IRFOL) under its director Hilary Perraton to do research on cost-effectiveness of distance education in a number of European countries.
Since 1999 he works at the Carl von Ossietzky University in Oldenburg (Germany) as a member of the Center for Distance Education (ZEF) where he helped launching the Master of Distance education (MDE) a joint program offered by the University of Maryland University College (UMUC) and Oldenburg university. Together with Prof. Dr. B. Holmberg and Prof. Dr. O. Peters as visiting experts, he has taught OMDE601 (Foundation of Distance Education) several times. He has developed OMDE606 (Costs and Economics of Distance Education) which he regularly teaches with Prof. Dr. G. Rumble as visiting expert.
True to his continued interests in developing countries he developed two courses on distance education in developing countries which eventually were merged into DEMP 625 Globalization, Development and Distance Education, which is is still the core course in the Certificate Distance Education in Developing Countries.
When 2007 as part of a major organizational restructuring at Oldenburg university the Center for Distance Education was merged with other units of the university to form the new Center for Lifelong Learning and with the retreat of its Director Ulrich Bernath he inherited his role as Director of the MDE on the Oldenburg side.
With Dr. Bernath he is responsible for the ASF-Series (a series of monographs on research in distance education) which is closely linked with the MDE program. The series comprises meanwhile thirteen volumes, a number of which are written by MDE faculty or visiting experts and is used in various courses of the program. - He is also serving on the editorial board of Distance Education, one of the leading journals in the field of distance education.