I was not going to do a presentation, but somehow clicked the wrong click and so got added as a presenter. Well, I don't have anything new right now, but I'll take the opportunity to post a presentation I made some time ago titled: "Challenges of Non-Seminary Training." It was done for a worldwide theological education conference held in Canoas, Brazil.
It is written from the perspective of one who had done distance learning primarily from the foreign mission field, and goes back to early theological education by extension (TEE) theory. It was meant to address a series of issues pertaining to non-residential seminary education, but formation was foremost in my mind since that seems to be the biggest concern theological educators have about distance learning.
Perhaps the introductory part, and maybe the bottom of page five, might be of interest to you.
Click here to see the article, which is located on my website.
This is really insightful! Thank you for posting it! Like Alan, I would be very interested to know your thoughts on developments since 2001. I am engaged in an attempt to develop a seminary without a campus. I find the critiques in this paper of such an attempt very helpful. I'm wondering if there is a way to make an online seminary what you call "Formal." I love that choice of word. It is a critical distinction from "Campus Based." Thank you for these insights!