1. Group Members: Jacqueline Richardson Carel Lewis Gemma BrittonVolunteer Tutor Training1Topic 1: Challenges of being an Online TutorIn groups of three (3) persons, develop a list of challenges of being an online learner and thingsyou an online tutor can do to minimize the challenges of being an online tutor. Please uploadyour response as a word document.Challenges of being an online learner Things you an online tutor can do tominimize the challenges of being an onlinetutor(Jacqueline) Staying motivated (Jacqueline) Tutors can provide learners withcontinuous progress report and feedback tokeep them motivated.Promote a community for participants tolearn, share and evaluate each other.(Gemma) Learners may be from differingethnicities and languages and some mayexperience confusion in understanding theinstructions and comments offered by others(Jacqueline) Give clear instructions andguidance. Ensure the wordings used expressthoughts fully and clearly and represent theparticipants in the online environment.(Jacqueline) Lack of basic computer skills.Learners may not be familiar with the platformbeing used for the course.(Carel)The question of participants’ skill levelscan be addressed by mandatory orientationsessions. The “Introduction Forum” is idealfor this.(Gemma) Collaboration-Learners may behesitant to work with others because there isuncertainty about the kind of reception theywill receive from their teammates. In addition,disagreements may surface over appropriatetime and available tools for collaboration.Online Learners may not be willing to sharepersonal experiences as part of the learningprocess.(Gemma) Engage and create experiences tobuild trust among learners so that each feelsconfident and accepted as a valuedparticipant. Adult learners have a wealth ofexperience which can be brought to bear inthe forum and discussions. So it is importantto design not only content but social- relatedmaterials that provide the platform for them toshare their experiences.(Jacqueline) Tutors should encourageparticipants to share and provide avenuesthat will encourage the learners to share forexample using ice breakers or sharing theirown experiences and help to set a morerelaxing environment.
2. Group Members: Jacqueline Richardson Carel Lewis Gemma BrittonVolunteer Tutor Training2(Carel) Also through group work and theeffective use of questioning.(Gemma) Managing the learning process.The learner may experience difficulty inkeeping up with assignments and all the otherrequirements of the course.(Gemma) Remain open and flexible tostudent feedback, validate student input byproviding prompt feedback, give assignmentdeadlines and positive reinforcement.(Carel) Online classes pose some significantchallenges for developing communityinteraction. In the traditional classroom settinglearners are afforded a diversity of opinions,experiences, expressions, and ways ofthinking about a topic or concept. It alsoimplicitly teaches students how to manageconversations, make complex communicationdecisions, and negotiate relationships withothers. These valuable lessons are moredifficult with online learning.(Carel) Online tutors could make learnersaware of the diversity of opinions andexpression and welcome them. Tutors couldalso strongly advise that conversations beconducted within certain parameters andshould follow etiquette guidelines.(Carel) Lack of participation by Learners -Learners should be willing to activelyparticipate in the course interaction with thetutor and peers. However, when discussionsand forums are dominated by someindividuals, students can easily log outbecause they are not interested or are notfollowing the discussion.(Carel) To minimize the challenge of nonparticipation on the part of the learners and toincrease participation, the tutor can do anumber of things:- Online tutor should allow participants torespond freely to the posts put up by others.- Participants can also generate interest andinteraction by creating their own discussionthreads.- Clear procedures should be articulated withrespect to responding to classmates’ postsand are usually given in a list of etiquetteguidelines.(Carel) Equitable access to online education.Many people do not have computers orinternet access at home or may only havelimited access due to high costs.(Carel) The tutor can show compassion andunderstanding towards those who experienceregular internet glitches and those who haveto access the program from a cafe’. Once theproblem is known to the tutor reasonableadjustments can be made to accommodatethe individual learner.(Jacqueline) Online learners may not bewilling to report problems or difficulties theymay be experiencing in the course.(Jacqueline) Tutors can assist by contactinglearners that may not be contributing to thediscussion or course activities to find out ifthey are experiencing any problems. Thenthey should assist where possible to help thelearner resolve their difficulties.