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Synch AND Swim - Blending Synch and Asynch Learning Environments
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Synch AND Swim - Blending Synch and Asynch Learning Environments


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Presentation for BAW 2013. More info and audio at

Presentation for BAW 2013. More info and audio at

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  • 1. SYNCH AND SWIM:Blending Synchronous and Asynchronous Learning Environments Michael Coghlan BAW 2013 24/1/13
  • 3. Bagan, Myanmar, Jan 2013
  • 4. The Andes Egypt Buenos AiresCape Town London NYAustralia Hawaii India
  • 5. Question:Are youA) In your office?B) In a computer suite?C) At home?D) Other?
  • 6. MULTIPLE VENUE CLASSROOM/ PRESENTATIONS F2F VENUE (MVPs)remotestudents guest public lecturer space
  • 9. What is synchronous/asynchronous communication? SYNCHRONOUS (real time) eg f2f conversation, telephone calls, chat rooms ASYNCHRONOUS – some delay between initial communication and the reply eg letters, email, forums, Facebook
  • 10. COMMUNICATION AXIS Reflective; Structured; monologue expositoryAsynch Spontaneous; Minimalist; rapid dialogue (evolving)Synch Oral Written
  • 11. COMMUNICATION AXISMost classroom communications take place hereNew – have been enabled by technology (only happen online)
  • 12. ASYNCHRONOUS TOOLS Email Forums, discussion boards Blogs (eg Blogger, Edublogs) Wikis (eg Wikispaces, PBWiki) SMS
  • 13. ASYNCHRONOUS TOOLSSOCIAL MEDIA/NETWORKING Facebook (tip: use the Groups feature) Google+ Foursquare etc (Geolocation) Flickr (images) YouTube (videos) Slideshare (slides)
  • 14. ASYNCHRONOUS VOICEVOICE BOARDS1. Wimba: try the board at Nanogong (esp for Moodle users) Voxopop: Aiden Yeh‟s Advanced Listening Group at Voicethread: examples at Podcasts (eg Podomatic; see See list at
  • 15. VIDEO LITERACYSee also Ustream and Google Hangout
  • 16. Synchronous approaches can be extended beyond the face to face (f2f) classroom
  • 17. The Original SynchronousEnvironment – plain text chat
  • 18. RANGE OF SYNCHRONOUS TOOLS Instant Messengers: Google Talk, Skype, Yahoo, MSN (text + voice) Peer to Peer/Collaborative Tools: eg Google Docs (documents), Mind Mapping, Whiteboards, etc Virtual Classrooms  Proprietary: Blackboard Collaborate (formerly Elluminate), Adobe Connect, etc  Free: Wiziq, Vyew, Big Blue Button
  • 19. Web Conferencing/Virtual Classroom
  • 20. Virtual WorldsSeeSecondLife inEducationSee alsoOpenSim
  • 21. Your Experience? Have you experienced the use of synchronous tools in online courses that you have either taught or studied?
  • 22. Question Why do you think it is important to include synchronous tools in online courses?
  • 23. Social/Affective BenefitsSocial, community, and personal engagement personal engagement/motivation (55%) community building (29%) improving the social experience (27%)(results at http://
  • 24. Tension: Synch v AsynchTerry Anderson, Toward a Theory of Online Learning:“….the major motivation for enrollment in distance education is not physical access, but rather, temporal freedom to move through a course of studies at a pace of the student’s choice.” Participation in (synchronous events) “almost inevitably places constraints on this independence.” “ The demands of a learning-centered context might at times force us to modify prescriptive participation in (synchronous events), even though we might have evidence that such participation will further advance knowledge creation and attention.”
  • 25. Resolving the tension between asynchronous and synchronous approaches don‟t make synch sessions compulsory; use synch for those who want it use tools that can record or archive the sessions for later retrieval don‟t use synchronous for whole class instruction use for meetings, one-on-one, or in small groups offer informal (social) sessions in synch mode allow student use of synchronous space offer office hours sessions at set times
  • 26. What kinds of tasks/activities work best with ASYNCHRONOUS? SYNCHRONOUS?
  • 27. Resolving the tension between asynchronous and synchronous approaches It‟s not all or nothing – use both approaches:  Synch for social, spontaneous, decision making  Asynch for deliberation, reflection, considered opinion
  • 28. Skills of the Live Online Presenter Golden Rule: 6-8 minutes talking at a stretch maximum Intersperse presentations with questions, polls, other speakers (from the floor), whiteboard activity Decide how to handle direct messaging – will you monitor/respond? Or ignore it? Dip in and out of it? Consider working with a producer/co-presenter More at http://
  • 29. What kinds of synchronous activities can you use in classrooms?TEACHING OTHER „straight lecture‟  Office hours Guest lecturers  Class to class Oral presentations  Social: student - Group work student One on one (eg pronunciation)
  • 30. PROFESSIONAL DEVELOPMENT Conferences, seminars Workshops and Training sessions Meetings (much more cost effective than teleconferencing) Weekly Webhead sessions at Noon GMT
  • 32. What‟s this?
  • 33. Twitter as a real time search tool? May 2008: “Twitter beats media in reporting China earthquake."• An almost real time search tool – Now being used by some as an alternative search tool to Google
  • 35. BACKCHANNEL TOOLS Direct or instant messaging in web conferencing tools (eg Centra, Blackboard Collaborate) Micro Messaging Tools: Twitter, Yammer Live blogging tools like Cover It Live Live polling tools like Poll Everywhere
  • 36. Purdue University: In-house Application
  • 37. Cover It Live
  • 39. Today’s Meeting – Your Feedback
  • 40. Can you use Twitter as teaching tool? with Twitter (Steve Wheeler) „Twit Board‟ Notify students of changes to course content, schedules, venues or other important information. (could be done with phone) „Summing Up‟ Ask students to read an article or chapter and then post their brief summary or précis of the key point(s). A limit of 140 characters demands a lot of academic discipline. √ „Twit Links‟ Share a hyperlink – a directed task for students – each is required to regularly share one new hyperlink to a useful site they have „Micro Write‟ Progressive collaborative writing on Twitter. Students agree to take it in turns to contribute to an account or „story‟ over a period of time. Use the backchannel to provide feedback on classes in real time √
  • 41. 21 st Century Skills
  • 42. 21 st Century Skills Decentralized decision-making, information sharing, teamwork and innovation are key in today’s enterprises Whether a technician or a professional person, success lies in being able to communicate, share, and use information to solve complex problems, in being able to adapt and innovate in response to new demands and changing circumstances, in being able to marshal and expand the power of technology to create new knowledge and expand human capacity and productivity.
  • 43.
  • 44.
  • 45. THE RECIPE FOR SUCCESSASYNCH SYNCH Email (one to one; one to many)  Chat or Instant Messaging tool (in LMS) Discussion tool (many to many; forum – in  Virtual Classroom LMS eg Moodle; Facebook, etc; Voice – Voxopop, Voicethread ) NEAR SYNCH Teacher or class blog  Twitter, Yammer Podcast site (eg Podomatic) Flickr (or other photo site) YouTube Channel SMS – for messages, remindersOptional Extra Collaborative Workspace (wiki, Google Docs)
  • 46. A Webheads Theme SongCHORUS Webheads – all over the world Webheads – we’re all over the world See
  • 47. Contact Details MICHAEL COGHLAN http://michaelcoghlan.nete: