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Teaching Online: What's different?

An overview of teaching online, focusing on the importance of communication.

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Teaching Online: What's different?

  1. 1. Teaching online: what’s different? Prof Linda Creanor GCU LEAD This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.
  2. 2. Overview • What’s different about teaching & learning online? • Online communication • The online community • Communication styles • Motivation & time management
  3. 3.
  4. 4. The 5 Stage Model (Salmon, 2011) Log on & make contact Form the online community Exchange information Engage with the learning Apply new knowledge Learner Activities Welcome & encourage Find common links Support task Facilitate discussions Link to wider context Tutor Role
  5. 5. Designing online learning activities They should be – •Motivating •Interactive •Flexible and adaptable •Customisable
  6. 6. What’s different about teaching online (1)? Encourage participationEncourage participation & collaboration& collaboration Organise & manageOrganise & manage the online environmentthe online environment Give clear instructionsGive clear instructions on activities &on activities & discussion topicsdiscussion topics Facilitate onlineFacilitate online discussionsdiscussions Set tone ofSet tone of the discussionsthe discussions Provide basicProvide basic ‘‘ground rules’ground rules’ for the online learnersfor the online learners You will ....
  7. 7. What’s different about teaching online (2)? Learners need to...... • be more self-motivated • become confident in using the technology • be prepared to accept more responsibility for their own learning • make time to contribute to online discussions and activities
  8. 8. What’s different about teaching online (3)? Tutors and students also need to .... • develop an online identity • be willing to engage with the online community • know when and where to find help and support • manage time to allow for regular communication/online and offline study
  9. 9. Online communication tools • Discussion boards/wikis/blogs etc (asynchronous) – You don’t need to reply right away – You can have time for reflection before responding – Everything posted there remains visible for all to see • Real-time ‘chat’ and videoconferencing (synchronous) – Immediate responses – Gives a sense of ‘presence’ – Requires quick thinking and short responses – Needs to be well managed
  10. 10. Building the Learning Community GCULearn discussion groups, wikis, blogs, social media agreeing responsibilities between learners & tutors group members supporting each other Making sure everyone is clear about what’s expected Most importantly, regular & meaningful communication supported by ….
  11. 11. Communication Styles Things to think about – • Formal or informal? • Personal or impersonal? • Length of messages? • Frequency of messages? • To the group/tutor/individual? • Use of jargon, acronyms etc? • Use of humour (carefully & sparingly)!
  12. 12. Useful Tips • Give messages a meaningful title • Avoid ambiguity • highlight key points in bold text • Use clear fonts in reasonable size • Use paragraphs to divide text to make it easier to read • use file attachments for long messages • respond to correct thread in the discussion group • KISS – Keep It Short and Simple
  13. 13. Expressing Feelings " I agree/disagree ….." " I'm confused…………." " I feel strongly about this ……." " I'm finding this very interesting …….." Makes it less impersonal!
  14. 14. References • Salmon, G. (2011) (3rd Ed) E-Moderating: The Key to Online Teaching and Learning, Routledge • MacDonald, J. (2008) (2nd Ed), Blended Learning and Online Tutoring, Gower