EQ: What would you require of instructors who taught a course you designed? Why?
Online teachers do have a more complex job than a traditional teacher. They will need to be knowledgeable with current technology to ensure that they can assist their students. They will also need to be able to design online content, comparable to our Blackboard classes. They need to understand how to reach their distance students attention and keep them engaged. Students will need to feel accepted and challenged in the class.
Here are a few of the guidelines from our textbook on creating online instruction:
- We learn from the text the following guidelines for the Instructor role: (page 137)
- Humanizing – Social connecting – using their names, pictures, personal experience and opinions
- Participation – Social networking tools: blogs, high level interaction and dialogue
- Message Style – Instructor is able to change tone or custom lesson according to the audience
- Feedback – Data gathered from assignments, quizzes, polls and questionnaires for later review
In addition is the time it takes to setup an online class: “Up front, it takes a great deal of time to put curricular materials together for an online class. I’ve spent as much as several weeks reshaping my classroom materials to work for online students. In some cases, activities that I have used effortlessly in the classroom couldn’t be adapted at all for online use, such as hands-on activities; so instead, I created new but comparable activities” (Everson, 2009).
Asking questions are a good ways to get students attention and to make them feel part of the class. Our textbook gives a few tips increasing interaction by asking questions. Here are a few:
- Humanize the online conference
- Ask good questions
- Limit the number / length of questions
- Summarize the summary message to support the discussion
When we take the global perspective into consideration with distance learning, we do need to keep in mind the different social cultures and established norms. What we assume is normal in our American classrooms might not be accepted in another culture. I know in other cultures that they do not shake hands, show the bottoms of their feet or talk out of turn. In our western world environment, we accept all three acts to be a norm without incident.
Moore, M. G. (2012). Distance Education: A Systems View of Online Learning, 3rd Edition.
Everson, Michelle. (2009, September). 10 Things I’ve Learned About Teaching Online. Retrieved on October 27, 2016 from http://elearnmag.acm.org/featured.cfm?aid=1609990
Unknown. (2015, June 22). Are you Ready to Teach Online? Readiness Surveys Aim to Help Faculty Prepare. Retrieved on October 27, 2016 from https://onlinelearninginsights.wordpress.com/tag/skills-required-for-teaching-online/
Office of Distance Learning. (n.d.). Designing an Effective Course. Retrieved on October 27, 2016 from https://distance.fsu.edu/instructors/designing-online-learning