The educational aspect of online learning is shifting as technology becomes a part of our daily lives. As new technology emerges into the 21 century, educators have opportunities to interact and collaborate with the learners, therefore establishing a learning community. Through the use of online tools and strategies from educators, online participation can enhance the learners experience in communication, collaboration and content. Online tools include; wikis, skype, instant messaging, individual study, resources, blogs, forums, discussions and small groups. Strategies include; asynchronous/synchronous learning, guidelines, rubric assessment, and problem solving activities.
Sandy Wenzel’s blog agrees that you now have a network view instead of a geographical view in the educational setting through the web by means of communication and content. The convenience of the online tools creates an atmosphere where students are able to engage and collaborate in the areas based on their learning desires. Tawana Stiff posts in her blog that “it is the learner who constructs the knowledge by creating the experience or the collaborative discourse that yields new knowledge”.
Siemens (2007) and Durrington, Berryhill, & Swafford (2006) both indicate that student satisfaction and achievement outcomes can result from strategies and tools used in an online environment. So converting face-to-face courses to online learning, the educators must take into consideration the learners needs and the availability of the 21st century online tools. So through content, communication and collaboration, successful engagement of learning can be established by using new tools and strategies as stated in first paragragh.
Durrington, V. A., Berryhill, A., & Swafford, J. (2006). Strategies for enhancing student interactivity in an online environment. College Teaching, 54(1), 190-193. Retrieved from: http://search.proquest.com/docview/274679812?accountid=14872
Siemens, G. (2007). George Siemens-Curatorial Teaching. Retrieved from:
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