Sunday, April 18, 2010

Online Education

I feel guilty that I have not posted since January. It reminds me that teacher time goes very quickly without a strategic plan to evolve and improve beyond the daily interactions with students and parents. My time has been spent taking a grade class on all aspects of online classes. The research concludes that online courses are at least as effective as traditional (face-to-face) classes. In some cases, they may be more effective, but there needs to be more research to identify what types of subjects and pedagogy are best suited for online classes. In addition, there also needs to be more research on the best practices of designing an online class. There is no question that online students require organization skills, self-motivation, and considerable Web2.0 skills. Questions still remain. What other skills should students possess? What technical skills are required? How should the teacher organize and moderate the class? What student learning styles are best suited for an online class?

In my opinion, we are entering a new era of education where technology changes student behavior and the skills that are necessary for an information-based economy (see diagram below). To prove that I have not been slacking, check out my online class blog (link)





References:
  • The Shift image from Steve Hargadon via Jennifer Dorman presentation on Challenge Based Learning on Slideshare.net
  • Thumbnail Online Class image from link