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Are you ready to be an online learner?

 

Blended Learning Panel @richardgorrie et al [visual notes] #oucel12

Image by Giulia Forsythe – Blended Learning Panel @richardgorrie et al [visual notes] #oucel12
License: Public Domain as stated in https://www.flickr.com/photos/gforsythe/7704609288

Nowadays, online learning is happening everywhere. Most of the learning institution is practising the online education. Some people said that content is a king, without content the learners will struggle hence will give impact to their engagement. So how to design the lesson that includes the learning material that is engaging. Perhaps we need to observe the instructional process practised in a conventional classroom. The insight gained will guide us to create an indicator for lesson design in an online learning environment. In a traditional classroom, learning engagement is gained from two-way communication between teacher-learner and learner-learner through face to face meeting. Without teachers in front, the learners need to be highly disciplined and fully independent. In a virtual environment, the teacher exists only in the learner’s mind. Interaction just happens if the learners are active. The teacher will guide, motivate and give a challenging task. So, it is up to the learners to cope with the activities laid out in the learning management system. As the online learners, you need to be consistence and stay on the schedule. You may be required to maintain good habits with the time management and study techniques.

5 replies »

  1. Hi Dr. Hamidon,

    I am currently in my first semester at Walden University (Minnesota, U.S.) obtaining my certificate in Instructional Design. The program is fully online, so your blog entry definitely caught my attention. Ironically, I have never taken online classes before as a student, but I have taught them. When i was in college, online courses had just launched and there weren’t many too choose from. I didn’t prefer online courses anyways, so I never gave it a shot. Now that I am back in school taking online courses, I feel I can add some insight into your question.

    To answer your question, the online instruction environment has been challenging for me now that the shoe is on the other foot, so to speak (with me being the student instead of the teacher). I now see things from different perspective in terms of how to make sure I am learning the material, generally engaging in the course, and completing my assignments in a timely manner. It is quite a juggle to be an online student and discipline is in critical to success. I do agree that the way in which the content is delivered/organized on the online platform can be key to whether the student is engaged in the course or not. While it is hard to have the face to face contact offered in the traditional class setting, I do believe there are other ways to ensure students are engaged with the instructor. For example, my instructor requires us to post on the discussion boards, but also posts on them as well. This makes me feel engaged with him although we are not speaking face to face. Also, video postings are another way to make students feel engaged with the instructor. My instructor posted an introductory video that combated the notion of “the teacher only existing in the student’s mind”, as seeing and hearing his voice made him more “real” in my mind.

    Just wanted to add my perspective now that I am in the student’s shoes, thanks for listening!

    ~Erin

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    • Thanks for the comments. What impressed me with online learning is that educators can reach as many learners as they can, hence will create a sense of ‘global classroom’. There is no issues and challenges cannot be solved. Study by study made by the researchers convinced me to keep on exploring the online learning especially on the learners’ engagement and the learning analytics. I think we still need the traditional classroom, it is just a matter of transforming the traditional learners into online learners. I still need the ‘old teaching’, because that is where I came from. Our teachers in the 60s taught us how to survived, even though they ‘spoon feed’ us but they also guide us by creating curiosity in us. They are firm and take extra effort to discipline us. This should happen in an online learning process. In an online learning teacher only exist the learner’s mind, they can’t see us, they can’t touch us. We all are at a distance. So how do we maintain our closeness? Online learning should be designed as if as the ‘teacher’ is in front of the learners. I think we can do it with ‘immersive’ technology by creating the ‘simulated world’ in the LMS or any learning platform through a very minimum gadget or equipment. Your statement “My instructor posted an introductory video that combated the notion of “the teacher only existing in the student’s mind”, as seeing and hearing his voice made him more “real” in my mind” shows that we missed the ‘human’ touch. Thanks

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  2. Thanks for your response! I also love the idea of a “global classroom” environment creates through online teaching, but I’ve always preferred a traditional classroom settings as well. With such an immersion of online teaching globally, I wonder sometimes if the traditional face to face teaching will be fazed out completely one day? I guess time will tell.

    You so eloquently pointed out that my instructor is still a fragment of my imagination as a result of the video( smile). I’m looking forward to learning more about immersion technology and how that can add the human touch factor. Do you use this type of technology in your online courses?

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  3. Thanks for the update Erin, yes setting it up is easy, we have the solution, but in the implementation, will be a bit tedious and challenging because we are facing the human (learners). Lets the traditional classroom still there, but let’s move the learners forward ‘beyond’ the conventional classroom. Just imagine, we are confined within the four walls, but our mind goes beyond it. Thanks

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