So I have moved back into the University system for a time, working as an educational designer, in supporting the implementation of online learning. As I work, I realize a significant issue, one that I have come across in many of my work places. It is the question of what is an acceptable level of being online for academics when they start out in the online space? Often when Universities or schools begin their online learning journey, there is an expectation that the work of academics become exceptional – Web 2.0 tools are the expected order of the day, students are expected to engage in blogs, wikis, web conferencing, Twitter, Prezi, Flikr, Slideshare, the list is endlessly long. The pressure on the academic, many digital migrants at best, is to adopt and become expert in as many as possible of these tools, in order to engage their students.

The reality is of course that whilst many of the academics in question (or teachers in the classroom when considering schools) are excellent practitioners face-to-face, the thought of moving online is intimidating and daunting, and faced with this sudden demand, many suffer anxiety, balk at the demand, will leave their employment, or simply turn a blind eye! It needs to be recognised that as with beginning to learn how to teach, we need to give a better guide to educational practitioners, as to what is an acceptable level of online presence at the outset, and then teach them to build on from there. And we also need to recognise that there are times when these early levels are often enough, as we meet the many different needs of all our students. A variety of learning experiences gives the best educational outcomes.

To view the proposed model – drawn on many years of experience in implementing online learning, teaching in the online space, as an online student completing my MBA, and based on current literature, read more …

Proposing a Model of Online Learning

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