Thursday, September 1, 2011

Module 5:Static and Dynamic Technologies

I believe that I have been operating more on the static side of using technology oppose to dynamic.  I do believe that in the future I will be incorporating more technologies that will be interactive for my students.  I am pleased to have learned about many of the technologies that I wasn't introduced to and some, such as wikis, that I now know how to use.  I think that my classes will benefit more as I continue to seek new technologies to help my students in their learning process.

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Saturday, August 27, 2011

Blog 4-Module 4

Technology has changed the face of education in teaching and learning.  Students are using various technologies outside of the classroom on a daily basis.  Finding ways to incorporate these tools in the classroom can enhance teaching and learning.  Tools such as Skype, wikis, blogs, and online chat rooms can be utilized to video conference and offer a platform for students to communicate in a collaborative manner.  The internet coupled with other software programs and websites can provide additional resources for delivering content. Social media sites, email, and texting provide students and instructors the ability to communicate across different time zones and locations instantly.  These tools, when used properly can work well in a learning environment and offer many benefits to those in distance education.

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Sunday, July 17, 2011

Module 3- Blog Post

Assessing Collaborative Efforts
When looking at how to assess individuals in a collaborative learning community, instructors must find new ways to assess students from traditional methods.  Siemens suggests that instructors use one of the four models where students assess their peers, students receive feedback from online communities, educators assess based on student contribution, or educators assess based on metrics from learning management systems (Siemens, 2008).   This allows students to be assessed in a fair manner that is tied to stated outcomes.  Students should also be assessed in terms of individual growth.  According to Siemens (2008), student assessments should be on an individual basis beyond the mark.  This shows how students show progression from where they started and end up.  This type of assessment also allows instructors to be flexible and be fair and equitable to students individually.    Siemens (2008) further states that assessment is not only for the student but it is teaching based that gives the educator feedback and guides for future instruction.
Collaboration in a learning community can sometimes be difficult to achieve.  Communication is essential to ensure all members are aware of what role they must play in completing assignments.  There are some who prefer to work individually and complete assignments alone.  In instances like this, members should consult with the instructor to step in.  Palloff and Pratt (2005) state that instructors may need to intervene in cases of under participation to minimize frustration and any conflict.  Because of the nature of online courses and the lack of F2F interaction, collaboration and participation are integral components to online learning.  As a result, the instructor may assess individuals on their lack of participation. 


Palloff, R. M., & Pratt, K. (2005). Collaborating online: Learning together in community. San      Francisco, CA: Jossey-Bass.
Siemens, G. (2008). Assessment of collaborative learning. Vodocast. Laureate Education, Inc.

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Thursday, June 30, 2011

Elements of Distance Education-Module 2

Elements of Distance Education

Collaborative interaction is one of the key elements of distance education.  The development of new technologies combined with the computer and the Internet have expanded the way we communicate with individuals in the education arena and the workplace.  Distance education allows individuals to collaborate and share experiences on a global level with no regards to time and place.  Online tools such as Skype and other video conferencing devices allow individuals not only the capacity to see one another and hear them with clarity.  Other devices such as online videos and social media websites also provide a platform for individuals to interact.  Siemens (Future of Distance Education, n.d) states distance education also benefits corporations by allowing them to interact with different people in different offices all around the world.  As new technologies continue to emerge and the quality of technology continues to improve, distance education will continue to see exponential growth.

Siemens, G. (n.d.). The Future of Distance Education.

Thursday, June 16, 2011

The Next Generation of Distance Education - Module 1

Distance education is growing fast in education and in the business sectors.  Moller, Foshay, Huett, and Simonson agree that in order to meet the needs of learnes, distance education must evolve in the next generation.  According to Moller, Foshay, and Huett (2008), in order for distance learning to improve, there is a need for more training for instructors and better instructional designs.  According to Simonson (2008), distance education must provide learning experiences with new technologies equivalent to those in face to face environments to achieve learning outcomes. I agree with both of these positions because distance education is becoming the school of choice for k-12 and higher education for many reasons, to include easy accessiblity, flexibility in course selection, and simply convenience.  As a result, instructors need to be trained to effectively design courses to provide meaningful learning experiences similar to the traditional setting.  Appropriate technologies should also be considered to aid learners in achieving learning outcomes.

Moller, L., Foshay, W., & Huett, J. (2008, May/June). The evolution of distance education: Implications for instructional design on the potential of the Web (Part 1: Training and Development). TechTrends, 52(3), 70–75.

Moller, L., Foshay, W., & Huett, J. (2008, July/August). The evolution of distance education: Implications for instructional design on the potential of the Web (Part 2: Higher Education). TechTrends, 52(4), 66–70.

Huett, J., Moller, L., Foshay, W. & Coleman, C. (2008, September/October). The evolution of distance education: Implications for instructional design on the potential of the Web (Part 3: K12). TechTrends, 52(5), 63–67.

Laureate Education, Inc. (Executive Producer). (2008). Equivalency Theory.[Video]. Baltimore, MD: Author.