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Distance Ed Class Reflections

Post your reflections from the distance ed class of 3/19 here at the end of class. As a reminder, here are the following 4 prompts you can reflect upon. Although you only need to reflect on 1, if the mood strikes you, I encourage you to post further reflections in your OWN blogs.

  1. One of the criticisms levied against distance ed courses is the difficulty teachers face in establishing a sense of community among remotely located participants. What strategies might an instructor employ to foster a sense of community?

  2. “Think of a class you have taught or are currently teaching. If you were to move 50% to 100% of the class time to an online format, what would the change require or involved? How would it require you, as a teacher, to change or adapt?” (Sánchez-Serrano’s, 2008, p. 173)

  3. According to Nancy, one of the Spanish language distance education teachers surveyed by Sánchez-Serrano’s (2008), “the online curriculum should be designed to match, as closely as possible, the needs of the environment and of the students, while not attempting to imitate its face-to-face counterparts as the perfect model” (p. 157).How should a curriculum for online language instruction differ from a curriculum for face-to-face language instruction?

  4. Reflecting on the group project you just completed, what are some of the greatest challenges instructors would face in attempting to set up an international telecollaboration in a face-to-face language class?


Mar. 20th, 2009 03:47 am (UTC)
Response to #1
I was thinking one of the strategies an instructor might use to encourage a sense of community would be to use the social networking websites such as Facebook or Myspace. Since some people may be reluctant in sharing their personal information, they can create a separate account just for the language class and put in only the information they want to share with the rest of the class. A group can be created where all the students can join to discuss class objectives, tasks, assignments and projects.
Upon furthering my search, I found that there are many other social networking sites where you can build your own social network (http://www.techcrunch.com/2007/07/24/9-ways-to-build-your-own-social-network/ ), however, Ning stand out as an ideal place where an instructor may develop a social network for a class that is held remotely. Check out http://www.crunchbase.com/company/ning to read more about Ning and also see a video that demonstrates Ning’s Service. I’m pretty excited about the find and perhaps our class can try it out! What do you think?
Mar. 30th, 2009 09:34 pm (UTC)
Re: Response to #1
I've just recently discovered Ning myself. It was being used by a number of teacher educators at CALICO. Perhaps, as part of your final course project, you might consider utilizing Ning.


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