• Online education has promoted the growth of new methodologies, mostly asynchronous in nature, and revolving around expertise in creating pre-loaded content, and manipulating email, forums for communication, and designing and marking asynchronous assessment tasks
  • Latterly the evolution of virtual classrooms has some fearing a return to a teacher-centric transmission model of education.
  • Immediacy of synchronous environments: this appeals to more social learners, those who are 'field-dependent' (ie require a degree of structure), and those for whom the anytime/any place approach is just a handy excuse for not doing it!

Multiple Uses of Virtual Classrooms

  • lectures (the old transmission model)
  • allows different channels for processing information (text, audio, visual)
  • ability to display multiple modes
    • lecture
    • discussion/collaboration
    • slides (text/graphics)
    • websites
    • application sharing
  • Guest lecturers
  • student presentations
  • unite f2f and distance students
  • availability of recording/archives

How do you teach effectively in these environments?


  1. What makes a good face to face teacher?
  2. If I just talked without pause for 7 minutes, without reference to any visual material or asking questions how would you feel?

page created 27/4/05