Posted by: T Morgan | March 17, 2009

Please take the poll

Posted by: T Morgan | March 16, 2009

Guide to conducting a group chat



The chat tool works best as a one-on-one or a one-to-small-group tool.  It can get very chaotic if there are many students attending the chat so it is useful to think about a chat structure.  Again, communicate the structure with the students so they are aware of the expectations and the procedure.


Handling questions in mult-user chat rooms can be tricky, so it is useful to have some guidelines for students such as:

1.    type Q if you want to ask a question

2.    type A if you want to respond to a question

3.    type C if you have a comment


Some tips for the structure are:


1.    discuss only one topic at a time and establish this in the agenda for the chat

2.    if it gets too “noisy” tell everyone to stop typing



Posted by: T Morgan | March 16, 2009

Guide to conducting a live session

As you are developing your course, it is important to think about the purpose and structure of a live Elluminate session, and to make sure this is communicated in the course information and the course schedule.  If your course is distance, it is important to state in the official Course Outline that live attendance of X number of web conferencing sessions is a requirement and an expectation.


*note—the structure is really a reflection of the pedagogy/learning methodology that you have adopted for your course.



A sample structure ( 1 hour session)


10 min:  welcome, agenda, housekeeping items

30 min: instructor presentation with intermittent Q and A opportunities

10 min:  class brainstorming activity

15 min: specific topics, additional presentation (by instructor and/or students)

5 min:  wrap up, assignment Q and A


Other considerations:


  1. how will you be using the chat box in conjunction with the audio capabilities of Elluminate?  These must be clarified to the students:  eg. You won’t monitor the chat box but other students can answer each other’s questions and help each while you are presenting.
  2. Will you be archiving sessions? 
  3. Will you have a minimum attendance requirement for the sessions. Eg. Mandatory, optional,  or 5/7 sessions. 
  4. What considerations will you make in scheduling sessions?  Eg. Time zones of students, day of week, during work hours or not, by student consensus, etc.
  5. What features will you use?  Desktop sharing, whiteboard, powerpoint, chat tool, polling, etc.       

Posted by: T Morgan | March 16, 2009

5 tips for teaching online

5 Tips for Teaching Online

1.  make your presence known:  the importance of student-instructor and student-student communication

·      interaction creates community

·      students don’t know you’re out there unless you post—short, sweet, and timely

·      treat your course like you treat your email–check often for small amounts of time vs. checking for an hour all at once


 2.  give timely feedback

  •  if you’re going to be busy marking, let students know that you won’t be communicating in the discussion forum as much
  • use the tools to make the job easier and quicker


3.  (re)state and repeat  the obvious when it’s something important

·      online courses have lots of ‘information noise’. A quick discussion post can reiterate something that might already be in the course information, or highlight something important

·      repetition is not only ok, it’s sometimes necessary

 4.  don’t panic

·      things will go wrong…tolerate and embrace the ambiguity

·      reflect, don’t react when students panic


5.  manage your time

·      teaching online can get overwhelming. Be there for the students, but set your boundaries

·      take advantage of the discussion forum as an opportunity for students to help each other—you don’t always have to be the one to respond to all questions.


Posted by: T Morgan | March 16, 2009

There is such a thing as too many links…

It’s good for wikipedia, but not so  great for delivering content in an online course.too-many-links

Posted by: T Morgan | March 16, 2009

Discussion forum activity matrix

This is not a complete list by any means, but might be helpful in thinking about discussion forum activities.


Posted by: T Morgan | December 8, 2008

Welcome to the workshop