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Collaboration between a lecturer and learning technologist to support student transition to and engagement and learning in the synchronous online classroom: having the best of both worlds
Logan, Anna; Stone, Suzanne
The synchronous online classroom is a unique learning space which offers opportunities for exploring new pedagogical approaches in higher education (HE) but also presents many challenges, particularly in transitioning teaching and learning from the face-face to the online learning context. This paper reports the findings of a small-scale study which explored student engagement, interaction and learning in the synchronous online classroom seeking to uncover the affordances and limitations of technological tools to support interaction, teaching and learning. Drawing on data on the perspectives of three voices involved: the lecturer, the student and the learning technologist, the research questions addressed were: What are the experiences and perceptions of students of real time interaction, teaching and learning in the virtual classroom? How can collaboration between a lecturer and learning technologist in the use of pedagogic strategies and technological support facilitate student transition to and engagement in the virtual classroom? A mixed method two-phased approach was used. Phase 1 comprised anonymous online student evaluations and Phase 2 comprised two focus groups one face-to-face and one online with 10 students. Findings from phase 1 suggest that while most participants expressed a preference for the face-to-face classroom, the convenience of the online element was highly salient in enabling them to complete the programme. Some felt that they learned effectively in both contexts and reported that the use of certain strategies enabled them to engage and interact more online than in a face-to-face context. The transition to the online classroom is both cultural and technical and while only a minority of participants require significant technical support many participants will not be familiar with the protocols for attending online classes. Building on Falloon’s (2011) conceptual framework, this study suggests that collaboration between a lecturer and a learning technologist can help students develop the technical, procedural and operational knowledge required to make this transition and thus harness the affordances of the online synchronous classroom. Data from phase two will shed further light on student perceptions of engagement and learning to inform the collaborative design and implementation of pedagogical approaches for quality distance learning in the synchronous online classroom.
Keyword(s): Education; Teaching
Publication Date:
Type: Other
Peer-Reviewed: Unknown
Language(s): English
Institution: Dublin City University
Publisher(s): Valencia, Spain
File Format(s): application/pdf
Related Link(s):,
First Indexed: 2018-04-14 06:06:06 Last Updated: 2018-07-21 06:12:27