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Events

Designing Significant eLearning and Blended Learning Experiences: Training Tomorrow's eTeachers

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2009-07-22 02:00 pm EDT

Presenter: Rebekah Grow & Linda Ralston, University of Utah

Higher education is being transformed by the millennial learner, learning technologies, and the evolution of the Learning Paradigm with a different mission, purpose, criteria for success and learning structures (Barr & Tagg, 2000). Ken Bain challenges teachers to create "authentic tasks that arouse curiosity and become intrinsically interesting," (p. 99) engage students to reason and ask probing and insightful questions. This session will present a case study of the integration of Wimba in an online collaborative e-learning experience with an on-site institute.

The institute incorporated a series of elearning sessions conducted via Wimba and Blackboard Vista designed to prepare participants for an on-campus conference featuring hands-on training with camera and audio enhanced Wimba and PowerPoint technology. The conference was followed by several on-line learning and discussion sessions enhanced by Wimba technology.

The teaching institute's purpose was to illustrate the need to examine how e-learning, service-learning, and traditional classroom techniques might be blended to create a positive elearning environment enhanced by Wimba technology. The workshop was designed to challenge participants as students, educators and scholars while examining the changing paradigm shifts from instruction to learning and from traditional to innovative elearning.

A total of seven sessions were incorporated in the blended conference workshop to deliver the following learning outcomes:
1. Describe the characteristics of a natural critical learning experience and how it might look in an online environment.
2. Develop a shared understanding of what each of us considers "significant" or "profound" learning through a collaborative learning experience.
3. Understand that learning can take place in a range of contexts, that each context has its strengths and limitations, and that the process of course design involves maximizing the learning potential of the instructional context.
4. Understand yourself as a learner and eteacher, as well as, consider how you can address issues unique to the elearning environment.
* Analyze your learning style strengths and challenges (and those of your students); and
* The strengths and challenges of the medium in which learning is talking place.
5. Develop a minimum of two e-learning lessons designed to generate a natural critical learning experience and integrate into a collaborative and conversational framework.
* Provide opportunities for fellow institute participants to provide feedback for improvements for the lessons.
6. Experience opportunities that an online learning environment provides for you to let students know who you are and to communicate your expectations for learning.
* Understand how to facilitate discussions that deepen student engagement and advance participants' critical thinking skills.
* Consider the relationship between your spoken voice and your written voice, looking for ways to better express yourself in an online environment.