Email lists
  • Concept
    Allows a lecturer to communicate with all others such as a class through a single message


  • Operational prerequisites
    Identify the community: Is the list to be open or restricted? Is the list open-ended or does it have definite goals?
    Publicise the list to the group.
    Stimulate discussion: If contribution to the list is not already a compulsory element of the course/program, students should be encouraged to contribute to promote active rather than passive learning.


  • Asynchronous Computer Mediated Communication (CMC) or networked communities
  • Concept
    Allows group interactions independent of time and geography, while maintaining the structure of a discussion without user intervention


  • Models of participation
    Noticeboard:Participants have read-only access to an area where a lecturer, for example, can post messages.
    Question and answer: Students can ask for help from the lecturer or from each other. The dialogue is typically problem-oriented, allowing the lecturer to identify the "real" problems with the course, and to address these in class or tutorial time, and, subsequently, in course redesign.
    Electronic debate: This model involves a proposer for and against a motion, "to set the scene", followed by general debate where all students are encouraged to participate.
    Electronic seminar: This discursive model works well in a typical on-campus undergraduate course where students are all working through course material at a similar pace. (It is not well-suited to distance learning programs, for example, where students may be at different points in the course material.) Discussion may be initiated by an appointed student in turn or by whoever is first online.
    Collaborative learning: For example, on design; through role-play; to coordinate tasks; and to collaborate on tasks to achieve a shared goal
    Global links:Enables the invitation of "visiting speakers"; and for student exposure to other global resources


  • Operational prerequisites
    Clear articulation of educational purpose by the lecturer
    Student understanding of the need to use CMC if the system is going to be meaningful
    Articulation of the benefits to teaching and learning
    Provision of initial training in system use, including guidance to good practice, how to contribute; and of continuous technical support throughout the course involving CMC
    Avoidance of information overload
    Use of specific item headings to clarify the purpose (and indicate duration) of an item
    Provision of guidance about contributions on items
    Establishment of a cohesive group with an identifiable leader/facilitator with easy and reliable access to the network.


  • Electronic interaction - choices in course design section

    Potential advantages/disadvantages

    Advantages May increase participation May increase student involvement (because of time independence)Encourages peer-tutoring and peer-learning Encourages a student-centred approach Encourages deep understanding ...

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