Friday, March 7, 2008

what happened in the web conference session 6 March

On Thursday evening five people joined a web conference on Elluminate. We had a lively discussion about quality and evaluation in general, and the topics for week2 and week 3. Yvonne had to whisper for the first part so she did not wake hubby - well it was 6:30 am in the UK. Most people got the hang of the push-to-talk feature but there were a couple of hiccups until people realised you need to let the microphone button go.

Those of you may wish to have a look and listen to the recording. You will need to download Elluminate to access this so be patient. You will be prompted - just make sure you click the pop up window if it appears at the top of your browser.

An interesting point came up when Anupam asked for some suggestions about ways he can find out if his students find the online materials helpful. We talked about how it is hard for a lecturer to obtain honest answers when the students are worried about offending the lecturer; they may worry about their grades being affected, especially if it is a small class. It is often difficult for feedback to remain anonymous. Also we often forget to ask for feedback and carry on regardless.

There are ways to gather feedback during a course or when a new product is introduced, and also at the end of a course; the time when most people seem to ask for input. Helga made the point that it is often easier to get honest feedback on how usable something is, during the development phase rather when the product is finished; perhaps people do not feel as awkward being honest.

Hilary mentioned feeling a bit isolated not having a discussion on something like Blackboard as blog discussion did not seem as interactive. The group had a bit of discussion about this, and Bronwyn asked that people try getting involved in blog discussion by looking at each other's blogs (setting up a RSS feeds such as can help with this) and making sure you tick the email alert box.

Yvonne mentioned that it did take a while to get used to communicating in this way, and lesley explained why group email had been a bit problematic in her experience - nonprofessional use was made of it in some instances. Bronwyn said that some people found communication via list serv email groups hard to manage as it tended to flood their inbox - but there were ways to manage it.

Bronwyn said that if the email alert function is ticked for comments you make on blogs people will find that discussion will occur more naturally; people will be alerted as others post comments to their blogs and can respond. Otherwise people will have another place to have to go to post apart from their blogs.

Of course if people wish to have a discussion away from the blogs, there is also the Wiki discussion area and anyone can start a new forum anytime. At the moment we have introductions still happening on there. So maybe it is time for a discussion around Quality - but make sure you post to your blogs first each week as this is Assignment One and a progressive activity.

Have a great weekend.


oneteachersview said...

just listening to the web conference that you had last week, Lesley, there are other things available outside other than moodle, There is a protocol called Internet Relay Chat, to find out more you can have a look at
There is even a realtime web application if you don't want to download a client.

oneteachersview said...
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oneteachersview said...

There are some moodle learning resources are available @

Also there is a school for learning moodle, this is setup by moodle to help teach students and teachers how to use some of moodles features

oneteachersview said...

To find out if they are enjoying it, there is a number of things that can be done, one of our assessment tools at school is asTTle, where the students have to enter how they are feeling by using a smily face continuum :) :| :(
maybe they could do that when they start their post in a blog, also when students finish their reading you do need to test them, we use a multi-choice, I have done some online courses in the past that had the multi-choice at the end of the chapter, but after a while you start to look at the questions and find the answers, rather than reading the chapter completely.