Tuesday, December 7, 2010

From Sage on the Stage to Facilator on the Web

Orginal Post:  February 7, 2010

Well this has really been an enlightening start to this course.  At least this blog I am doing here in my Illinois home and not at McDonalds or searching for a WiFi connection.  It has been interesting dealing with some of the problems that new technology brings.  I have learned about changing my role from "sage on the stage" to being a fascilator in the web room.  I have been trying some of these changes in my face to face classes and the students seem very surprised that they are suppose to be that much of a participant in the class.

The role changes have really been interesting to read about. Both the role of the student and the role I have as a teacher. I know as a teacher I do many of the things done in a web based class in my face to face classes and have never really known that there were names to these roles.  I really like Scot Headley’s comment to “build bridges and highways and then enjoy the journey”. It is true as a faculty you want to help guide discussions and not destroy the infrastructure the students develop thru discussion. This statement is really interesting as was his article.  I feel that if you set up a good course and be sure and let the students know what you expect of them then they will produce.  Set the bar high and they will reach it.
As I read through all the readings in part one I also realized that when you are facilitating an online class you need to really make sure that the class stays on the time line and set specific due dates.  You also need to be sure and let the students have enough time for them to prepare the content.  Then keep them on tract in their discussion session but, don’t be the leader of the discussion just prompt when needed to keep the discussion going.

Competencies were an interesting topic to learn about in the general education area.  Virgil E. Varvel Jr. described a competent individual as “one who effectively and efficiently accomplishes a task in a given context using appropriate knowledge, skills, attitudes, and abilities that have adjusted and developed with time and needs.”  In nursing we have core competencies that we need to meet for the accreditation of our program.  In a nursing program if you aren’t accredited your students are not eligible to sit for the state exam.  Our competencies are given to us by the accrediting body but in the article it refers to competencies from the Illinois State Board of Education.  As I read these competencies they were very similar to the ones we have to meet.  The competencies are divided into administrative role, personal role, technological role pedagogical role and its split into instructional design, delivery and assessment and lastly social roles and abilities.  These are really important to meet in order to be sure you are teaching a good if not exemplary course.  This was really an interesting reading with our accreditation coming up in two years and we are starting to work on placing our NLN competencies in our syllabus this year.

Having our first asynchronous discussion with a student facilitating was really an interesting and good session.  The first student facilitator was really good at presenting the material and keeping an asynchronous discussion going.  Next week is my turn to facilitate the unit and I keep hoping I can present as good a she did.  I’ll write about it in my next blog.  See you then.

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