Learning Centered Technology

Technology for the Educator

Creating Quality Online Courses: Course Technology

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Course Technology

It may sound funny to discuss technology integration in an online course, because in and of itself the online class is technology. When we talk about technology in the online class, we are discussing technology outside of the realm of the Learning Management System Technology and that takes a little skill.  Technology integration is more than just throwing up a variety of tools and expect students to be engaged by the flashiness. Technology must be used to support the course learning objectives. Technology integration is successful when the use of technology is:

  • Routine and transparent
  • Accessible and readily available for the task at hand
  • Used in support the learning objectives
  • Promote learner engagement and active learning
  • The technologies are current
  • Links are provided to privacy policies for all external tools

Many different types of technology exist for the online classroom, but again you must use it in a way that promotes the learning objectives of your course. Following is a partial list of tools you may find helpful in your online classroom:

  • Game-Based Learning and Assessment
  • Interactive Whiteboards
  • Student Response Systems
  • Web-Based Projects, Explorations, and Research
  • Podcasts, Videos, or Slideshows
  • Collaborative Online Tools like Wikis
  • Social Media
  • Discussion boards
  • Webinars

You can use a variety of these tools, but keep them relevant. For example, video in your classroom is perfectly acceptable, but asking a student to watch an hour-long video that you recorded during your last lecture may not be so wise. Usually an hour-long lecture is filled with a lot of dead space and illegible content. Videos should be edited and all irrelevant information removed to create manageable chunks. These chunks allow the viewer to absorb the important bits of information relevant to the course objectives while not wasting time watching things of no value. In addition to chunking the information, you will need to make sure all content is accessible to all students, as in ADA compliant.

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