Teaching with technology

Using online chat to promote effective in-class discussions

Leanne Cameron*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference proceeding contribution

Abstract

Much has been written about the role discussions can play in creating an effective learning environment. However, the difficulties in conducting an in-class discussion in which all students have the opportunity to take part in a meaningful way are well recognised. It may be difficult for a student to feel his/her contribution is integral to the discussion if they are one of 20; shy students are rarely heard from, and controversial content may not attract adequate student contributions. Is it possible for the tutor moderating the discussion to determine those students who are finding the concepts under discussion difficult to understand? Does the opinion of the tutor influence the nature of students' responses? Inclass discussions have been used in tutorials in School of Education courses at Macquarie University to study the set course readings but the course tutors were not convinced of their effectiveness. As firm believers in the value of discussion, the tutors had to find another way to enable everyone to have a voice. This paper reports on the in-class online chat assessment task currently being offered. These discussions successfully encouraged all students to become involved and the students' understanding and engagement with course material improved dramatically.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationProceedings of the 23rd Annual Conference of the Australasian Society for Computers in Learning in Tertiary Education: Who's Learning? Whose Technology?, ASCILITE 2006
EditorsLina Markauskaite, Peter Goodyear, Peter Reimann
Place of PublicationAuckland, New Zealand
PublisherThe University of Auckland and Auckland University of Technology
Pages105-109
Number of pages5
Volume1
ISBN (Print)9781920898564
Publication statusPublished - 2006
Event23rd Annual Conference of the Australasian Society for Computers in Learning in Tertiary Education - "Who's Learning? Whose Technology?" - ASCILITE 2006 - Sydney, NSW, Australia
Duration: 3 Dec 20066 Dec 2006

Other

Other23rd Annual Conference of the Australasian Society for Computers in Learning in Tertiary Education - "Who's Learning? Whose Technology?" - ASCILITE 2006
CountryAustralia
CitySydney, NSW
Period3/12/066/12/06

Keywords

  • Collaborative learning
  • Computer-mediated communication
  • Learning communities
  • Teaching and learning strategies
  • Technologies for marginalised and disadvantaged

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