Best Practices For Synchronous Video: Teaching Techniques Using Web Conferencing Platforms
- Teachers are being asked to redesign their courses to replace in-person classes with live video-based classes using Zoom, WebEx, or other platforms with little if any training.
- Teachers don’t have the luxury of carefully spending many months redesigning their courses for the new modalities being used for Fall 2020. But courses must be redesigned!
The potential for promoting student learning is high if teachers avoid the pitfalls of thinking they can replace their in-person classes with online video sessions instead of capitalizing on the unique potentials of this new modality.
Replacing in-person classes with video-based classes using Zoom, WebEx, or other platforms might seem to require only minor changes to course design and pedagogical approach. However, the surface-level similarities between in-person classes and online video-based classes can lead to misplaced confidence that teachers and students can do the same things they’ve always done. As many of us learned during the Spring semester 2020, it’s not nearly that easy. Succeeding in teaching and learning using video-based meetings requires reconsiderations of course design, use of the content, and the teaching and learning dynamic.
This webinar offers participants a design template and conceptual framework they will use to analyze the same course in various modalities. With this foundation in design concepts and terminology, we will focus on issues related explicitly to several variations of the Real-Time-Remote (RTR) modality that replace in-person classes with video-based classes. Specific considerations of RTR design will include how many in-person meeting times are being replaced and how this choice impacts the need to utilize asynchronous online teaching and learning to allow teachers to capture all the teaching time they need to help students succeed in learning.
With these foundational, theoretical concerns in mind, the webinar will turn to more practical issues. Participants will explore best practices for utilizing online web-based meeting tools to drive student learning. We will confront the problem that lectures don’t work well in a video-based modality, explore ways to make the most of lectures when they are necessary, and then consider many non-lecture uses for live video-based sessions to promote student learning. Such as facilitated problem solving, small group activities, interactive discussion, formative assessment techniques, peer reviews, student presentations, feedback for students, student-student collaboration, office hours, etc.. Participants will explore some of the possibilities for using break-out rooms during video classes to engage students in meaningful work and to allow teachers to assess and facilitate active learning.
The webinar will also address important logistical issues with managing video-based classes and review ideas for addressing RTR-specific course policies, class management issues, and student accommodation needs along with other things that teachers might need to consider and address in the course syllabus.
Participants will be encouraged to share their own experiences with RTR teaching and brainstorm and draft ideas for RTR courses.
- Become familiar with a course design template and general set of course design concepts and terms
- Analyze various course modalities using this template and design concepts and compare and contrast these modalities
- Apply the design template, in detail, to several variations of the “real-time-remote” (RTR) modality that replaces in-person classroom instruction with online video-based instruction
- Explore the connections between RTR classes and online classes and realize that many variations of the RTR modality will require substantial asynchronous online teaching and learning to complement the live video meetings
- Entertain the idea that it is productive to think about all RTR classes as being online classes with “value-added” live video-based sessions
- Analyze and evaluate the argument that lecturing doesn’t work well in the RTR modality. So teachers should avoid lecturing during the live video time or minimize lectures as much as possible
- Explore some best practices for lecturing via video-based meetings
- Consider many non-lecture uses for live video-based teaching to promote student learning such as small group activities, facilitated discussion, formative assessment techniques, peer reviews, student presentations, providing feedback, student-student collaboration, office hours, etc
- Understand the role of independent student “prework” in setting up successful video-based classes
- Explore some of the possibilities for using break-out rooms during video classes to engage students in meaningful work and to allow teachers to assess and facilitate active learning
- Review ideas for addressing RTR-specific course policies, class management and logistical issues, student accommodation needs, and other items that a teacher needs to consider and address in the course syllabus
- Brainstorm and draft ideas for their own RTR course using the standard template and design concepts
- Share ideas and ask questions
- Faculty (fulltime, adjunct, campus, online)
- Faculty Development
- Any educator interested in learning more about best practices for teaching with video
Eric Salahub has been at Front Range Community College in Fort Collins Colorado since 1999 where he teaches philosophy and serves as an instructional coach. In his coaching role, Eric has worked with hundreds of teachers helping them improve their craft in face-to-face, online, and hybrid classes. Over the past 5 years, Eric's main teaching and research focus is in Active Learning and he is the co-creator and director of the Active Learning Institute. In 2018 Eric was named the Colorado Community College's Outstanding Faculty and in 2019 he was awarded the Jerome Wartgow award for Excellence in Teaching with Technology.
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