Today marked another Elluminate session. This time a plenary with our Tutor, a voting activity, a blog grid, then discussions with D.  We had 20 mins to talk (just the two of us) and I fear that D may have felt she had the runt.  Meanwhile I was quite happy to quiz D on info relating to her experiences.

To talk, take notes and then feedback is quite an undertaking, when you are speaking with someone you don’t know. I confess I was a bit fried at the end of the 75 min session and the feedback from the other groups is a bit of blur.

There were no questions so our discussion  ranged quite a bit:

When f2f is compared with online how do the tutoring times compare and is this relevant

  • 16 hours over 9 months, what did that mean in reality, what did it look like on-line.
  • D’s experience that most tutors new to online teaching are surprised by the online workload

The importance of the online tutor

  • Without doubt the H(uman) factor is important

The relevance of comparing f2f with online

  • Are they not different beasts entirely?  Why should we compare them, can we not set the latter free to be judged by its own metrics?

Managing expectations (of students)

  • State work times to avoid having to say “I have been asleep” to a student asking why you haven’t responded at 7pm to a question asked at 11pm.

Training students in online etiquette

  • This is best laid out explicitly in early stages of the course

If I could have f2f would I now want it?

  • I was caught a bit off gaurd by this question, I think the answer is no, it fits with the job, and I’ve got kind of used to it.  On forum light weeks I feel a bit lost.  I have grown to like the reflective forum contributions, even though I am not a great contributor.
  • D talked about the freedom of online for not having to look cool, fit in etc.
  • It’s less easy for one person to be dominant, the quieter ones have a chance to speak up (write up!) and say brilliant things.

I was a bit of a coward and let D feedback as she had taken notes, I was out of it.  Four is probably the elluminate subgroup optimum – speaking listening and notetaking is a bit much for the  humble mortal.

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