Laureen Kodani | ePortfolio
What's your preferred online learning environment? Asynchronous or synchronous? I consider this class a hybrid of both. We meet synchronously once a week and complete assignments asynchronously throughout the week. Instructional strategies for online courses have evolved over the last decade. Learning styles vary for each person and these differences must be taken into consideration when designing online instruction. Our reading material focused on the comparison of asynchronous and synchronous online learning environments. We have been assigned to teams and experienced moderating an online learning environment using a Web 2.0 audio-conferencing tool called Blackboard Collaborate. Our group met last Thursday, in Blackboard Collaborate, to discuss the reading material, establish a strategy for completing the assignment, and schedule a follow-up meeting. As it turns out, the session was quite short and we decided to do our work asynchronously using an online document in Google Docs. It is working out well for our team members. 
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We will be posting our synthesized summary of the readings in a class wiki page soon. We read about the R2D2 Model, read, reflect, display, and do. This method addresses the diverse learners in online courses, their preferences, varied Internet skill levels, and multi-generational backgrounds. We also read about the effects of audio-conferencing. Learners are generally more satisfied with Web tools that enable a more interactive and engaging environment. All of the reading made me wonder about my personal preferences. I have taken many online courses, some were completely asynchronous and some were a hybrid. I feel comfortable in either situation, however, I do appreciate the social aspect of a synchronous course. I am looking forward to reading the summaries of my peers who add value to my learning experiences!!

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