Feb 4, 2008

Thanks for Your Participation - Recording of Week 3 Live Informal Group-Meeting Is Here!

Hi! We'd like to thank you so much for your participation in our third live group-meeting that was carried out in the Webheads LearningTimes vOffice (Link), on Sunday. Debby, Jen, and I, Buthaina, would like to thank, especially Sylwia (Link), Mona, (Link) Mark (Link), Lorena (Link), and Hala (Link) for their great contribution to the live discussion through sharing ideas on ways to integrate RSS technology in their ESP classes. It was, indeed, such an informative and fun session.

For those of you who couldn't make it to our live meeting of Week 3, the recording of the live discussion can be found at Recordings wiki page.

After you finish viewing and listening to the recording, please share your ideas on ways you plan to use RSS technology for your ESP classes. You could do that either by adding your ideas to this wiki page, or through a post to your blog. Your contribution is greatly appreciated.

Thank you for your collaboration and cooperation!

EVO 08 Web 2.0 for ESP Team
PS This draft entry was saved and will be published when connection is restored here at my end in the Gulf Region! Thank you for your patience. (Buth)


New York Lori said...

Hello! I can't attend the live group meetings because I teach on Saturdays. I didn't realize you had changed the date until after it was too late.

However, I did listen to the recording of the meeting. It was fascinating that you were all communicating live from different points in the world.

I did have a slight anxiety attack over the sound problems you were experiencing. That's my big fear about using technology in my courses. What happens when something doesn't work? What happens when you work so hard to prepare an incredible lesson and it all goes up in smoke due to technological difficulties?

Buth: why didn't you just switch over to text messaging when you were having problems with your audio? Couldn't you have just given the lecture by text? If that had happened in a real class, how would you have dealt with the problem?



Buthaina Alothman said...

Hi Lori, and thanks for your good questions.

Question (1):
why didn't you just switch over to text messaging when you were having problems with your audio?

Actually, I did use the direct messaging text-window at some points but couldn't at other times as the technical problem occurred in my end had my window freeze! (The technical glitches in my end was caused by the current major problem in an internet cable in the Middle East Region, as you know).

Question (2):
If that had happened in a real class, how would you have dealt with the problem?

A similar problem, even worse, had actually happened to me during a virtual multiple venue session using elluminate in 2006. This is why we have to include a plan B (and sometimes a plan C) whenever we are creating a plan for a virtual class. Logistics is a crucial issue that we really need to consider whenever planning a live online class or session. In my case, I had Sypecast as plan B, but it also didn't work due to a proxy issue at our venue in a c-lab here in Kuwait; so, I had to use plan C that was a Skype conversation, and it worked! I videotaped the skype conversation and had uploaded and published it on my Blip.tv, so that some of the learners who couldn't join the session from their offices or homes were able to view and listen to the videotaped presentations. You are welcome to view one of these video clips of Dennis Oliver on Presentation Skills here.

As you can see, disasters could happen online just as they could happen in a face-to-face situation! In September 2007, the air condition in my classroom suddenly stopped when the temperature was about 50 Celsius! How would you have dealt with such a problem, Lori? Therefore, we always need to consider technical problems or logistical issues.

Lori, for more detailed information on planning successful live online classes, I recommend Learning in Real Time , by Jonathan Finkelstein, also see Synchronous Training, by Jenniffer Hofmann.

Hope this helps!
PS If you wish to carry this discussion further, please do as I'm really interested in the topic and your questions.