Coordination and Teacher Development in an Online Learning Environment
CALICO Journal Volume 23, Number 3, ISSN 0742-7778
This paper shares some of the experiences in online coordination and teacher development which have emerged in the English Language Department at the "Universitat Oberta de Catalunya". The advantages and disadvantages of coordination in an asynchronous computer-mediated environment form the backdrop to those issues which we consider to be vital, both for the success of online language courses and in the training and support of online instructors. Among the issues discussed are the course coordinators' role in developing awareness of the specific needs of the online learner, encouraging teacher reflection and the construction of knowledge on new pedagogical approaches inherent in online learning, and promoting a sense of community among online teachers. Specific examples of coordinating activities developed within the English Department will be examined, such as face-to-face meetings, training of new teachers, reference documents for teachers, coordinators' feedback on teachers' work in the classroom, and online discussions of pedagogical issues. These all play their part in helping educators to deliver online courses "to learn from the experience of others and to encourage and evaluate educational innovation" (Gooley & Lockwood, 2001, p. 12). (Contains 7 figures and 2 notes.)
Ernest, P. & Hopkins, J. (2006). Coordination and Teacher Development in an Online Learning Environment. CALICO Journal, 23(3), 551-568.