LRNT 528 Final 3-2-1 Blog Post

Three (3) initial thoughts about digital facilitation from original blog post:

  1. Online/digital learning experiences allow for learners to learn “on the go”
  2. The level of student participation in an online course community varies
  3. It’s important to be clear about facilitator presence at the beginning of an online course/learning experience


These initial thoughts have been confirmed through my course experience.  There is flexibility with online learning experiences that allows learners who may not be able to dedicate set times the ability to access an educational experience.  The level of student participation will vary depending on many factors. Privacy concerns (sharing online) and the comfort level with that is perhaps a generational issue but there are still some of us out there that are not to keen on sharing online. Facilitator presence really is set at the beginning of the course and provides


Three final thoughts:


  1. Designing online courses using lesson plan or equivalent informed by a framework/learning theory is just as important as in face-to-face courses.
  2. Clear expectations in communication and discussion forums reduce learner confusion and lead participants to stay on topic.
  3. A facilitator needs to be ready to adapt discussion forums since unexpected responses may lead the conversation in a way that was not anticipated by the facilitator.

Two (2) Initial Questions about digital facilitation

  1. How do you determine the appropriate level of facilitated/instructor presence for individual context/situation?
  2. How to strike the right balance in creating a supportive online course community regarding the expectation of active participation when not all learners choose to participate as much as others?

The answer to both questions based on my course experience is clear expectations, (perhaps a clear rubric) and an openness to be flexible and motivating.

Two final questions:

  1. If students are taking more than one online course at a time, how do you balance best practice regarding participation in discussion forums and potential learner burn out?
  2. How do you balance the need to design/scaffold learning content in advance with being flexible during the facilitator of a course?

Initial Metaphor

My initial metaphor had to do with my personal frustration with forum discussion posts. There seems to be a never ending catch-up with drafting initial posts or responses (facilitator or learner). But is seems to be the current accepted practice to replicating face to face discussion.

Final Metaphor

I surprised myself with my willingness to participate in each individual group discussion posts as I participated more than I normally do with instructor lead discussions. I think what I had in mind was reciprocity so that classmates would feel more inclined to participate in my group’s discussions. This goes to show the effectiveness of developing social presence in learning online.

One thought on “LRNT 528 Final 3-2-1 Blog Post

  1. That is a very interesting observation at the end, Shelly, as it speaks to some of the powerful motivating factors that a well-developed community can have on learners. Participating to help support the other learners in hopes that they will support you. I love the concept – and the practice – of reciprocity, which is much easier to achieve when there are strong social relationships in the mix.

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