ION | Illinois Online Network


Question 4

In what way(s) does the facilitator's level of participation in the VC affect a student's attitude? Can a facilitator participate too much in the VC? Why or Why not?

The facilitator can affect a student's attitude by his/her level of participation. The facilitator has a key role:

The facilitator must give timely, sincere feedback to students' responses as well as to their class performance. Asking further questions of the learners challenges their thinking and show them that achieving the learning objectives is important to the facilitator. This helps to develop the desire to learn and to succeed in the course.

Dialog in the Virtual Classroom
The facilitator should facilitate the dialog and not dominate it. In the Virtual Classroom, most of the learning comes from the interaction among the students. If the facilitator dominates the discussion, then the level of synergy in the Virtual Classroom will decrease. The learners will not not jump in and respond to questions, rather they will wait for the instructor to make the first move. The attitude of self-discovery of knowledge will change to the spoon feed role unfortunately typical in many lecture-based onground classes. Online instructors should create a tone of respect for the learner, and operate more on a equal basis. The question should be, "You are here to learn, how can I help you?"

Instructional Design
The facilitator can affect the attitude in the Virtual Classroom through the design of discussion questions pertaining to the course material. The facilitator should create the questions at a knowledge level which is not too high to frustrate the learner and develop the attitude that this is too hard, I will never get this, or at a level too low creating the attitude, this is too easy, why bother! In either situation there is the chance that the synergy level will decrease in the class and/or the student may not complete the assignments or even the course.