Week 5 – Teaching Presence

  1. In your own words, define Instructional Presence.

Instructional presence – the role an instructor plays in elearning. This includes the communication and the presentation of the material. The involvement of an instructor can have major influence on the engagement of the students and the success of the course. Developing a safe communication environment between both student-student and student-instructor is crucial.

  1. Name three things that your instructor identifies as contributing to Instructional Presence. Explain why these are, or are not consistent with your definition of Instructional Presence.

Interaction, effective communication, motivation.

I believe all three of these are consistent with my definition. They must all be present in order for students to engage and remain engaged throughout the class. A successful instructor will do this without being overbearing but making his presence known to ensure he is playing his part as instructor.

  1. Who are the researchers most often identified with the construct of “Teaching Presence”?

Carol R. Rodgers, Miriam Raider- Roth and D.R. Garrison

Rodgers and Raider-Roth research and explore teaching presence and the aspects that cause successful teaching presence. “…we need to speak out loud about it and not be embarrassed by he non-technical-rational (Schön, 1983) nature of presence’. (Rodgers & Raider-Roth, 284) I love this quote because it is matter of fact. Elearning is not conventional and it still has lots of growing to do, it is okay to focus on the social and relational aspects of teaching through technology.

D.R. Garrison introduced the three types of presence in teaching presence.

  1. What are the three types of presence that Teaching Presence requires? Name and describe each.

Social – “…the ability to project one’s self and establish personal and purposeful

relationships. The three main aspects of social presence, as defined here, are effective communication, open communication and group cohesion.” (Garrison, 63) Social presence is not only about making relationships, especially considering that takes quite a bit of time, it is about the ability to feel comfortable communicating. Students in an online class must be able to communicate through discussion boards, email, and also be able to work as a team.

Cognitive –“… the exploration, construction, resolution and confirmation of

understanding through collaboration and reflection in a community of inquiry.” (Garrison, 65) It was found that resolution was often difficult to get students to achieve because it was a more difficult process. Students aid each other during the discussion process and by engaging with each other and communicating effectively resolution is reached.

Teaching – Teaching presence is the involvement of the teacher and how the teacher interacts through the course. This type of presence is mainly concerned with validation. Students need to be encouraged and they need confirmation that they are doing assignments correctly. Teaching presence also includes feedback in a timely manner. If an instructor does not understand the balance of teaching presence it can lead to student failure.

Rodgers, C., & Raider-Roth, M. (2006). Teachers and Teaching: Theory and practice. Teachers and Teaching, 12(3), 265-287. Retrieved October 1, 2014.

Garrison, D. (n.d.). ONLINE COMMUNITY OF INQUIRY REVIEW: SOCIAL, COGNITIVE, AND TEACHING PRESENCE ISSUES.

  1. Choose one of the three types of presence named in item #4 and identify ways and instructor can create or improve this type of presence in an online class.

To create teaching presence and instructor must be active in the class. He must clearly state expectations and assignments. Feedback is also extremely important, possibly the most important. Students in elearning classes do no have the f2f opportunity to communicate with the instructor therefore, it is crucial for the instructor to respond promptly to questions and assignments to the students can feel validated and can continue on with their assignments in confidence.

6.Explain how the readings this week (and your own research) connects with the Blackboard discussion.

The blackboard discussion focused on teaching presence and tools that aid in creating it. I found the research to be interesting and I liked how the articles broke it down. As teachers or future teachers of elearning it is important that we are aware of the aspect of elearning. I thought the article Effective Online Communication brought up an important point, the way test is written and interpreted. Just like in text massging converstaions or email, a message can be twisted and taken completely out of context. Verbal/nonverbal cues are extremely important.

  1. Quote your best entry from this week’s Blackboard discussion. Explain why you chose it and what it demonstrates about your understanding, learning process etc.

“Characteristics that make a medium rich vs. lean include the ability to provide rapid two-way exchanges, ability to provide images or video, and audio vs. text only exchanges (Newberry, 2001).”

“I quoted this sentence from Dr. Newberry’s Teaching Presence article because I believe a rich medium is extremely important.  I am currently taking three classes, 2 of which the instructors have provided at least one video of themselves, numerous audio, and a picture, the  third of these instructors has not.  I find it very difficult to connect with that class in general because I don’t “know” the instructor.  It is always the class that is last on my list.  This idea of connection also applies to my peers.  There are certain classmates whose posts I will read first because they have pictures on their profile and I can place a face with their text.

Another practice that I find to be helpful is feedback.  Unpredictable feedback can be frustrating and leave me feeling like I may not be doing my work correctly, which in turn, leads me to hesitate on assignments.  I know on every Monday to check for Dr. Newberry’s feedback.  This gives me confidence in my work so I know whether I need to change something or continue as I have been.

Quality vs. quantity….for me, as a student, I will take short paragraphs that gets to the point over a 3 paragraph response any day.  I have to admit there have been many times I have clicked on a post and quickly made my way to the next because it was soooooo long and sooooo wordy, and the jargon that was used made me cringe.  I believe that it doesn’t matter how knowledgeable you are or how intelligent the listener is, nobody wants to hear a ramble, much less read one.  The article that touched on quality vs quantity will not open for some reason so I do not have a direct quote.  If I can get to it I will add some quotes from it.”

I chose this post because as a student I think the prompt allowed me to evaluate my experiences with elearning this quarter. I was able to look at how the classes are being taught and think about what is working and what is not, and what makes the difficulty of an elearning environment a little less tedious.

  1. Identify the student you think was the most important participant in the Blackboard discussion. Explain why and provide at least one quote from that student’s contributions to the Blackboard discussion.

Carolyne Obonyo: I think she did a fantastic job of going above and beyond. She offered tons of great resources and initiated great conversation.

I found this topic interesting and went further to read about tools that can support video feedback. I have to create time and try using some of them. Here are some which I found out:

  • Comment Bubble.
  • Google drive apps like VideoNot.es, WeVideo, Wideo.co & Kaizena.
  • Web based screencasting tools like screencastify.
  • Explain Everything, Evernote & The  Live Scribe Pen.

Another alternative to provide response and still make it interactive is by use of screencasts and audio.

Feedback via screencast: Jing is a free screen capture software which can be used to record anything you can see on your computer screen and record corresponding audio. The advantage of using this tool is that the student can see his/her Word document and listen to the explanations as the tutor highlights and corrects a sentence or a paragraph. It also allows the instructor to give more explanations without writing a long paragraph.

Some advantages of using Jing:

  • Very little initial training needed. It is easy to use and the recording does not add to the file size as the link can be copied and pasted in the student’s script.
  • It allows the instructor to provide more in-depth explanations while correcting on the student’s Word document.
  • Students can easily follow the explanations provided on screen.
  • This type of feedback could help with pronunciation and might be useful for students with dyslexia.
  • Students like listening to the tutor’s voice hence its more personal and memorable.

It is free.

  1. Reflect on what you have learned this week. What have you learned that has the potential to inform or influence you or your practice of online learning going forward? Explain why.

I learned a lot this week about the instructors influence in online learning. The teaching presence of an instructor can make or break the success of a class. I believe as an instructor that it will take time to perfect the course of action and the necessary tools to make the class successful and it may not work for every class. Each class will have it’s own dynamic and the delivery and upkeep may have to be tweaked.

I like that we explored the place of video in elearning. It may not be the easiest way of giving feedback but I think it has it’s place and is important to build a relationship with the students.

Advertisements

12 thoughts on “Week 5 – Teaching Presence

  1. perk0911

    I wanted to comment about the statement “Rodgers and Raider-Roth research and explore teaching presence and the aspects that cause successful teaching presence. “…we need to speak out loud about it and not be embarrassed by he non-technical-rational (Schön, 1983) nature of presence’. (Rodgers & Raider-Roth, 284) I love this quote because it is matter of fact. Elearning is not conventional and it still has lots of growing to do, it is okay to focus on the social and relational aspects of teaching through technology.” Especially important in this idea is your point regarding the fact that eLearning is not conventional and that it still has lots of growing to do. So much of the literature and studies seem to be focused around what CMC, eLearning is Not as compared to f2f, rather than on its own intrinsic values, characteristics and strengths. It is almost as if we are trying to infuse portions of f2f into eLearning that only work well when done f2f. If we tried more often than not to accept eLearning techniques for what they are I think we will be much better off, rather than attempting to reverse engineer items from a lecture-based, f2f course. ear modality has its place and has its purpose as well as a number of students who will flourish within them, especially as we begin to more and more millenials come into academia.

    Like

    Reply
  2. elearningcsusb

    Something you said, “I thought the article Effective Online Communication brought up an important point, the way test is written and interpreted. Just like in text massging converstaions or email, a message can be twisted and taken completely out of context. Verbal/nonverbal cues are extremely important.” made me think of the added complication of interpretation for second language learners. Consider that none of us have the non-verbal cues to recognize if we are using an idiomatically phrase or particularly challenging grammatically written sentence that a ESL student might not understand. Even though the asynchronous communication allows Second Language Learners added time to translate/interpret, I imagine that the sheer quantity of written discourse must be overwhelming.

    Like

    Reply
    1. wearewonderstruck Post author

      That’s a great point! I know I can get overwhelmed, so I can’t imagine being a second language learner trying to decipher these cues. I wonder, although odd for english speakers, if it would be helpful the syllabus included cue descriptions. i.e.: BOLD = important information

      Like

      Reply
  3. Margarita

    I appreciate that you shared Carolyn’s post because I missed it! Video and audio messages is something I would like to experiment myself because as you stated, it helps build a relationship with our students. One of the tools I have downloaded is screencastomatic through Google apps. I haven’t used it yet, but it is also free. It has the screen casting feature, which can be highly useful for an online instructor.

    Like

    Reply
  4. Carole S Obonyo

    Hi Rachel,
    Was trying to find out if you have posted Session 6, but since I didn’t read your
    Session 5, I have read and am glad you selected my posting to be informative.

    Regards,
    Carolyne

    Like

    Reply
  5. hyesu19888

    Hi Rachel! I always enjoy reading your post. And I also chose Carol’s post she provided me with good information like Jing. I think this tool is useful to both of instructors and students in the elearning environment. Thank you for sharing your post!

    Like

    Reply
  6. elearningcsusb

    Hi Rachel,
    You made such a great point about “Quality vs. quantity”.
    The first time I went to college I could barely reach the minimum words and now I struggle not to ramble. I know it is laziness- it is easier to write everything that pops into my head rather than outline my points and narrow the info. Your post was a good reminder for me to watch out for this.
    Christen

    Like

    Reply
    1. wearewonderstruck Post author

      That’s totally me! I’m a woman of few words. I often stare at my work and think “there’s no way this is sufficient.” Luckily, I have been 100% wrong about that this quarter. But honestly, you always have helpful information and I often wonder what the discussion board would like if you weren’t there to get us started!

      Like

      Reply

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s