An Introduction to the Virtual Classroom

 

Joel Salmon
Joel Salmon

As part of his work with higher education, Joel Salmon consulted with Ivy League universities on marketing and curricular matters. To stay current in the field, Joel Salmon maintained a professional interest in educational trends and technology, including the virtual classroom concept.

Virtual classrooms allow students in an online environment to interact and collaborate with each other and view common videos or presentations. Several features distinguish this technology:

Ease of access. Participants can log into a MOOC (massive open online course) from anywhere in the world, using services such as Coursera. Registration costs are generally lower than for face-to-face classes.

Any-time usage. After presentation, students can play back the entire class, including audio-visual elements, to watch at a more convenient time, or go back to clarify information they missed.

– Built on traditional formats. Virtual classes are essentially lectures plus supporting material, a method with which students are familiar.

Useful extras. In addition to lectures, teachers can make time for discussions, tutorials, and group work. Network connectivity allows participants to consult outside resources.

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