Moderating Learner-Centered E-Learning: Problems and Solutions, Benefits and Implications
Curtis J. Bonk (Indiana University, USA), Robert A. Wisher (US Department of Defense, USA) and Ji-Yeon Lee (University of South Carolina, USA)
Copyright: © 2008
In response to the changes taking place in collaborative online learning environments, this chapter discusses how the simultaneous emergence of collaborative technologies and the learner-centered movement impacts the role of the online instructor. As part of this review, research related to online moderation and facilitation of learning is summarized. It is suggested that online instructors need to facilitate student generation and sharing of information, while assuming the role of learning coach or mentor to provide needed leadership and guidance. Finally, ten key benefits and implications of e-learning, as well as ten potential problems and solutions, are summarized to assist e-learning decision makers and instructors. Among the benefits include the permanence of the online text, the availability of online mentors, and the fostering of student idea generation. Some consistent online learning problems include learner confusion, lack of justification of student reasoning, and difficulties in grading online content. Instructors are provided with guidelines on how to take advantage of the benefits while limiting or overcoming the problems.