In a post on February 21, 2009, I wrote about a new book out called Law School 2.0. I read it at that time and it influenced my thinking about the use of technology here at the law school.
A recent comment by Professor Lynch to a post on the Best Practices blog mentioned this book again in relation to our creation of an online course.
It inspired me to re-read Law School 2.0.
The first time I read it, I focused on the chapters about laptops in the classroom, podcasting, and student response systems. This time, I concentrated predominantly on wikis and the use of online pedagogy to teach law.
One important thing I gleaned:
After you set an educational goal for each module of a course, you then select the technology that supports the goal the most effectively.
Different technologies are used for different activities because the learning objectives to be met are different.
To share knowledge offered in the classroom through the Socratic method, in an online course, a PowerPoint presentation with audio is an effective tool.
Similarly, a narrated presentation with embedded quizzes is a great way to make sure students are engaged and learning.
To encourage classroom interaction and discussion, TWEN’s discussion forum works well, especially if the professor posts questions that relate to course materials and reading assignments and requires the students to read and respond to other students’ postings.
Another tool where students can interact with each other and share knowledge is the Wiki. Students are able post information to a central location and edit and make changes to that content.
Other tools that can be used to stimulate engagement are: live discussions, online polls, online quizzes, synchronous classes via Adobe Connect or other webconferencing tool.
Matching goals and technology is obviously important for online courses, and it is important for face-to-face classes, as well.