Role of the Online & Blended Teacher

Role of the Online & Blended Teacher

In Module 1 you were introduced to the role of the online/blended teacher. You examined what it takes to be an online teacher. In Module 7 you will continue to explore the changing role of the online teacher to an online coach.

With an increase in the number of online/blended courses being offered, there is growing concern regarding the quality of online education. Some major concerns are:

  • What is the instructor's role in online education?
  • How will students reach their objectives in the online learning environment?
  • How will effective communication and interaction be established with students in the absence of face-to-face instruction?
  • How will instructors motivate students to learn?
  • What indicators will ensure a quality learning environment?
red apple

Concerns in the blended classroom:

  • How does the instructor integrate face-to-face and online curriculum components?
  • What percentage of the class will be spent face-to-face vs. online?
  • How will expectations in the face-to-face and online environment be effectively communicated?

The online teacher is no longer the person at the head of the class helping students understand the curriculum. The students are in a "virtual" class where the teacher can't readily see when a student doesn't "get it". Therefore, teachers need to acquire a new skill set in order to ensure the following:

  • Are students actively involved?
  • Are they interacting with one another?
  • Do they understand the curriculum, activities and requirements of the course?
  • Are students able to demonstrate their learning in this online medium?

In order for this to be accomplished, the teacher needs to understand the many roles they take on when curriculum is delivered in an online environment. Khan Academy's "Introduction to Blended Learning" addresses how the role of the teacher is changing in blended learning environments.

runner at the starting line

To learn more about student readiness, see the resources below:

Murrieta Valley Unified School District Online Courses - - Student Readiness (Permission for use granted from MVUSD)

Murrieta Valley Unified School District Online Learning Contract (Permission for use granted from MVUSD)

Online Learning Readiness Questionnaire (U.N.C. @ Chapel Hill)

Determining Student Readiness for Online Instruction

Just because students are online does not necessarily mean that they are prepared to be online students. In order to increase student success, it is recommended that a teacher, counselor, or administrator screen students to assess whether they are ready to be an online learner. Reflect back to the Pre-Course Exploration where you took a self-assessment to check your readiness to be an online student. Did your self-assessment indicate that you were ready to be a successful online student? Assessing student readiness, or at least having students become aware of what skills and strategies are necessary, will help them to succeed in an online environment.

Are You Ready To Teach Online?

Complete the Self-Assessment: Preparing for Online Teaching. As you take the self-assessment, keep in mind the factors you believe will contribute to being a successful online teacher. Your results will be displayed at the end of the self-assessment and will be sent to you in an email.

After reviewing your results, do you feel you are ready to teach online?

Murrieta Valley Unified School District Online Courses - - Student Readiness (Permission for use granted from MVUSD)

Murrieta Valley Unified School District Online Learning Contract (Permission for use granted from MVUSD)

"Online Learning Readiness Student Self-Assessment - UNC-Chapel Hill." http://www.unc.edu/tlim/ser/. Accessed 6 Jun. 2017.