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  • Teaching on the web with Web 2.0 tools
  • Posted By:
  • Jan R
  • Posted On:
  • 28-May-2009
  • With the advent of computers, the virtual web has taken over the world. It has permeated into every nook and cranny of the world. Hence schools are not far behind. When power point was first introduced, it was a huge thing. And if you knew power point, you were very tech savvy.

    Only higher class students gave power point presentations or it was the work of the corporate. But today with Web 2.0 tools, Internet tools are making in roads into higher education. It will help to create a close knit social and collaborative environment for learning for students.

    Web 2.0 is not something that refers to using the new era of Internet. Here the students will not just remain the ones to consume information but also the ones to create and distribute information over the web. This is possible with the easy tools and softwares available now. This easy access over the Internet has opened many doors and students can connect themselves and communicate with others over the web in different time zones and remote spaces. This may be called social learning. This can definitely enhance the learning phase.

    There are various tools used for social learning that Web 2.0 takes the form of:

    Blogs- blogs are actually the short of web logs and act as an online journal which can be owned by many people at once. You could write anything here you wish to write about. The readers can leave behind a comment or a message or a text link or another blog link. In return the owner of the blog may browse through these links. A blog can have texts, links and image. You can also load videos.

    Another way of gather information is to do it through wikipedia. It is a free online encyclopedia which helps to generate and validate information. Pod casting is another method. Here a series of digital files can be made to listen or see which maybe useful to everyone.

    A new term Mashups is used to define something like a web portal. It is a new loosely defined term for content aggregation. Popular examples of this are google maps or Diggs, Rss feeds etc. the best way to stay connected these days is through social networking sites and through online communities. Some of the popular ones are Facebook, Orkut, linked in and twitter. Through these you not only stay connected but are updated about your peers’ day to day activities etc.

    Another way of social learning can be done through group mails using yahoo or rediff groups. One particular person can post a query which will be delivered to everyone in the group. Therefore, whoever can help to provide an answer may do so and similarly everyone will receive it.

    There are still many question raised on whether learning can be entirely done on the web? How valid can this be?  The web of course has an answer for this too. To completely study online one will have to adapt to embrace the technology in the Blended learning model which is a blend of online environment and a one to one class room environment. These solutions are cost effective and easy to manage. Many students and teachers can use this at the same time and also students who are situated in far off areas away from learning centers can also benefit from these as they can stay connected. Tests, examinations and assignments can be conducted over the Web 2.0 tools easily.

    Therefore, if you have not given a thought to something like this before, you may want to try it out now. It is fast becoming an appealing way to conduct studies.


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