Use of Skype In the Online Doctoral Classroom

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Session Description
Clear communication is key in educational settings. The implementation of Skype in online classroom provides a venue for clear communication. Implementation begins with an initial post from the instructor during the classroom set up by posting their Skype name with instructions as to how to download the free software. Students are encouraged to do this at the start the course in order to be in communication with the instructor and fellow classmates. The use of Skype in the classroom has proven to be an effective means of communication that helps learners from all over the world feel connected. When teaching in an online venue a tool such as Skype is important allowing learners in this environment to feel a connection with classmates. Creating this “real life” connection for students causes them to be successful enjoying the learning process. Skype allows for seamless transformation of knowledge. Expertise on the part of the professor to implement Skype into the classroom is paramount. Use of with voice and video is best so that the students can actually interact with their professor. This adds the human element to online teaching. Students forget that the individual who is responding to their submissions is an actual professor working to maintain standards of the university. Students are online asynchronously. Skype affords synchronous communication making the online learning experience a perfect blending of interactions. No longer are we educators of the twenty first century we are quickly evolving into becoming educators of the twenty second century.
Therese Kanai, University of Phoenix, online, Kailua-Kona, Hawaii, USA

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