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
I have been involved in the field of education for over twenty years. Upon graduation from the University of Hawaii in Manoa I moved to Kailua-Kona, Hawaii and was a substitute teacher. It was at that point in time that I decided that working with children was my passion. I attended UH Hilo earning my secondary teaching certification in mathematics and then received my MA in Education from Heritage College. I earned a Ph.D. in Education from Walden University. Most recently I have taken 18 graduate units in Communications.

While working on my degrees I continued to teach taking on responsibilities as head class advisor, started a G/T program, designed a network, graduated from the DOE T3 program, and served as the Mathematics Department Chairperson. l helped to open a new high school serving as the Technology Coordinator and Registrar. I also taught Special Education and was a Title 1 administrator. Currently I teach Online at the post-graduate level and am focusing on teaching and publishing. This is such an exciting field and Online education is the way for the future.

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