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 International Journal of Education and Development using ICT > Vol. 10, No. 4 (2014) open journal systems 

Synchronous e-learning: Reflections and design considerations

Filiz Tabak, Towson University, USA
Rohit Rampal, State University of New York, USA

This paper is a personal reflection on the design, development, and delivery of online synchronous conferencing as a pedagogical tool complementing traditional, face-to-face content delivery and learning. The purpose of the paper is to demonstrate how instructors can combine collaborative and virtual learning principles in course design. In particular, the paper asserts that instructors should take into account relative advantage, compatibility, complexity, and risk attributes of new technologies before incorporating them to their courses. Further, it is important to evaluate organizational support availability such as financial resources and managerial support. In realizing team work for course projects that require group interactions, synchronous online conferencing can be very valuable, and even preferable, for students since it overcomes limitations of space, time, and distance. Future research should explore benefits, challenges, and outcomes of synchronous online discussions. Comparisons to implementation and design considerations of “asynchronous” virtual learning environments such as discussion board forums could be beneficial as asynchronous virtual discussions seem to be more commonly used in supplementing traditional course designs.

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International Journal of Education and Development using Information and Communication Technology. ISSN: 1814-0556