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Live Learning: Online Teaching, Digital Literacy and the Practice of Inquiry.

Casey, Leo and Hallissy, Michael (2013) Live Learning: Online Teaching, Digital Literacy and the Practice of Inquiry. TEL Ireland Journal, 1 (1).

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There has been significant discussion in recent times around improving the quality of teaching and learning in higher education (Laycock, 2009; Laurillard & Masterman, 2010; DES, 2010). The Lisbon Strategy (Commission to the Council and the European Parliament, 2006) has framed much of this discussion at a European level with individual countries, such as Ireland, developing their own-targeted strategies to expand and improve higher education (DES, 2010). In the case of Ireland, these strategies specifically mention the need for institutions to provide ‘excellent teaching’ whether in face-to-face or online settings. Whereas there is a significant body of on-going research conducted around effective teaching in traditional, face-to-face settings in higher education (for example, Bennett & Barp, 2008, Beetham & Sharpe, 2007) there is, in recent times, an emerging need for investigations that focus on new contexts for teaching particularly in online synchronous classrooms.

Many institutions have invested substantial time and resources in procuring new technology systems to support on-line teaching and in training staff to operate the many varied functions within these technologies. However, there is also a need to go beyond mere functionality and to provide deeper pedagogical support to faculty so they can fully realise the instructional potential of these systems (Kim & Bonk, 2006; Lee & Hirumi, 2004). Technological innovations in the area of online teaching lead to new challenges for teachers and educators as new tools are developed and adopted by their institutions. A question for researchers is the extent to which these tools augment or inhibit existing roles and practices in the classroom and to ask how we can conceptualize learning and teaching in such contexts.

The case for considering inquiry learning as the ‘telos’ or central purpose of classroom practice is presented here. In this way the live on-line classroom is conceived as a communal learning space where teacher and students participate in activities that are enabled, sustained and enriched by the functionality of the technology system.

Item Type: Article
Subjects: L Education > LB Theory and practice of education > LB2300 Higher Education
L Education > LC Special aspects / Types of education > E-Learning
Divisions: Centre For Research and Innovation in Learning and Teaching Publications
Depositing User: Timothy Lawless
Date Deposited: 24 Mar 2014 12:07
Last Modified: 24 Mar 2014 12:10

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