Thursday, July 30, 2009

Our first online meeting

Our first online meeting will be tomorrow, Friday 31st July at 11am New Zealand time (click here for international time zones). In this meeting we will be introducing ourselves and looking at what we want to achieve during this course. We will be recording this meeting so if you miss it in real time, you can listen to the recording at your leisure.

We plan to alternate the times of our meetings so hopefully we will meet everyone's needs with regards to time.

Setting up for Elluminate
We will be using the web conference platform Elluminate throughout this course. To get to the meeting, please click on this link. If you have never used Elluminate before, I strongly advise that you get set up before hand. Here is the link to information about setting up your computer to use Elluminate.
  1. Click onto the link to the Elluminate meeting.
  2. Enter your name - don't worry about a password - you do not need one.
  3. Wait for Elluminate to download.
  4. Check that you can hear and speak - may need to work your way through the audio setup wizard ->tools -> audio-> audio set up wizard.
Dealing with problems
In my experience, the main problems people have with Elluminate happens when they are trying to access it at work. Firewalls often prevent people accessing Elluminate so if this is a problem, please contact your IT people. You do need Java on your computer, so check that it is enabled first.
  • go to 'tools' on your Internet browser
  • click onto 'options'
  • go to 'content'
  • click onto 'enable JavaScript' and 'enable Java'.
Any further problems with Elluminate, please let me know. Sarah

Image: 'Roscoe Considers Recording a Podcast' zoomar

Monday, July 27, 2009

Welcome to Facilitating Online 09

Hello everyone and welcome to Facilitating Online 09.

My name is Sarah Stewart and I am very pleased to be facilitating this course along with Leigh Blackall. We have people joining us from all over the world so we can expect great networking, discussion and collaboration.

We will be spending the next couple of months looking at how to be an online facilitator, discussing the difference between facilitating, teaching and moderating; looking at various online communities and facilitating our own online events. For details about the course schedule, please check the course wiki.

Getting started
If you haven't done so yet, please set up a blog that you can use for your weekly reflections and explorations. If you're not sure how to set up a blog, have a look at these instructions. For an idea of how blogging works, have a look at the blogs of previous participants.

When you write a blog post for this course please label or tag it FOC09 - that way we can all keep a track of what and when we're writing.

Once you have set up your blog, add it to the list of this year's participants, then write a post about yourself, introducing yourself to everyone - write about who you are, why you are doing the course, what you hope to get out of the course and what experience you have had of belonging to an online community.

Connecting with other course participants
To get the most out of the course it is advisable to network with the other course participants. One way of doing this is to subscribe to each other's blogs. Follow the thoughts of your 'classmates', leave comments and continue the discussion on your own blog.

First online meeting
Our first online meeting will be on Friday 31st July at 11am New Zealand time - click here to see what time this is in other regions of the world. We will be using the online web conferencing platform Elluminate - click here to find out how to access Elluminate. In this meeting, we'll be introducing ourselves and getting to know each other better. We will record the meeting so if you are unable to attend, you will be able to view/listen to the recording.

Saying 'hello'
I will be phoning around over the next couple of days to catch up with formally enrolled students. If you are an informal student and wish to check in with me, please feel free to contact me via any of the online communication channels I use.

Any queries about what we're doing, your enrollment or the technology, please feel free to contact me. Sarah

Image: The Street Where I Live Choconancy1

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

2 for the price of 1!

Great news! Sarah Stewart will be co facilitating the course starting 27 July. Sarah is a very passionate and experienced online communicator, facilitating online events such as the International Day of the Midwife where midwives and health professionals met in Second Life and Elluminate, web conferencing around several topics to do with midwifery. Sarah maintains a widely read blog - mostly targeting health practitioners and the use of social media to facilitate mentoring and training in the health sector.

Also, the course wiki (the one stop all you can eat information about this course) is now on Wikiversity. We are testing the waters with Wikiversity just to see what differences there are if any from Wikieducator (where we used to keep the course schedule). Everything remains the same otherwise, and much of the same functionality is retained.