Although the Internet is potentially a good source of wide ranges of information, most teachers and researchers lack the skills and knowledge to use the Internet effectively. An Internet search skill involves understanding of the evaluation of information found as well as the skills to locate information effectively. Support must be provided for teachers who lack the necessary skills and knowledge to use the Internet effectively to support their teaching so as to meets students’ needs during an online learning. Internet searching is the practice of using the Internet, especially the World Wide Web, for research. The Internet is a virtually endless source of information and nowadays it is most people’s first port of call whenever they need to access any information. Although the Internet is potentially a good source of wide ranges of information, most teachers and researchers lack the skills and knowledge to use the Internet effectively. An internet search skill involves understanding of the evaluation of information found on the Internet as well as the skills to locate information effectively. Support must be provided for teachers who lack the necessary skills and knowledge to use the Internet effectively to support their teaching so as to meets students’ needs
RESEARCHING YOUR TOPIC AS A TEACHER
The goal of every teacher is to acquire the conceptual background and the online skills needed to become Internet literate. Do you send your students to the Internet to do research? I ask teachers this question when I lead workshops, and their answer is yes even in the primary grades. Then I ask if they teach any specific lessons to prepare students for researching in an online environment. Their answer is no. Because our students are digital natives, right? Even the youngest of them can know how to manipulate all kinds of digital devices, how to create and upload content, and how to find entertaining things online. This leads us to assume they are Internet competent. But do they really understand how to find the best of places for research and how to analyze all the sites from their? The answer is no. Here is something else I’ve learned from my workshops: Teachers absolutely believe that teaching Internet literacy is necessary. Yet it isn’t happening and not because of the time constraints, although that is certainly a factor. The main issue is that many of us don’t have a great deal of Internet literacy ourselves. Most people rely on Wikipedia. With so many students now having portable technology like tablets and smart phones at their disposal, a few clicks can be a much more efficient way to get the information they need than flicking through the pages of heavy tomes, but how do they know which information is reliable and which is not? In this digital world, good Internet search skills and the ability to separate the wheat from the chaff in search results are essential skills for teachers to impart to their students.
Researchers require adequate time to practice, process, and develop these skills. However, with the rigorous academic curriculum and limited time constraints that come with traditional education, most people do not have sufficient independent practice time needed to comprehensively develop these skills.
GOALS OF ONLINE RESEARCH SKILLS
Whether you are searching an online catalogue, a bibliographic database or using Google, it is helpful to plan your search in advance. This will save you time in the long-run.
- Think about how you would describe your topic area
- Use various of search tools to meet personal and academic needs
- Read search results to determine relevant and reliable information
- Use results to refine a search
- Evaluate your Information. Has the search found relevant results?
- Determine what information is relevant to the learning task most especially when you find too much information, too little information or irrelevant results?
- Determine how you will translate your topic into keywords which the database or online search will understand?
In a highly competitive world, online learning helps people to get the right skills and broaden their horizons while overcoming time and monetary hindrances. With online learning, almost anyone can get access to education irrespective of the location. In order to make the best use of the advantages the online environment has to offer, however, online instructors need to keep in mind that active learning is one of the keys to success in the online classroom. Instructors need to employ new techniques and technologies to ensure that their courses make the best of the online medium. The learning management system used in all our online courses, Blackboard, provides a solid framework to do this; additionally, we have a team of instructional designers who work with each instructor to ensure that course content is effectively delivered online. In this era of Covid 19, learning using Google Classroom, Online and online Teaching Blog has save students from going to school rather than learning online.
WHY IS ONLINE TEACHING IMPORTANT?
The Internet has significantly changed how we communicate with one another as well as how we access, share and facilitate information. The issue is no longer one of how to use technology to teach, but one where teachers acknowledge the way the world is already developing, and understand the significance of online literacy and the role that collaboration and online engagement plays in student learning and their future workplace environment.
KEY BENEFITS OF TEACHING ONLINE
- Increased flexibility of time:
- Learning and teaching can occur at times that are more convenient and productive for both students and teachers. Students can work at their own pace within a given framework and the online learning and teaching engagement process can be broken into smaller more frequent portions of time, with an opportunity for reflection in between.
- Increased flexibility of location
- Learning and teaching can take place in any location (home, office, while commuting, coffee shop) and can include students and teachers from diverse geographical locations
- Online education gives learning a new relevance to contemporary society and professional and industry practice
- Information sharing
- Online education provides opportunities to access and share information more easily and readily. Teachers and students are able to join online communities of practice based on their area of interest rather than their geographic location.
- Online resources
- Online education provides access to a greater depth and breadth of resources and information
- Diverse and enriching experience
- Online education can enhance the student learning experience by providing opportunities for cross-disciplinary, cross-cultural and/or cross-campus collaborations. This learning experience can occur at a local, national or international level, and can be enriched by increased interaction and engagement, peer feedback, and group work skills
- Access, equity & disability
- Online delivery provides a mechanism for equal opportunity amongst students and teachers living with a disability, or who have accessibility difficulties that restrict their ability to attend a face-to-face class
- Digital information literacy
- Online learning develops digital literacy skills that are increasingly required in contemporary society and workplace environments
- Online education can streamline some administrative aspects of teaching.
ABOUT THE WRITER
Chinekwu Anthony Ugbor is a Google Trainee who specializes in capacity building training for online Information Search Skills, Researching your Topics, Google Classroom and online teaching Blogs. Email. firstname.lastname@example.org