Peer-to-Peer Networking for eLearning
Peer-to-peer networking is one of the most popular items for teenagers on the internet today. Sites like MySpace and Facebook allow anyone to easily create their own personal webspace free of charge. It has become so big, that most people my age (25) and younger have a profile and update it regularly.
Social networks like the ones mentioned above can create very successful environments for eLearning as well. Teachers can easily build online communities through MySpace and Facebook to help students study, discuss and share information. Although most people would not want their current profiles displayed to a teacher or superior, new profiles can be developed specifically for an elearning community.
MySpace has a variety of very helpful features that can be applied to eLearning communities. I have been using MySpace for about 1 year so I will discuss some of things that this community offers.
The most basic feature of MySpace is to send and receive comments posted on your home page or privately. This creates an online classroom enviornment that can address the needs of the class or the needs of an individual student.
In conjunction with youTube, elearning videos can be posted onto MySpace pages and discussed accordingly. MySpace also has a bulletin board that is displayed when you login. This can be helpful to post homework assignments, lesson plans etc. Elearning blogs can also be developed by students and teachers as well.
To complete the online classroom environment, teachers can use an online learning management system (LMS) to develop quizzes, tests and add other online materials. LMS systems can automatically grade quizzes, eliminate copying quizzes, generate online reports etc. This can free up a lot of time for teachers so they can concentrate on developing an elearning community successfully.
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