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An in depth case analysis of two language teachers coping with online instruction

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3 Author(s)
Lazarevic, B. ; Univ. of Nebraska-Lincoln, Lincoln, NE, USA ; Bentz, D. ; Scepanovic, D.

Teaching language in online and traditional classroom settings has different requirements in terms of instructor preparation, competencies, and teaching methods. This case study focuses on the challenges that language teachers face in an online learning environment. Specifically, this paper provides an in depth analysis of the coping strategies of two instructors who teach foreign language courses online delivered by BlackBoard learning management system (LMS) and audio conferencing systems. Analysis of the data revealed several themes. After contrasting and comparing the patterns across the themes the researcher indentified the following three cross themes: Personal Confidence, Teacher Training, and Beliefs about Online Teaching. The cross case themes reflect the coping issues that face online language instructors. Furthermore, there were two primary perspectives labeled as Psychological/personal Aspect of Teaching and Teaching Practice. Finally, Professional Growth emerged as a meta-theme from this inquiry. Study results show that online instructors cope well with online instruction within the framework of their competencies and skills. However, findings also indicate a strong need for the initial and continued professional development in the area of distance education. Altogether, teacher technology training, including instructor preparation for online teaching methods seems to be the best approach to help teachers cope more effectively with online instruction.

Published in:

eChallenges, 2010

Date of Conference:

27-29 Oct. 2010