Vol. 5. No. 1 INT April 2001
Return to Table of Contents Return to Main Page
Previous Page Next Page


Interview with an Online Instructor (Part 2)

Jim Duber
duber dot com

JD: And what about the scope of the course, and the contents?

MS: The contents were basically a series of readings, one reading per week, typically, that was supported by discussion questions which were on a threaded bulletin board, and the students were expected to read, to do a kind of self-test, a little multiple-choice quiz after each reading that wasn't graded--it was just to check their comprehension of the main ideas--to participate in a bulletin board discussion about that topic for the week; and then also to do either an optional or a required assignment, and most weeks had an optional assignment, though there were three required assignments: one at the beginning of the course, one midstream, and one as a final project.

JD: What were the assignments like?

MS: The first assignment was just to create a sort of personal web page in which the teachers introduced themselves to the class, but more importantly they explained who their students were, what level they are teaching, what their curriculum currently is, and how they hope to integrate authentic materials into the curriculum. And, moreover just sort of what their goals were for the class. So, it was a way for me to get to know them as students and for them to get to know each other. 

Midstream, there was an assignment that asked them to make use of concordancing software to look at the way that a particular word or phrase is used, as evidenced by various English corpora, and to create a kind of assignment that would be suitable for their own students using the data from the concordance. And then the final project was to locate a piece of text somewhere on the Internet, or they could scan it in if they found it in print, and to create a kind of one-week lesson plan surrounding this piece of authentic text. And, that included writing a rationale, which meant describing again who their students were, and how this piece of text addressed the needs of their students. Then the various optional assignments just kind of broke each of those bigger assignments down into little pieces.

Use the buttons below to Stop, Pause and Play this audio file.

Previous Page Next Page
Table of Contents Top TESL-EJ Main Page
© Copyright rests with authors. Please cite TESL-EJ appropriately.

Editor's Note: Dashed numbers in square brackets indicate the end of each page for purposes of citation.