Episode 2

"Spirited Online Conversation"

Duration 00:16:10      Recorded on September 29, 2006

In this episode of the LearningTimes Green Room, Susan Manning and Dan Balzer review the anatomy of an incredibly lively online discussion. They welcome LearningTimes.org member Katherine Grocott of Australia into the Green Room to share the fascinating backstory behind a discussion she initiated on "Theological Education" several months ago, and find out where it has led her and so many members of the LearningTimes community worldwide.

Show Notes:

Commenting on exciting developments in LT community. This is based on a post within "Theological Education" first posted in March by Katherine Grocott, Registrar at Tabor Bible College. In short, she asked what she needed to know if her institution were considering online learning program. More than 140 replies, very global. Good example of connectivism, of people pointing her toward resources, information or people to help her solve the problem.

Dan identified 3 categories of responses

  1. Those that directed her to a tool or person
  2. Those offering services
  3. Those that offered a paragraph or two addressing conceptual issues
Kat read and responded to almost every post, usually with a follow-up question. This kept opening the door for more and gave us an opportunity to see her understanding blossom.A couple of our favorite themes:
  • Teaching, learning and questioning.
  • How environments need to be safe, empowering, communal and organized.
  • Posts from a theological perspective, unique contexts and connections
  • Didn't shy away from tricky issues like faculty compensation, copyright, stakeholders, and so on

And now the interview... Kat reflects on how surprised she was at how willing respondents were to share information.

What prompted her to post the first question? The question was part of a class assignment (participation in an online community), but also addressed the Tabor College need. LearningTimes was the community she selected.

Next step in learning? To do analysis of all that will impact online learning at Tabor and then to design a plan, a 'root' for Tabor.

If she hadn't had the LearningTimes community ... we agreed it would not have been as rich a learning process as the discussion has been. Fresh and relevant!

Dan and Susan thank Katherine for her transparency and authenticity.

About Us

The LT Green Room is a podcast for Renewal, Retooling and Conversations about Learning. It is co-hosted by Susan Manning and Dan Balzer and its show topics are often drawn from members of LearningTimes.org, a free online community of education and training professionals from across the globe. The LT Green Room gives listeners (and ourselves) an opportunity to reflect on what they're doing behind the scene that results in an effective learning experience.


Co-Host & Producer
Susan Manning
Co-Host & Producer
Dan Balzer
Executive Producer
Carl Heine
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