There is much more to facilitating online than mastering the technology!
How do I know that? My recent e-facilitation experiences are helping to identify the key elements of the role of an e-Facilitator. I have also been scouring the Internet for Job Descriptions for e-Facilitators. One of these was located at the Critical Metalearning blog – an eFacilitator Job Description posted by Neal Barber from Otago, New Zealand.
Let me unpack the learning I have gathered from this posting, for you here!
Key roles and responsibilities
An e-Facilitator has four main roles: educational, social, managerial and technical.
I believe that these roles require a deeper description of the type of tasks required by the e-Facilitator, so I’ve used a few these titles to express them in ‘e’ terms: e-learning educator, social e-learning director, e-learning manager and technology steward.
As an e-learning educator the e-Facilitator guides and supports the learning for the participants through the use of various synchronous and asynchronous communication tools. The e-Facilitator steps down from the ‘sage on the stage’ role to one of a ‘guide on the side’. The learning that takes place for each learner will be varied and different and they will become the co-creators of a new shared body of knowledge, guided and scaffolded by the e-Facilitator; an effective and powerful motivational force.
As a social e-learning director the e-Facilitator creates a safe, friendly and social learning environment by encouraging and promoting interaction through on-line discussions and activities among learners and between learners and the facilitator. The e-Facilitator leads and prompts the style of interaction by capturing and weaving pertinent points made by individuals for the benefit of the group. Structured team work and the development of a sense of community within the learning environment and among the participants are strong and effective strategies that the e-Facilitator initiates.
As an e-learning manager the e-Facilitator will set the course objectives, schedule tasks, set timelines, monitor progress and make the necessary organisational decisions to ensure integrity of the e-learning experience. The e-Facilitator manages and moderates the asynchronous discussions to integrate, generate and summarise the thoughts and ideas from the participants. The e-Facilitator manages the assessment process and provides guidance and information to the participants about the assessment expectations.
As a technology steward the e-Facilitator assists the participants with the navigation in the learning environment and the communication tools. The e-Facilitator will provide instructional and troubleshooting advice to ensure that the learners are supported in their use of technology. The e-Facilitator needs strong skills in instructional design and up to date knowledge of how tools in the learning environment work.
The e-Facilitator will need to use all of their educational, social, managerial and technical skills to ensure an ongoing commitment and enthusiasm of participants.
eFacilitate: Elluminate Webinar #2
Would you like to discuss these roles and responsibilities with a group of like-minded people online in real time?
What would you include in an eFacilitator Job Description?
I invite you to attend a free webinar about e-Facilitator Job Descriptions on Monday March 28 at 17:00 GMT+11 in the Australia Series room.