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Study Related Terms and Definitions

Screen Casting

A video recording of computer screen activity typically including audio narration. Online teachers use screen casting to create and share tutorials, overviews, lessons, labs, and step-by-step guides. Online students use screen casting to share their work and to create narrative online projects.

Social Media

Online spaces that enable users to create and share content, and to join and participate in networking and collaborative activities. Social media includes applications like Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Instagram, and Google Plus. Social media application support online teaching and learning by providing options to connect and collaborate, and a “hallway” of sorts to continue conversations, and connect around topics of interest.

Social Presence

A measure of how well online students and instructors are able to establish and communicate out their personal identities into an online course and feel like a “real” person. Social presence examples include: allowing risk-free expression; drawing in participants; encouraging collaboration; establishing instructor presence; and engaging in supportive contact and interactions.

Streaming Media

Audio and video files that are streamed over the web in real time, with no downloading required. Streaming media servers are available at most institutions for faculty to upload media files to for their online courses, so that students do not need to download large files in order to review assigned materials.

Synchronous Learning

When synchronous components are introduced to an online course, then time is set aside for the students and instructor to meet online via webinar applications (inside or outside of the LMS), or other communication technologies. An online course can be taught completely synchronously, in which case the students would meet with their classmates and the instructor online at specific times, and communicate through available technologies.

System Requirements:

Many institutions have minimum requirements for student and faculty computers, operating systems, applications, and bandwidth for access to and guaranteed feature functionality in online courses.