On Saturday, November 21st, I participated in my first web conference as part of the Educational Technology Leadership online master's degree program I am enrolled in through Lamar University. It was an enjoyable and welcome experience.
I was first of all excited to see that both Dr. Mason and Dr. Abernathy were participating in the conference. After seeing them in video lectures, it was nice to connect with them "in person", and especially beneficial to be able to directly ask them questions regarding our particular course and the degree plan. I also enjoyed meeting other students in the program via the web conference. Hearing their questions and where they were in their thoughts on the assignments was very beneficial for helping me better understand the expectations of the course and think about next steps I need to take.
I am immensely enjoying the convenience of an online program and the ability to access course materials and complete assignments on my own schedule. I have, however, been missing the sense of connection that usually occurs in a course between students and their professors and classmates. Although we have had interaction via email and on discussion boards, there is still a dimension of connection that only live interaction can satisfy. Even in the brief contact we had, I was able to get a little sense of the humans on the other side of the videos, assignments, and discussions. I enjoyed experiencing the human dimension through our video conference this week.
I appreciate the time Dr. Mason and Dr. Abernathy took to spend with us and answer our questions. I hope the video conferences will continue periodically. And I hope they will be instituted in other classes in the degree as well.