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Transforming F2F activities to an online format: Successes and Challenges
Last year, much of the world very suddenly experienced a wave of emergency remote teaching (ERT) due to the pandemic. The transition was challenging, requiring flexibility and patience from teachers and students. However, some effective learning was supported, and some activities may even have been enhanced by the transformation to an online format.
The presenters draw from their experience coteaching an interactive course on language and culture. The first iteration of the course in Fall 2019 was a traditional face-to-face (F2F) class featuring interactive tasks such as paired interviews, find someone who activities, wall readings, and classroom presentations. In 2020 as a result of ERT, the course went online in asynchronous format. It became necessary to realize typical classroom activities online for 2020 and now into 2021.
This presentation demonstrates how we transformed a selection of F2F activities to an online format. We present knowledge gleaned from two semesters in use and provide tips for making activities easier to follow, comprehend and complete. Using teacher observations, student coursework and student reflections, we evaluated how the digital activities compared with the F2F versions. Results showed that these activities could be delivered effectively online, following adaptations. We discuss how our experiences will inform our teaching going forward, both with the coming 2021 online courses and future F2F courses. We aim to contribute to discussion about what constitutes effective task types and how teachers can successfully create these tasks, both for online and traditional classroom use.