My teaching experience during covid was also altered during covid19 and part of it moved online but not entirely as Sweden did not apply very strong measures as many other countries but it was definitely blended. In my case it was actually an advantage, since many of my courses require the active use of technology such as 3D printing software being able to teach students live. It actually made things easier as students could follow exactly from their own computer what I was doing on mine.
According to Hodges (2020) , “careful planning for online learning includes not just identifying the content to cover but also carefully tending to how you’re going to support different types of interactions that are important to the learning process”. In this sense it was easier to design some of my courses online precisely for the online core elements of the course. The main reason is that it facilitates communicating the contents of the course if they can be in front of a computer screen as myself and practice while I explain. In this case, the possibility to work online when teaching online content as discussed by Vaughan et al.(2013) “provides a conceptual order that goes beyond rigid recipes”.
Following the “Community of Inquiry Educator Survey” I try to support students especially through points 24 and 15 by exploration and facilitation tools that keep them engaged and participating in productive dialogue.
I think the advancement of technology is blurring the online and offline boundaries and at some point these differentiations will be minor. We can see that many companies are blending AR/VR technologies and the use of avatars in virtual spaces where your colleagues can see your gestures and listen to sounds is becoming more common. Maybe the question is how the content of offline education will adapt to a world where many things happen online.
Hodges, C. et.al (2020). The Difference Between Emergency Remote Teaching and Online Learning. EDUCAUSE review.
Vaughan, N. D., Cleveland-Innes, M., & Garrison, D. R. (2013). Teaching in blended learning environments: Creating and sustaining communities of inquiry. Edmonton: AU Press. Chapter 1 “The Community of Inquiry Conceptual framework”.