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3.3 Networking and collaboration tools

Google Docs and other elements of the Google Workspace (as well as similar tools such as Padlet) allow educators to share materials with their students and work on them together in real time, or asynchronously. This can strengthen the teacher-student online relationship, which is particularly valuable in the early stages of a course. In addition, a range of collaborative networking tools can be used to foster group working and a sense of community between students on an online course.

Instant messaging apps can be used to support backchannels (Week 2 of this course introduced backchannels). Activities using Twitter or Pinterest to search for information, or Diigo to gather together relevant internet bookmarks, can help bring an online group together with a shared objective, as well as exposing that group to a wider community in a relevant subject area.