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1.7 Web conferencing platforms

Although not usually purchased by individual teachers, most institutions have invested in at least one learning platform with web conferencing functionality. You may have heard of Adobe Connect and Blackboard Collaborate, for example, but there are many similar products available, including tools designed for individual use such as Skype, Zoom or Google Hangouts. These platforms provide the online teacher with opportunities for online classroom-like teaching scenarios, as well as offering opportunities for screensharing, group work, peer review and more. The greatest strengths of platforms like this tend to be in synchronous learning, although they can also be readily combined with tools like discussion forums to broaden the impact to asynchronous environments (Çakiroglu et al., 2016, Guo and Möllering, 2016, Kear et al., 2012). These tools can be used for replicating a seminar environment by wrapping synchronous discussion tools around a central presentation or video with voiceover.

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