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David McDade Post 1

18 May 2020, 13:23 Edited by the author on 19 May 2020, 15:25

Section 2, Activity 1

This thread is for section 2, activity 1 Dinos

Think about the ‘traditional’ role of a face-to-face teacher. In what ways do you think working as a tutor would differ from this role?

These are examples of the types of posts we might expect to see:

"There is reduced face-to-face contact and so there is the danger of students feeling isolated.

"Identifying the needs of students is not as clear-cut as in a classroom and, therefore, early discussions with students are very important."

Use the "Reply" button below to contribute to this discussion.

(Image CC BY-NC-SA 2.0 Flickr user Mooshme https://www.flickr.com/photos/Mooshme/)

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David Sherlock Post 2 (summarised) in reply to 1

4 Jun 2020, 15:41
Thinking about my face-to-face teaching experiences, there are certain types...
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David McDade Post 3 (summarised) in reply to 2

4 Jun 2020, 16:02
Hello David, Yes, there are lots of other opportunities to engage with...
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Lucy Bailey Post 5 (summarised) in reply to 2

6 Jun 2020, 14:52
I agree David, when in a face-to-face teaching environment there is the...
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Lucy Gillett Post 4 (summarised) in reply to 1

4 Jun 2020, 22:52
In a face to face environment an 'ice breaker' happens as a part of the...
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Marcus Young Post 22 (summarised) in reply to 4

12 Jun 2020, 17:57
Hi Lucy, I think you've made a really important point there. For some...
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Lucy Bailey Post 6 (summarised) in reply to 1

6 Jun 2020, 14:56
I can relate to the feeling of isolation that students can feel whilst...
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Brian Morton Post 7 (summarised) in reply to 6

6 Jun 2020, 18:42
I agree with all your thoughts totally. Being a student with the OU and...
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Jenny Bakkali Post 8 (summarised) in reply to 7

7 Jun 2020, 17:04
Hi Brian, Welcome to the course and the forum. Could post in the...
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Tamara Lopez Post 9 (summarised) in reply to 1

7 Jun 2020, 21:07
As an undergraduate, I was always a committed and engaged student in class. ...
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Jenny Bakkali Post 10 (summarised) in reply to 9

8 Jun 2020, 10:42
I find, that as you get to know your students, you get a feel for the level...
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Heather Yorston Post 11 (summarised) in reply to 1

8 Jun 2020, 17:54
It is hard on a telephone call when you can't read the body language of a...
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Jenny Bakkali Post 12 (summarised) in reply to 11

8 Jun 2020, 19:28
Hi Heather, You can only communicate with methods that a student is...
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Ben Pike Post 13 (summarised) in reply to 1

9 Jun 2020, 12:12
While I agree with the other posters that the lack of face to face contact...
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Kate Sim Post 14 (summarised) in reply to 13

9 Jun 2020, 12:52
Hi Ben, just to make it clear that most tutorials are not one-to-one.  I...
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Ben Pike Post 17 (summarised) in reply to 14

9 Jun 2020, 15:17
Good to know. My mother is an AL and does some 1 to 1 telephone tutorials,...
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Jacqueline Jones Post 15 (summarised) in reply to 1

9 Jun 2020, 12:52
With face-to-face teaching you can see who is engaged or not and you may find...
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Pauline Hewgill Post 16 (summarised) in reply to 1

9 Jun 2020, 13:09
Isolation is something I've been focusing on with sixth form students during...
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David McDade Post 33 (summarised) in reply to 16

17 Jun 2020, 12:12
Hello Pauline, You raise a couple of interesting points here. It has indeed...
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Adrian Hehir Post 18 (summarised) in reply to 1

10 Jun 2020, 15:44
To add to what other people have written, I think student engagement could be...
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Geoff Nunn Post 19 (summarised) in reply to 1

11 Jun 2020, 08:59

Staying motivated.

 Having experienced both the O.U. distance learning route...
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Jenny Bakkali Post 20 (summarised) in reply to 19

11 Jun 2020, 15:57
Hi Geoff, Welcome to the course and forum, and good to hear you have plenty...
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Ian Cochrane

Ian Cochrane Post 41 (summarised) in reply to 19

17 Jul 2020, 14:54
I agree with your observation on occasionally variable teaching quality in...
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Emmanuel Isibor Post 21 (summarised) in reply to 1

12 Jun 2020, 13:14
I think the OU tutor’s role has been carefully designed to guard against the...
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Marcus Young Post 23 (summarised) in reply to 1

12 Jun 2020, 18:24
I think the extent of the difference depends on whether we're talking about...
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Kate Sim Post 24 (summarised) in reply to 23

13 Jun 2020, 08:42
Hi Marcus, The amount of direct contact varies a lot from module to module...
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Marcus Young Post 26 (summarised) in reply to 24

14 Jun 2020, 22:26
Hi Kate, Yes, that makes sense. Very helpful, thanks. Marcus
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Cath Brown Post 25 (summarised) in reply to 23

13 Jun 2020, 19:50
It is certainly possible to have much more contact at the Ou - when I did my...
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Sarah Green Post 31 (summarised) in reply to 25

17 Jun 2020, 10:57
I agree with you Cath. I have found OU tutors have generally been more...
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Greg O'Connell Post 27 (summarised) in reply to 1

15 Jun 2020, 09:55
Over the past 6 or 7 years I have taught/supported learners. In the class...
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Jenny Bakkali Post 28 (summarised) in reply to 27

15 Jun 2020, 13:34
Hi Greg It is interesting to hear about your recent experience re the...
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Quentin McPhee Post 29 (summarised) in reply to 1

16 Jun 2020, 14:39
In recent months and as a result of corona-virus I have changed the way that...
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Colin Jenkins Post 30 (summarised) in reply to 1

16 Jun 2020, 16:03
The traditional classroom environment allows a more spontaneous interaction...
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Sarah Green Post 32 (summarised) in reply to 1

17 Jun 2020, 11:12
Face to face tutorials allow an individual to see body language that can help...
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Michael Liedl Post 34 (summarised) in reply to 1

22 Jun 2020, 15:24
The question makes me reflect on two considerations:   1.       How does the...
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Anna Pietrzak Post 35 (summarised) in reply to 1

24 Jun 2020, 10:49
I deliver 'class based' and online courses and from a perspective of the...
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Rachael Luck Post 36 (summarised) in reply to 1

4 Jul 2020, 13:58

Difference from face to face

 Difference in tutor role from face to face...
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Manoj Nanda Post 37 (summarised) in reply to 1

10 Jul 2020, 15:55

Face to Face vs Remote learning

 Think about the ‘traditional’ role of a...
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Jenny Bakkali Post 38 (summarised) in reply to 37

10 Jul 2020, 19:21
Hi Manoj, Welcome to the course and the forum, and great to see you're busy...
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Ganiat Kazeem Post 39 (summarised) in reply to 1

13 Jul 2020, 22:24

Adapting and reaching out

 What I have gleaned from the course so far and from...
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Kate Sim Post 40 (summarised) in reply to 39

13 Jul 2020, 22:54
It sounds as though you are getting the right sort of ideas from the module...
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Ian Cochrane

Ian Cochrane Post 42 (summarised) in reply to 1

17 Jul 2020, 15:02
It will be essential to respond as fast as possible to student...
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ng264

Nigel Gibson Post 43 (summarised) in reply to 42

17 Jul 2020, 15:34
[Image] Hi Ian, While this might seem counter-intuitive it is actually not...
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Jonathan Hopkins Post 44 (summarised) in reply to 1

27 Jul 2020, 20:26
Most of the distance learning that I was involved in historically took the...
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Gail Ollis Post 45 (summarised) in reply to 1

8 Aug 2020, 20:37
This is a really interesting question in Covid-19 times. I've been supporting...
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Jonathan Hopkins Post 46 (summarised) in reply to 1

19 Aug 2020, 18:37
The thing that I have noticed about teaching remotely is that formative...
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Theresa Schrem Post 51 (summarised) in reply to 46

8 Oct 2020, 15:54
The difficulty with formative assessment that you mention is something that I...
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Coffee on Tyne

Bill Tarpy Post 47 (summarised) in reply to 1

25 Aug 2020, 17:48
Hi all,  A long time ago in a galaxy far away I was a secondary school...
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Jenny Bakkali Post 48 (summarised) in reply to 47

26 Aug 2020, 17:28
Hi Bill In terms of knowing about students' IT/comms experience - there is no...
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Petra Wolf Post 49 (summarised) in reply to 1

17 Sep 2020, 16:44
Thinking back on my own experience, I think an OU tutor needs to be able to...
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Theresa Schrem Post 50 (summarised) in reply to 1

8 Oct 2020, 15:51

Section 2 Activity 1

 I think it is more difficult to develop a rapport with...
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Silvia Varagnolo Post 52 (summarised) in reply to 1

16 Oct 2020, 10:54
I think the channels available for communication with the students are much...
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Dhouha Kbaier Post 53 (summarised) in reply to 52

25 Nov 2020, 10:59
There are of course some drawbacks that colleagues have listed above....
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Kevin Frost Post 54 (summarised) in reply to 1

20 Dec 2020, 22:32
Isolation has been mentioned a lot so far and for good reason I think. but I...
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Amanda Cambridge Post 55 in reply to 1

20 Mar 2021, 11:56

I will freely admit, prior to lock down, I had thought more about the disadvantages of less face to face teaching in a classroom. However, what I found that I loved about remote learning was that the students (in my case children) actually felt more able to let me know what was going on outside of their learning - I met quite a lot of cats and dogs - and felt freer to share their ideas and ask for help when they knew that they could do that via email or one to one video calls rather than in front of a class. We were able to relate our learning to what interested them. I think the disadvantages were that it was easier to skip a lesson or not complete tasks and all the distractions at home. I have found this to be true for adult learners too.

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Fiona Baxter Post 59 (unread) in reply to 55

17 Jun 2021, 13:12

This is so important Amanda. I work with Autistic children and their families, and remote learning has been for some, a much more positive experience than their classroom. When in their safe, comfortable environment, free from anxieties related to social and sensory demands of school, some have thrived. We are all our best selves when learning can be truly flexible to our learning styles and interests :)     

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Bernadette Vella Post 56 in reply to 1

13 Apr 2021, 19:19

reflecting on my own experience as an OU Student.


I wanted my tutor to demonstrate both real life experience and academic knowledge so I knew I could learn from both aspects and use both in my real life as well as my course.  There is a need to reach out and engage with students who are not engaging as much.  In face to face this would be easier so extra sensitivity and effort is required from the tutor

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Fiona Baxter Post 60 (unread) in reply to 56

17 Jun 2021, 13:23

I agree Bernadette in that I was inspired to enter teaching by the part-time tutors I had had at University and on FE programmes, who were actively working in their industry and so felt more relevant and practically helpful.

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Tony Sheppard Post 57 in reply to 1

7 May 2021, 12:57

It's been interesting to see how people have adapted to remote working and schools to remote teaching. Having been involved in online learning for some time, it has been quite rewarding to see that the differences between remote teaching and remote learning are starting to be understood, something that the OU has understood for years.

The promotion of independent learning can be tough and there are so many barriers that crop up. F2F sessions as a tutor/coach/mentor/AL are changing and being pro-active with your students is so important. Helping them to understand their limits and get past them, helping them to identify target areas, being able to spot those needing additional support during difficult times and being able to reward and celebrate when things are going well.

This can be anything from a video call, phone call, email, text message or even sending a calming picture of kittens or puppies. 

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Fiona Baxter Post 61 (unread) in reply to 57

17 Jun 2021, 13:28

It definitely helps to be a human being! ;) These are important life and work skills as well, especially in IT, where it is necessary to try, fail, problem solve, Google, ask a friend and try again on a daily basis! 

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Amanda Williams Post 58 (unread) in reply to 1

11 Jun 2021, 11:08

I think face-to-face and remote is very different.  Although are all online most of the day, with many things available through simple searches.  Experience teaching through covid, it is very difficult to grasp whether students actually understand.  In a class, you can offer support and talk through questions and concepts.  You can't gage body language working online, on a telephone, and it is also difficult through Zoom/Teams etc..

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Fiona Baxter Post 62 (unread) in reply to 1

17 Jun 2021, 13:41

I've been a tutor and assessor in vocational education, within workplaces, charities & CICs for 12 years, so for me there is no 'traditional'. Often contact with my learners has been via email/text and most recently via Zoom/Meet/Teams.

I have always loved the freedom to really meet my learners where they are at, and offer truly personalised learning experiences which play to their strengths and what they 'can do' and have already done! 

I have never worked in a formal school education environment, but I feel meeting individual needs there is harder, for example in case of SEND students. These are often the learners I have taught in alternative settings, who haven't been able to reach their potential at school.  

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Michael Coggins-Lunt Post 63 (unread) in reply to 1

24 Jun 2021, 12:01

Working as an OU tutor would differ from face-to-face work as in a digital environment there is sometimes an expectation that an email will be seen instantly and acted upon. In a face-to-face setting office hours are embedded and students respect that a teacher  is either present and can be talked to or is not present and therefore you can not talk to them 'right now'. As an AL I believe a clear availability schedule would be a MUST, so that expectations are managed, but also so student know when and how to contact you at any given time. For example you could set 'office hours' and host a live video drop in session for students each week. Setting the expectation that  outside of that time 'instant' reply could not be expected.

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Elena Sanchez-Heras Post 64 (unread) in reply to 1

4 Jul 2021, 17:33

A tutor at OU is the face of the university. The first point of contact for a student with their new study material. As it is distance learning, the tutor would provide the support for the student to navigate through the OU website. 

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Charlotte Jukes Post 65 (unread) in reply to 1

5 Jul 2021, 12:17

I think there are benefits and challenges to both types of learning and teaching. 

As a teacher, my experiences of face-to-face learning are that feedback and reflection is instantaneous. However, sometimes I think that instant feedback can be forgotten, whereas considered online feedback is sometimes taken in more easily. 

It is more difficult to really get to know someone if they are behind a screen, however, through technology such as Teams and Zoom, getting to know online learners is becoming easier. 

Accessibility is a huge issue for me, as a disabled person. Attending face-to-face education has been difficult for me in the past, particularly at inaccessible venues, or on days where I may be feeling quite ill. Online learning gives disabled people the opportunity to participate in learning from home, eliminating many access issues and with supportive tutors, providing solutions to online access issues. 

I think that sometimes, distraction may be an issue with online learning. I have sometimes found myself, when learning from home as an OU student, distracted by an incoming child, or my barking dog, which would not happen if I was in a face-to-face lecture. However, studying online, with recorded lectures gives me the opportunity to revisit the learning experience and "catch up", which is not usually the case in face-to-face learning that tends to be "in the moment". 

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Ann Kretzschmar Post 66 (unread) in reply to 1

7 Jul 2021, 23:04

I think first and foremost students need confidence. They will initially go through the stages of impostor syndrome and need to be supported to believe that they should be studying. Many will have 'failed' at school and will need extra back-up. Once that self belief is in place then all the other skills can be worked on.

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Muzna Sadia Post 67 (unread) in reply to 1

9 Jul 2021, 12:34

Its a very good opportunity for the students who have responsibilities and other commitments. I must say f2f teaching is not as direct (in terms of individual student support) as online teaching, as the teacher is accessible via email or a phone call to discuss any idea or anything that a student is concerned about. 

Me on the Golden Gate bridge in 2008

Stephen Butler Post 68 (unread) in reply to 1

14 Jul 2021, 13:43

I think one big difference is helping students transition to less of a teacher led learning experience and more of a student led learning experience. As a student's tutor you're one of the resources they have available to them. We can help them learn how best to utilise that resource and all the other resources they have available to them.

But I would think there's also an opportunity to make proactive interventions when we see evidence that such might be required and are likely to be helpful?

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Charlotte O'Leary Post 69 (unread) in reply to 1

20 Jul 2021, 12:22

I think Lucy G raises a significant point here that, for some students, distance learning enables them to communicate MORE freely than they might in F2F classroom settings. Having worked online a lot myself (due to Covid,) over the past 16 months, I can see that when meetings are managed well, everyone gets a voice and contributes. Using the chat option is also helpful for participants who may not feel comfortable saying something out loud. 

Distance learning is different from the traditional F2F role of a teacher in that it might be harder for students to build relationships with one another. In F2F settings that would be a natural part of each session. Learning online requires the tutor to facilitate this more than may naturally occur when working together F2F.

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Ann Kretzschmar Post 70 (unread) in reply to 1

26 Jul 2021, 18:41

Casual conversations will not happen in the same way as they would in a f2f situation so it may be more difficult to get to know the students. This means that identifying their support needs may be more difficult.

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Kate Sim Post 71 (unread) in reply to 70

27 Jul 2021, 20:08

That is a real problem with some OU students, where they fail to respond to any attempt to communicate.

Kate - in lurking mod mode

Discussion tags: section 2