3. Ayudando al estudiante

The perspective of online students differs greatly to that of conventional students. With teaching musical instruments, the greatest challenges arise from the perspectives of the students themselves, which is why it is necessary to adjust our content and teaching methods to this particular audience. Where in a conventional classroom our interactions are 3 dimensional, our interactions with online students are 2 dimensional. In a classroom, we can be tactile, observe from different angles, provide explanations whilst be making eye contact, and repeat motions when needed. The perspective of the student in the classroom is one that is familiar to us as instructors and our teaching methods are orientated towards catering to this perspective.

Image 1 shows the complete instructor with the instrument. The important part of this instruction is the instrument, therefore the full image of the instructor with the instrument provides unnecessary information. With good pronunciation of oral instruction, having visual contact with the instructors face is not necessary. Image 3 shows a focus on the instrument, but with this particular angle, the marking of the fingers on the fretboard is less evident. The fingers in front begin to cover the remainder of the fingers and frets making it difficult to determine what is being marked. Image 2 demonstrates a clear view of the instrument from both the strumming hand and the marking hand on the fretboard. The position of the fingers is clearer with respect to where they meet the fretboard.

The online student perspective begins with understanding their environment. Online students make use of either a computer or a mobile device to conduct their learning. The main methods of transferring knowledge are through video, audio, and images. The video to an online student remains 2 dimensional. They can observe what the instructor is doing and try to reproduce what they see. The levels of concentration necessary for this are greater than in a conventional classroom because the student is not able to stand up and see important factors such as finger positioning. Often, students find themselves deciphering or decoding information presented to them, which can lead to frustration, cognitive load imbalance, and ultimately become a distraction from the learning.

Image 4 demonstrates a clear view of the fingers marking the fretboard, but not the strumming hand. This way, the student can see what is being marked, but not how it is being played. Both hands must be visible when providing instruction. Image 5 demonstrates a clear frontal view of the instruments with the finger positioning and the strumming hand. This is a preferable angle over image 4.

The same concepts of a video file are applicable to audio and images. They are all in need of being clear and concise as possible. We will explore techniques on how to ensure that students spend less time decoding, and more time applying the information presented to them. Continue to keep in mind the perspective of the student.

Try it for yourself and compare both of the videos in the next unit terms of how long it takes for you to de-code what is being taught.

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