The Virtual Teaching Life

Julie Blair, Education Week, May 09, 2002
Commentary by Stephen Downes

What is it like to be an online teacher? This article begins by recounting a trick we used when we were first starting up - posing online as a student to stimulate discussion. Sure, it works, but I never did wrap my mind around the ethics of it. Such issues and more confront the online teacher every day and teaching online - as this article makes clear - is a fundamentally different experience that teaching online. "There are lots of teachers that are fabulous face to face, and until they get online, they don't even realize how much they do theatrically [in regular classrooms]."
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