Monday, 9 July 2012

Why do online conferencing?

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Geographical distances can make professional development and engaging with other professionals expensive, time consuming and tiring. I have recently become more aware of the power of online conferencing as an alternative and while it may have some disadvantages there are many powerful advantages.

1. You get support when you need it, by others who are facing similar challenges.
2. You can share everyones experiences to create a broader range of examples.
3. Working together achieves more than one individual. Each idea which is valued, respected and worthy of development, sparking more ideas. The space in between these ideas is where the best idea is created sharing understandings and using deeper levels of thinking.
4. For many people talking is a better way of learning than reading or listening.
5. The best way to check your own understanding is to explain it to others. It will assist in clarifying your ideas and challenge your understandings as you know it.
6. Your voice is heard and valued - you can finally have your say. You have time to carefully consider your responses without offending or upsetting other participants.
7. Arguments cannot happen without evidence and data that will support a different view.
8. Free to go on line anytime, anywhere during the conference time frame. No set meetings and sitting in a conference room.

If you are lucky enough to be part of an online conference the best things you can do is be confident enough to share your ideas. Your idea is not only expected and respected but also needed as a different perspective to challenge everyone's thinking. This is where the best ideas are lurking.
Get involved and make a commitment to advance your understanding and that of others.

For even more information this is a great read: Plumpton, B. (n.d.) How students can make conferencing work. Retrieved from

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