Factors Affecting Standardized Writing Pedagogy with Online Learning Management Systems
Keywords:Vista, online writing instruction, learning management system tools, standardization of writing pedagogy tools
The use of online course or learning management system (LMS) tools proliferates as writing instruction grows online along with administrative concerns to improve teaching efficiencies and program assessment. While many institutions use the template feature in LMS systems (e.g. Blackboard Vista) to generate a location for teacher resources, some institutions are using LMS tools to standardize course content, delivery, and pedagogy to varying degrees. However, digital literacy issues that affect both teachers and students can negatively impact teaching and learning with LMS tools, especially in Web-based settings. It is important to understand how such tools may or may not be used effectively in standardizing writing pedagogy, particularly how designers’ unfamiliarity with course content and their own and their students’ inexperience with the tools can negatively affect pedagogy and learning with such tools. I describe a specific example of problems encountered within an extreme form of standardization in a Web-based writing course delivered via WebCT/Vista, identify implications of such standardization, and suggest considerations that educators should be aware of in their efforts to standardize writing pedagogy through LMS tools.
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