Assessment of Web Conferencing in Teacher Preparation Field Experiences
Abstract: This paper reports the results of a pilot study conducted in the Fall of 2009 with a group of distant placement intern student teachers using web conferencing. Web conferencing involved the synchronous integration of screen sharing, text chat, audio streaming, and video streaming. Web conferencing was used to bring interns together in online virtual seminars. The interns shared topics of interest through brief presentations and this was followed by online synchronous discussions. A survey was administered after the course to determine student perceptions of the web conferencing system. Overall students valued the experience and felt this was effective at providing a learning environment. The instructor provides suggestions for improving the experience and expanding its role but cautions about the technical issues that need to be addressed. Web conferencing seems to be a useful way of bringing together student interns who are placed in distant practicum settings.