Universities’ e-tutoring methods should not be used in facilitated professional development

In most online courses at universities, tutors set a minimum number of discussion forum posts per week. For example, students must contribute at least twice in each discussion to receive credit for participation. The assessment of the number of contributions is deemed necessary to ensure students’ participation.

This is bad practice in an adult learning environment. Just imagine if we would run a face-to-face workshop with a flipchart holder on the side and the facilitator would start by saying “you must speak at least twice every time we have a discussion about a theme – I’ll tick it off here”. I’d be horrified and certainly not inspired to say anything at all.

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