Enhancing Classroom Materials

The evolution of information technologies allows instructors to post materials for their students to the Internet. Along with the proliferation of online archives, galleries, and libraries, this has allowed online course sites to become a wealth of resources for students to use when engaging class materials. Using the Internet, instructors can give students instant access to primary sources and class materials that would be prohibitively expensive and time-consuming to reproduce with print technologies. In addition, online assignments, multimedia, and educational simulations further enhance classroom materials.

Online materials and resources are most effectively integrated into class in line with the belief that they can and should enhance their off-line counterparts, as well as develop complex relations with them. It is also useful to remember that the WWW "is not a stable tool or resource to be 'mined,' but rather a medium for which a new range of tools and practices can and should be developed" (from Kevin M. Leander's "The Craft of Teaching and the World Wide Web").

Teachers are using the Internet to Publish Course Materials

  • Course materials (syllabus, handouts, assignment sheets)
  • Class and schedule updates
  • Class lecture or discussion notes
  • Online Classrooms - interactive Web Forums, MOOs, chat rooms
  • Primary Multimedia Sources (images, movies, sound, etc...)
  • Accompanying information for class texts (biographies, reviews, bibliographies, articles, etc..)
  • Writing models (freewrites, drafts, final products)
  • Links to student work (group projects, hypertext projects, student web pages, webfolios)
  • Reference/resource pages (documentation of on-line sources)
  • links to University resources

Example Online Syllabi

Example Class Sites

Teachers are using the Internet for Class Resources

The Internet gives all teachers and students access to resources that haven't been accessible to students. Access to these resources on the Internet gives students

  • opportunities to discover information for themselves
  • build background knowledge for course readings and lectures
  • develop interests that can lead to further, more in-depth, research
  • use primary sources in innovative ways
  • develop understandings they need to enter academic conversations

Example Resource Sites

Digitization Initiatives, Programs, & Archives