Are You Synchronous Or Asynchronous?

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    Let’s start from the meaning of synchronous: “That occurs or is done at the same time as another fact, phenomenon or circumstance, in perfect temporal correspondence with it, or with the same intervals, speed or period as another fact, phenomenon, movement, mechanism, etc.”

    The word that is usually associated with the fact where a group of people synchronized their watches in order to be punctual for a specific activity, is possibly uncommon today given the rigor of smart watches.

    Today I would value that it is a recent term in education and in particular in online teaching through the use of cell phones, computers, tablets and other technological means.

    Its real meaning

    Synchronous learning is only viable for online studies, through a chat between professors and students at a time pre-established by the institution, which if I try to simplify it, I would summarize it as: the professor and his students are in class at this moment “live ” exchanging information (video class, group work, forums, etc.) in real-time or immediately through chat.

    And in the case of asynchronous?

    The letter a in front implies negation, therefore we refer to what is not synchronous, from which we can deduce that it is not executed in real time and also the academic activity is carried out offline (disconnected) and that later connected or online it is shared to their students or that the teacher receives, for example: evaluation results, presentation of previously oriented teamwork to be done at home, also called non-face-to-face work.One benefit of asynchronous learning is that the student can go at their own pace.

    Having learned the above, this leads me to several reflections, which I share with you: Should the “shared” class have virtually the same duration as the one formally planned by the school or institution? Will you have to change your syllabus or class plan, prioritizing specific and basic aspects of the content, so that the student is not “punished in front of a camera”? Shouldn’t the student have more time to carry out their exercises individually and collectively, considering this moment as part of their class time at home?

    It is obvious that the administration must control the “synchronous and asynchronous times”, which breaks with the traditional scheme, that Mate’s class is from such and such a time. Time than the teacher, and in particular the asynchronous one to which I give much more relevance, being this established in the best-agreed schedule with their students, where the teacher can “dialogue-chat”, evaluate the works, clarify individual and group doubts, whose results can be taken and analyzed, as well as discussed synchronously.

    The foregoing would avoid more unpaid overtime for the teacher, and allow him in turn to concentrate on the search for adequate information, selection or preparation of videos, motivating strategies that allow broad participation and not in a static mode by the students who share only their faces to listen to “the teacher” and at the same time to their classmates. To teach a good class both synchronously and asynchronously, it’s planning and development to change attitudes in students requires a lot of time.

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