What It Means to Be a Modern Online Educator

Traditional college instruction is part of a well-established tradition that has remained fairly unchanged over time. Becoming an instructor in this environment has meant conformity to teaching standards that have also remained fairly unchanged. A college professor is associated with someone who is a subject matter expert, likely to achieve a position with tenure, and have dual roles as an instructor and researcher. It is expected that they will be published authors of scholarly journal articles that have been peer-reviewed and contributed knowledge to their field. While this form of education and instructor still exists, there is another academic institution that has also been established and it is an online college and university.

For a modern form of online education you will not likely find any positions that are labeled professor. Most online universities hire adjuncts and many refer to their instructors as facilitators. Some universities expect their instructors to complete annual professional development requirements but rarely does that include publishing peer-reviewed journal articles. What is needed now more than ever is a new category of educator, one who meets the needs of students who participate in this modern form of education. Now is also the time for online universities to embrace this new form of instructors, those who can be called a Modern Educator.

From Traditional to Online Teaching

The traditional format for educating students is the lecture-driven class. The instructor delivers information to students and they must demonstrate what they have learned through various assessments. They know that their instructor or professor is an expert in the particular subject area for their class. This method of instruction is the same style that is used in primary education and it is teacher-centered. As technology has brought new possibilities for the field of education a new format developed – online courses and online degrees. At first traditional educators taught these courses but over time that has changed, especially as adjuncts filled a majority of the instructional roles. Now with online degree programs and online schools having been fully established in the education field, a new type of educator was also emerging.

Evolution to Modern Teaching

With the growth of online learning came the need for hiring a large volume of instructors. Some online universities have classes that begin weekly and others offer courses starting monthly. Hiring adjuncts was the answer and the majority of jobs teaching undergraduate students have been filled by instructors holding a master’s degree in the subject field they were teaching. Over time the number of instructors qualified to teach online has grown substantially and now many adjunct positions require a doctorate degree. What has contributed to the increased pool of available online instructors is the fluctuation in enrollment numbers, the limited number of full-time online instructor positions, and the increase in degree specializations – especially those related to online teaching. There are also many online schools that offer online teaching specializations and those students who complete their master’s degree are added to the pool. It is estimated that at present there are nearly two million adjunct online instructors teaching online courses.

The requirements for teaching online also may include continuing education. Most online universities require some form of annual professional development. Those universities generally offer workshops and training courses as a means of fulfilling this requirement. Publishing scholarly journals can be used to help meet the professional development requirements but most schools do not require it. These modern teachers are also different from a college professor by the manner in which they are allowed to present themselves in the classroom. An online instructor is often called a facilitator and rarely is this position referred to as a professor – although some instructors will refer to themselves as a professor to establish their position in the learning process. Many online universities tell their instructors to use their first name as a means of creating a casual and approachable image – even if the instructor has a doctorate degree.

An Example of a Modern Educator

Within the field of online education there is a significant difference among educator types. There are those with a master’s degree who can teach undergraduate courses and there are those with doctorate degrees who can teach both undergraduate and graduate students. For those schools that offer doctoral degree programs, an expectation for instructors to be published in a manner similar to that of a college professor may still be in place. But there is a need for a new standard. If traditional methods of learning do not apply to online education, then traditional instructor qualifications should also not apply to online educators. Now is the time for a new instructional category, one that is referred to as a Modern Educator.

My work as an educator has evolved from traditional college teaching to that of online teaching and now I have become a Modern Educator. Instead of spending months (or possibly longer) trying to become published in a scholarly journal, I publish online articles. Instead of my work being available only to those who have access to and read scholarly journals, I now have an opportunity to reach a broader audience. My work is available as soon as I write and publish it, and more importantly – I understand how to use social media. I am connected to an international basis of educators, universities, and students through the use of social media.

Through social media it is possible to share ideas and resources, along with online articles, blog posts, and other intellectual contributions. This also applies to transformation of the publishing process. Instead of waiting to find a publisher and go through the traditional publishing route, I have self-published e-books. This has allowed me to become highly engaged in the field of education and it has redefined what it means to be a college instructor. Becoming a Modern Educator indicates what online instructors should be involved with and online schools developing as a requirement for their professional development.

Steps to Becoming a Modern Educator

Whether you have a master’s degree or doctorate degree, if you teach online courses you need professional development. But this should be more than taking a workshop – it needs to involve making an intellectual contribution. In addition, the work of a Modern Educator also needs to be involved in some form of social or professional networking. Here are some steps you can take and strategies you can use to become a Modern Educator.

#1. Write a Blog – This provides a platform to share your expertise and summarize your knowledge. As you continue to conduct research for your areas of professional interest and you can include what you have learned through your blog posts. There are numerous free resources that will allow you to create and share your blog, such as Word Press.

#2. Write Online Articles – Instead of taking the time required to write and submit articles to scholarly journals, which can always be an option for you, find a resource that allows you to publish online articles. The articles you write, which are based upon your knowledge and experience, will allow you to reach a broader audience, refine your writing skills, and establish yourself as a subject matter expert. I utilize Ezine Articles, which is an article marketing database.

#3. Use Social Networking – Every online educator needs to learn how to establish their presence via technology. It only makes sense that if you work in a technology-enabled environment you should also know how to be engaged in online communities. LinkedIn provides a means of professional networking, finding groups that match your interest, and even finding online jobs. Twitter can connect you to an international base of educators, students, and universities – providing a place to share resources.

#4. Develop a Website -If you find that you are highly ambitious and want to develop more than a blog you could also build your own website. This would be a place for you to house resources that you have created, which could be shared with educators and students. There are free webhosting services available and others that charge a small fee.

#5. Write E-Books – The field of publishing has changed and now authors are taking back control by making their books available in an e-book format. Kindle and Nook devices are the most popular devices. Kobo is another device that is gaining popularity because it can be used on mobile devices such as Blackberry. You will likely need to hire someone to format the book, sign up for an account to distribute your e-book, and once it is ready you can have it available in a relatively short amount of time.

Maintaining a Modern Educator Status

A Modern Educator is someone who does more than teach online classes. They are active in the field of education and their chosen subject matter. They know how to teach using technological tools and engage in a virtual community of other educators through social media. The Modern Educator is also conducting research and making intellectual contributions through technological means. The work they publish is done through technologically-enabled resources and made immediately available for their intended audience. They know how to use social media to promote their work and share resources with other educators and students.

It is time now for the Modern Educator mentality to become the standard for online learning. Instruction has adapted in format from traditional to online, and so too must the instructor. It is also important that online schools and hiring specialists recognize the new Modern Educator. This is someone who has likely taught for several institutions because of fluctuating enrollments and staff changes; however, what matters most is their ongoing professional development and intellectual contributions. The most desirable candidate for an online teaching position is someone with more than extensive work as an online educator. It is someone who can also utilize technological tools as a means of publishing their work and connecting with other educators. A Modern Educator is the new college professor and the one most prepared for teaching through the use of technology.

Assistive Technology An Independent Life For Everyone

Not depending on others is very important for every human being. As technology progresses everyday and the development includes specially designed devices and equipment, everyone can now enjoy an independent life style. Even people with disabilities can have a better life, avoiding frustration or incapacity to communicate. Assistive technology is for a great help for those who need to feel secure when they are by themselves, even if they have certain disabilities. Our assistive technology products meet their needs and offer an alternative for a better life. Communication for example, is one of the biggest problems for people with disabilities, but our assistive technology products make it easier. Even if your problem is about hearing, seeing or moving around, the solutions we offer can solve any type of problem related to physical challenges.

We also offer you a great variety of products as furniture, software, workstations or switches, specially created for an independent living. You can enjoy assistive technology products in your own house and anywhere you go, avoiding frustrations and difficulties you were exposed to before. Assistive technology is even for people who suffer from Parkinson, Lou Getring’s Disease aka Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis, or Multiple Sclerosis. All the products we recommend are easy to use, the technology being adapted to every special need. Now, deaf-blind people will be able to communicate between themselves or with other people because assistive technology makes it possible.

If you want to make your children’s life easier, now you can do it with the help of special communication software or CDs that contains all kinds of information about social activities. Eating out, shopping, transportation are some of the social activities children need to learn about before they go out. This and some other assistive technology products can help your children have a better, independent life, even if they have some disabilities. It’s important to mention that these teaching products are not only for children, but also for people who have found themselves, all of a sudden, in the undesirable situation of an accident that has affected their health.

Our furniture is designed for people who need better access in the kitchen, bathroom or in the bedroom and for those who need special workstations in their homes or offices. You don’t have to feel uncomfortable at your desk anymore, because now you have the perfect solution, easily accessible through an online order.

In one word, assistive technology is for those who want to raise the standard of living, for those who need to increase the quality of life because an independent living is now possible through technology. This is why our products come to meet your special needs, helping you achieve what you want.

An Information Technology Degree And An Open Door

Of all the most sought-after degree programs there are, the information technology degree is the one that is currently in the hotseat. Information technology is a branch of engineering that basically has to do with utilizing computers and their software to exchange, process and save information. Because there are different types of technology available, there are several different types of IT professionals.

The word technology is widespread now and covers a vast array of different applications; and it would seem that those applications are almost limitless. From working on computers as a systems analyst to selling computer systems based on a strong foundation of knowledge, getting a degree in information technology can be just the thing to not only push a career forward but give a person just that much more of an edge over their competition.

An assortment of specialized areas in information technology allows for the everchanging and evergrowing needs in the field to be met without alteration. A qualified individual in any one of the IT areas will be able to provide a company with a level of optimum productivity; especially when the learned skills are mixed with the basic fundamentals of business and their applications. It is no secret that employers tend to look for prospective employees who can provide a strong foundation in order to keep operations smooth.

Project management theory, computer programming, database and network systems are only just a few of the lessons that apply to getting an information technology degree. Hands-on training is great for building confidence and provides a level of comfort when entering a professional work environment. Professional certifications and dual degree programs can not only upgrade IT degrees, they can boost resumes and help to achieve the earning power that one has been looking for. A fully certified IT professional with a degree can expect to make $45,000 per year and up.

As this is one of the fastest growing fields around (and it looks to stay that way), there is always a need for those skilled in information technology. One would be hard pressed to find any area of everyday life where computers aren’t already in use; and that is why the demand is and will always be what it is. An added plus is that with the use of computers being so widespread, there is hardly any place on the map a person can go that doesn’t need workers with an IT degree.

With computers and technology, the learning is never done. As the demand continues to grow and change, so will the technology that complements our every day life. The person seeking a degree in information technology must be truly interested in computers and have a thirst for knowledge. There must be willingness and an aptitude for learning something new as software and technology upgrades itself at an amazing rate. The IT professional is a person who is alert and able to keep up; and better yet, is one step ahead of the game at every turn.

The person who has taken the time to earn his or her information technology degree will have opened the door to a career path that is wide and all encompassing. While one path in information technology may be right, that path can often lead to others; and the more skills behind a person the more well rounded and better off they’ll be in their career. Information technology has come a long way and will continue on for many years to come. It is definitely one of those professions that will have the opportunity to see what tomorrow brings, today.

Get Approved For A Bad Credit Home Improvement Loan

Home improvement projects are wonderful, but can quickly become expensive. There are a number of factors that should be taken into consideration when planning home improvements. In some situations, contracting the services of professionals, buying tools and supplies are necessary for completion. There can be a strong inclination to withdraw from your personal savings for home improvements, especially if there is a large repair involved that is an absolute necessity. This can lead to a strain a family’s financial security. If this is the case, you might want to try to get approved for a bad credit home improvement loan.

Making home improvements are one way to increase the appraisal value of your house. However, if your have a bad credit history, your chances for loan approval will certainly decrease. Banks and other financial lenders take your credit history into consideration when trying to get approved for any type of home improvement loan. The lower your credit score, the more difficulty you will have in obtaining a home improvement loan.

Even though this is not encouraging news, don’t give up just yet! You may still be able to qualify for some types of bad credit home improvement loans. Lenders do exist that are willing to approve home improvement loans for persons with a bad credit history, however, possessing sufficient equity in your home will likely be a major requirement.

Unfortunately, bad credit home improvement loans have higher interest rates. But there is a bright side, because if scheduled loan payments are made on time, the credit rating of the borrower will increase provided there are no other negative factors affecting the credit score. After a period of 12 to 24 months of timely payments, you may be able to refinance your bad credit home improvement loan for a lower interest rate.

Here are some excellent tips on ways to get approved for a bad credit home improvement loan and get the lowest possible interest rate for your current credit score:

1. Research
Take time to research your available options. Knowing your options will be a large help when it comes to finding the lowest possible interest rates on a bad credit home improvement loan.

2. Recommendations
Talk to other people who may have gone through the bad credit home improvement loan approval process. Recommendations from friends or co-workers could save you hours worth of your own research time. You may get information from people who have completed the process that you might not learn otherwise.

3. Multiple Lender Quote Comparison
Always get more than one lender quote. You should compare home improvement loan quotations from no less than three or four lenders before attempting to make a decision.

4. Good Rapport
Contact the lenders with which you think you have the best chance of getting an approval for a bad credit home improvement loan. Once a good relationship has been established, lenders may be more likely to give you a lower interest rate.

Improving your credit score as much as possible before you apply for a loan is the best way to get approved for a bad credit home improvement loan. Your bad credit home improvement loan should be seen as an opportunity to both increase the value of your home as well as improve your credit score in the future.

Tips For Home Improvement Home Equity Loan Financing

No one will argue that increasing the value of your home through home improvement projects is a great idea. However, large home improvement projects can become quite expensive. Home improvements lighten your wallet and empty your savings account. Careful planning and thinking about all your financing options is necessary before beginning your home improvement project. Below are a few tips for home improvement home equity loan financing to take into consideration.

Home improvement home equity loans are becoming one of the most popular loans when it comes to home improvement. Because the interest is deductible from your taxes, It’s a viable tool for borrowing money. Interest rates on home improvement home equity loans are usually lower than the interest rates of other types of loans. Another good thing about home improvement home equity loans is that they are fairly easy to get.

Home improvement home equity loans are great loans for home improvement because the project can greatly increase the appraisal value of your home. This is a loan that is obtained to be able to get additional investments for use in the future. Home improvement projects such as bathroom additions, bedrooms and home extensions can increase the value of a house. However, some home improvement projects don’t really result in increasing the value of the house. The construction of a swimming pool is one such project.

Take care when getting a home improvement home equity loan. Don’t forget that the collateral that you are putting up against the loan is your own house. If you can’t make the payments and make them on time, you could end up losing your home. You borrowed money for the sole purpose of improving your house and losing your house would be a disasterous situation indeed.

Many people use home improvement home equity loans for other reasons. The money is sometimes spent finance other expenses such as vacations or everyday needs. Steady appreciation of their houses is what people rely on to be able to pay for the debt. If the value of their house depreciates at the end of any period, they are in huge financial hot water. This is why home improvement home equity loans should be used for the improvement of your home because the risks of depreciation are lower.

To avoid being indebted because of home improvement projects, these tips for home improvement home equity loan financing should be kept in mind. Home improvements are a great way to increase the value of your house but always use your head when getting home improvement home equity loans to finance these projects.