Real-time conversations with Moodle Chat

Posted on: January 25, 2017 | By: Cheri Crabb, PhD | Filed under: Instructional Technologies, Moodle, Teaching & Learning

Collage of IM slangForums are the heart of communication in an online course because they provide the primary synchronous and asynchronous method for interaction. Instructors can create as many forums as needed for instruction.

Chat is a secondary mode of communication, typically synchronous, which provides instant feedback.  Unlike asynchronous forums that encourage learners to take time to compose thoughts before responding, chat rooms are informal places where learners follow the conversation on screen as it unfolds, much like observing a face-to-face conversation.  Text contributions are typically concise, written in an informal tone, often lacking appropriate grammar and filled with abbreviations such as:

  • RE: in response to what someone has contributed
  • FYI: for your information
  • F2F: face-to-face
  • THX: thanks
  • Qs: questions
  • Asmt: assessment

Chat is ideal for:

  • orientation to the course
  • introducing a unit
  • virtual office hours
  • virtual guest speakers
  • peer review of papers/projects
  • study groups for tests
  • online interviews
  • practicing a foreign language
  • online seminars
  • group discussion related to content/project/presentation/case studies
  • tutoring
  • generate ideas for writing
  • refine writing/project ideas
  • sharing a verbal process for problem solving


Image IM by Flickr user L.e.e / Creative Commons licensed BY-NC-ND 2.0

About the author

Cheri Crabb, PhD, Academic Technology Consultant with TLT, has a career in academia focused on instructional design and development using integrated electronic media systems for blended learning.
Dan Reis is an Instructional Technologist with Elon University’s Teaching and Learning Technologies.

Cheri Crabb, PhD

I am dedicated to working with online faculty at Elon University and pride myself on designing quality curriculum advocating instructional technology usage. My career in academia is focused on instructional design and development using integrated electronic media systems. I earned my Doctor of Philosophy in Instructional Systems Design and Development from Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University while representing NASA’s Office of Education as their first Graduate Studies Research Program doctoral fellowship recipient.

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