Wednesday, August 19

Is Boltelicious Keyboard Skills Required To Facilitate Online Effectively?

Can you eat chicken nuggets a few hours before a 100 meters sprint race, and smash the world record with ease?

If you are Usain Bolt, YES YOU CAN! Although, I have never been thrilled about eating chicken nuggets, I somehow feel like eating some right now. Since he went to McDonalds, I suppose... Nope... I will stick to eating chicken rice at the Mamak stall. A couple of juicy chicken legs with rice, and a mixture of different vegetables, curry and red hot chili peppers. Now, that is something I can't resist!


First, thank you Usain Bolt for showing the world that you don't need to look like an old version Arnold, and be as stiff as a bull dog to blow away your opponents in a 100 meter sprint race. Just watching those long legs shuffle with such speed, and seeing him enjoy his way to victory, was simply thrilling. His confidence and natural ability is breathtakingly breathtaking.

The most amazing part is that he has probably a lot more to go, and I am predicting that he will within the next three years run exactly 9.34 seconds, based on my secret futuristic sense. He can certainly improve his start, pick-up, upper-leg power, arm movement, nutrition intake (less chicken nuggets!), and so on. In short, he is still far away from reaching his peak.

So, what has that got to do with Keyboard skills...

So, is 'Boltelicious' (what? 40+ words per minute. Actually, it should be 95+!) keyboard skills required to facilitate online effectively?

If you ask me, I would say 'YES' with a big 'YES'! Since I started with e-learning in 2001, I have noticed again and again that educators whom are most resistant to computers and e-learning are often those that lack basic keyboard or typing skills.

From what I have learned after observing especially Professors and Senior Lecturers (PSL) in action, is that many of them often lack the ability to type quickly. It is often the one, two, three, four fingers magic show! It wouldn't also surprise me if there is a strong correlation between poor typing skills and de-motivation to facilitate online learning.

The faster you type, the more time you have to think (Better yet, do it at the same time!). The beauty of great typing skills comes when you are capable of typing as fast as (or faster than) you think. Also, then you don't need to say, "What was I thinking again?".

In short, to improve the success of any e-learning or online facilitation initiative, I believe it is vital that educators (and students) have good keyboard and typing skills (say at least 30+ words per minute), so that they can efficiently answer e-mails, forum posts, chat sessions, develop content, projects, assignments, and so on.

If you don't have great keyboard skills already, don't worry. Just ignore your stubborn ego, and start practicing. You don't need to spend money, because here are a bunch of free learning tools to assist you:
    Take a typing speed test and practice typing online.

  • Peter's Online Typing Course
    Provides a set of free online typing lessons and typing exercises for beginning typists, and frustrated hunt-and-peckers who want to move from four-finger typing to full-blown touch typing.

  • Goodtyping
    Free online typing course. Please try it without registering. If you like what you practice, then bother to register :)

  • TypingWeb
    is a free online typing tutor & keyboarding tutorial for typists of all ages. All skill levels will benefit from TypingWeb's free keyboarding lessons.

  • Rapid Typing
    A typing game, where the training takes place in a “virtual picturesque underwater world” adding some fun to the learning.

  • PowerTyping
    An online free typing tutor for kids, students and adults alike!

  • BBC Typing Tutorial
    Aimed at the younger kids, but is great fun for anyone learning typing.

Have fun mastering your keyboard skills, which will empower your potential and ability to really enjoy online facilitation in a 'Boltelicious' way. Just remember to practice and ignore your stubborn and lazy ego (if so!) :)

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