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Before "purchasing your ticket" or embarking upon telementoring projects similar to the Electronic Emissary, you must understand the role that facilitation plays in the success of the project. Various dictionaries describe a facilitator as one who assists, makes easier, or frees others from the difficulties of a situation. Thus, online facilitation could be described as the art of providing the support and scaffolding to experts in the field (Subject Matter Experts, or SMEs) and classroom teachers and students as they work together in an asynchronous environment to develop relationships that result in the achievement of an educational goal. Often, this interaction means that the facilitator must perform many roles and be ready to shift from one role to another. From a review of the literature, McGee and Boyd (1995) identified three types of behaviors that facilitators often display in the online interactions that occur during an Emissary project.




For further information regarding specific facilitation topics, take this opportunity to investigate the links below. Remember, the best tour guides are those who have explored much of the territory before setting up a journey, inviting others to participate, and purchasing tickets!


Judi Harris
judi.harris@mail.utexas.edu (www)
University of Texas at Austin
Department of Curriculum & Instruction

Handbook Author
Candace Figg
cfigg@mail.utexas.edu (www)
University of Texas at Austin
Instructional Technology Program