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E-motional Interaction Between Teaching Assistants and Students:Expressing emotions via WebCT
Unformatted Document Text:  Teaching, Emotion, & Technology 5 of interest in the use of the World Wide Web as a teaching resource (i.e., Bilota, Fiorito, Iovane, & Pantano, 1995; Campbell, Hurley, Jones, & Stephens, 1995; Goldberg, 1996; Ibrahim & Franklin, 1995). There are many kinds of computer-mediated instruction tools, such as CourseInfo, Topclass, and World Wide Web Course Tools (WebCT) to name a few. Among them, WebCT is one of the most popular on-line instruction tools used. According to MacCollum (1997), WebCT can help instructors put their courses online without having to learn intricate page-coding schemes. WebCT runs on a central server, and both professors and students can access the online course materials through their web browsers. WebCT can help instructors manage their courses by providing such functions as electronic mail and homework pass-ins; a worksheet and/or lecture notes depository; calendars; bulletin boards and chat rooms; a grading system that allows students and instructors to monitor their grades; online testing tools; and conferencing systems (Wernet, Olliges, & Delicath, 2000). WebCT assembles all these tools into a single package that can be used by course facilitators without extensive technical knowledge to create sophisticated web-based course environments. Students can access course information such as syllabi, schedules, assignments, grades, and class notes from any computer with Internet access. They can easily contact the instructor via e-mail by just clicking the mouse and choosing the instructor’s name on the screen. They can check the requirement of posted assignments at any time and can even prepare for future assignments, which can also be clearly listed on the site. Numerous studies focusing on different aspects of computer-mediated instruction tools have been conducted recently. Most of the researchers believe that the Internet is the fastest growing instructional medium in higher education today (LaRose & Whitten, 2000), and admit that the usage of computer-mediated instruction tools will bring potential improvements upon conventional classroom instruction (i.e., Hiltz, 1986; McComb, 1994; Ragsdale & Kassam, 1994; Webster &

Authors: Tsetsura, Katerina., Bigam, Mellisa., Buford, Laura. and Chen, Xiaolei.
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Teaching, Emotion, & Technology 5
of interest in the use of the World Wide Web as a teaching resource (i.e., Bilota, Fiorito, Iovane, &
Pantano, 1995; Campbell, Hurley, Jones, & Stephens, 1995; Goldberg, 1996; Ibrahim & Franklin,
1995). There are many kinds of computer-mediated instruction tools, such as CourseInfo, Topclass,
and World Wide Web Course Tools (WebCT) to name a few. Among them, WebCT is one of the
most popular on-line instruction tools used. According to MacCollum (1997), WebCT can help
instructors put their courses online without having to learn intricate page-coding schemes. WebCT
runs on a central server, and both professors and students can access the online course materials
through their web browsers. WebCT can help instructors manage their courses by providing such
functions as electronic mail and homework pass-ins; a worksheet and/or lecture notes depository;
calendars; bulletin boards and chat rooms; a grading system that allows students and instructors to
monitor their grades; online testing tools; and conferencing systems (Wernet, Olliges, & Delicath,
2000). WebCT assembles all these tools into a single package that can be used by course facilitators
without extensive technical knowledge to create sophisticated web-based course environments.
Students can access course information such as syllabi, schedules, assignments, grades, and class
notes from any computer with Internet access. They can easily contact the instructor via e-mail by
just clicking the mouse and choosing the instructor’s name on the screen. They can check the
requirement of posted assignments at any time and can even prepare for future assignments, which
can also be clearly listed on the site.
Numerous studies focusing on different aspects of computer-mediated instruction tools have
been conducted recently. Most of the researchers believe that the Internet is the fastest growing
instructional medium in higher education today (LaRose & Whitten, 2000), and admit that the usage
of computer-mediated instruction tools will bring potential improvements upon conventional
classroom instruction (i.e., Hiltz, 1986; McComb, 1994; Ragsdale & Kassam, 1994; Webster &


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