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Barbara Kołodziejczak, Magdalena Roszak, Anna Ren-Kurc, Wojciech Kowalewski, Wiesław Półjanowicz

Abstract: The value of classes held through distance learning portals is not only determined by the quality of the learning resources that are produced, but also by the efficiency of the specific forms of communication, user interactions, and the diversity  of  students'  and  teachers'  activities.  Without  carefully  planned  and properly  used  forms  of  communication,  difficulties  may  emerge  in  the  distance learning process. Participants of e-learning courses, particularly teachers, should become acquainted with the tools available in the given learning portal so as to be able to implement them successfully in the exchange of information, integration and motivation of the learners' community. The purpose of this article is to characterize certain selected,  most commonly used synchronous and asynchronous communication tools available on e-learning portals and to identify the methods of employing them in a distance learning course. The authors, who have practical experience in distance learning in an academic context, aimed at directing the readers' attention to the frequently underestimated aspect of selecting the communication tools and methods for e-learning courses.
Keywords: communication tools, e-learning portal, videoconference, chat, forum, Wiki, e-mail, calendar, academic education, distance education

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