About this course: Emerging technologies are quickly gaining momentum in the field of virtual K-12 instruction. In this course, we will explore how the latest trends in the use of technology affect student learning and engagement. What innovative learning spaces and tools are available to instructors? How can instructors best utilize free and open resources to more deeply engage students in their learning? What impact can the use of emerging technologies have on student retention and performance? We will discuss the possibilities and challenges of using technology in fully online environments, although many of the ideas can be applied to blended and traditional environments as well. Learners will compare and contrast tools for use in K-12 virtual instruction, as well as examine best practices for implementing and managing these tools. Upon completing this course, you will be able to: 1. Understand the role of technology in the distribution of content, the facilitation of collaborative activities, and the assessment of students, courses, and organizations. 2. Identify and evaluate existing and emerging technologies for their value in virtual course instruction and curriculum development. 3. Design and assess a learning activity that utilizes social learning tools. 4. Design and assess a learning activity or curricular program that uses game-based strategies and/or badges to deepen student engagement in virtual courses. 5. Research, critically evaluate, and employ open content in virtual education. 6. Debate the role of MOOCs in virtual K-12 education.