ISLAMABAD - An eminent US Professor Dr John Tashner of Appalachian State University on Friday visited Allama Iqbal Open University (AIOU) and shared his experience and expertise with the faculty members about the use of instructional technologies for promoting online courses.

During his talks held here in connection with the university's distinguished-lecture series, he underlined the need of developing online coaching and appreciated the ongoing efforts of AIOU facilitating the students with the state-of-the-art designing system.

Vice-Chancellor Dr Shahid Siddiqui in his welcome remarks said that the AIOU would be enhancing its collaboration with national and international institutions to develop online courses. As a pilot project first online course on MPhil-level education will be introduced from the next semester.

The university's instructional designing department has already developed various online teaching devices for the help of students. Hectic efforts are being made to bring qualitative improvement in the overall educational network of the university, taking maximum advantage of the new technologies, he added.

Dr John Tashner was of the view that the students could be effectively engaged in group discussion and projects' development through online interaction among the students themselves and between the students and the teachers. He said new instructional technologies had generated interest in the formation of various kinds of online learning communities for distance education. In USA, a wide range of distributed learning communities are currently involved in training, education and social networking.

Through the help of slides, Dr John Tashner explained various techniques and skills for engaging students through online educational system. The use of instructional technologies in online teaching has been proved very successful in the USA.

The university's Registrar Dr Nowshad Khan highlighted on the occasion the ongoing cooperation with the international institutions in developing online courses.