The Future of Virtual Classroom: Using Existing Features to Move Beyond Traditional Classroom Limitations

  • Michalis XenosEmail author
Conference paper
Part of the Advances in Intelligent Systems and Computing book series (AISC, volume 725)


This paper argues that the true potential of virtual classrooms in education is not fully exploited yet. The features available in most environments that have been incorporated as virtual classrooms are classified into two groups. The first group includes common features, related only to the emulation of a traditional classroom. In this group, the practical differences between traditional and virtual classroom are discussed. In addition, best practices that could aid the professors to make students feel like participating in a typical classroom are presented. The second group comprises of advanced features and practices, which extend the traditional classroom. In this group, examples of successful practices which could not be performed in a traditional classroom are introduced. Finally, a qualitative study with interviews of 21 experts from 15 countries is presented, showing that even these experts are not fully exploiting the advanced features that contemporary virtual classroom environments are offering.


eLearning Virtual classrooms 


  1. 1.
    Dirks, T.: Filmsite Movie Review, The Great Train Robbery (1903). Accessed 2 June 2017
  2. 2.
    Chambers, J.A., Sprecher, J.W.: Computer assisted instruction: current trends and critical issues. Commun. ACM 23(6), 332–342 (1980)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. 3.
    Hiltz, S.R.: The “virtual classroom”: Using computer-mediated communication for university teaching. J. Commun. 36(2), 95–104 (1986)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. 4.
    Dwyer, D., Barbieri, K., Doerr, H.M.: Creating a virtual classroom for interactive education on the Web. Comput. Netw. ISDN Syst. 27(6), 897–904 (1995)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. 5.
    Hiltz, S.R., Wellman, B.: Asynchronous learning networks as a virtual classroom. Commun. ACM 40(9), 44–49 (1997)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  6. 6.
    Schullo, S., Hilbelink, A., Venable, M., Barron, A.E.: Selecting a virtual classroom system: Elluminate live vs. Macromedia breeze (adobe acrobat connect professional). MERLOT J. Online Learn. Teach. 3(4), 331–345 (2007)Google Scholar
  7. 7.
    Finkelstein, J.: Learning in Real Time. Jossy-Bass Publishing Company, San Francisco (2006)Google Scholar
  8. 8.
    Xenos, M., Christodoulakis, D.: Software quality: the user’s point of view. In: Lee, M., Barta, B.-Z., Juliff, P. (eds.) Software Quality and Productivity. IAICT, pp. 266–272. Springer, Boston, MA (1995). CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  9. 9.
    Johnston, J., Killion, J., Oomen, J.: Student satisfaction in the virtual classroom. Internet J. Allied Health Sci. Pract. 3(2), 6 (2005)Google Scholar
  10. 10.
    Stavrinoudis, D., Xenos, M., Peppas, P., Christodoulakis, D.: Early estimation of users’ perception of software quality. Softw. Qual. J. 13(2), 155–175 (2005)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  11. 11.
    Stefani, A., Vassiliadis, B., Xenos, M.: On the quality assessment of advanced e-learning services. Interact. Technol. Smart Edu. 3(3), 237–250 (2006)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  12. 12.
    Katsanos, C., Tselios, N., Xenos, M.: Perceived usability evaluation of learning management systems: a first step towards standardization of the system usability scale in Greek. In: 16th Panhellenic Conference on Informatics, PCI 2012, pp. 302–307 (2012)Google Scholar
  13. 13.
    Singh, H.: Building effective blended learning programs. Edu. Technol.-Saddle Brook Then Englewood Cliffs NJ 43(6), 51–54 (2003)Google Scholar
  14. 14.
    Hrastinski, S.: The potential of synchronous communication to enhance participation in online discussions: a case study of two e-Learning courses. Inf. Manag. 45(7), 499–506 (2008)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  15. 15.
    Rovai, A.P., Wighting, M.J.: Feelings of alienation and community among higher education students in a virtual classroom. Internet High. Edu. 8(2), 97–110 (2005)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  16. 16.
    Crişan, A., Enache, R.: Virtual classrooms in collaborative projects and the effectiveness of the learning process. Procedia – Soc. Behav. Sci. 76, 226–232 (2013)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  17. 17.
    Marsap, A., Narin, M.: The integration of distance learning via internet and face to face learning: why face to face learning is required in distance learning via internet? Procedia – Soc. Behav. Sci. 1(1), 2871–2878 (2009)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  18. 18.
    Xenos, M., Skodras, A.: Evolving from a Traditional Distance Learning Model to e-Learning. In: 2nd International LeGE-WG Workshop on e-Learning and Grid Technologies: A Fundamental Challenge for Europe, Paris, France, 3rd and 4th March 2003, pp. 121–125 (2003)Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing AG, a part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Computer Engineering and Informatics DepartmentUniversity of PatrasPatrasGreece

Personalised recommendations