Eck, C., Layfield, K., DiBenedetto, C., & Gore, J. (2021). School-based agricultural education teachers competence of synchronous online instruction tools during the COVID-19 pandemic. Journal of Agricultural Education, 62(2), 137-147.

The COVID-19 pandemic forced educators to move course delivery to online learning with little or no
advanced training. One of the immediate concerns of the online course delivery was readiness in using
the synchronous learning tools available to school districts. Additionally, moving all students to online
learning environments presented a challenge for those teachers who knew little about accessibility
tools. The purpose of this study was to assess the awareness and self-perceived competence levels of
SBAE teachers in South Carolina related to synchronous online instruction and application of
accessibility tools during the COVID-19 pandemic. The majority of the teachers indicated they used
Google Meet as the institution's synchronous delivery platform. Of those using Google Meet, their
ability to use the mobile application to start meetings and use virtual backgrounds was low. The second
most used synchronous delivery platform was Zoom. Some of the skill gaps SBAE teachers listed while
using Zoom included breakout rooms, the polling feature, and removing unwanted participants. SBAE
teachers reported very low competence in using accessibility features provided in Microsoft Word and
PowerPoint applications. Recommendations included future in-service training for SBAE teachers in
using advanced levels of Zoom, Google Meet, and WebEx features. Also, training for SBAE teachers
on the importance of accessibility and the tools provided is warranted. Faculty teaching educational
technologies in pre-service programs for SBAE teachers are also encouraged to adapt curricula to
support these skills.

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