On-line tools: Chat-Rooms

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edit  ·  ToolkitKnowledge Management
(see also the WaterWiki Toolkit)
UNDP/BRC KM Approach | E-Moderation | On-line Community of Practice | Virtual CoP | Facilitation (based on an Interview with Patricia Keays)
On-Line Tools (emerged mostly from an online Course on E-moderation): Chat-Rooms | Wikis | Emails | The On-Line Classroom | SKYPE | Doodle - Easy scheduling of events | Time and Date | Create free on-line surveys
Other Resources: Learning Game | Brainstorming on "Running CoPs Successfully" | E-Moderator-Course#E-Moderator.27s_Toolbox E-Moderator Toolbox | Oxfam - Sharing Knowledge Handbook 2 | Web4Dev Nairobi 2007 (WaterWiki-presentation Nairobi web4dev-conf Nov07) | KM as tool for Tsunami Response | Communities of practice for development in the Middle East and North Africa



General Aspects:

  • The chat is a very effective instrument for synchronising phases of work,e.g. recap, plan further steps - or very suitable for quick decisions, common polls or brainstormings.


  • good tool to fresh up relationships of an existing group
  • not so suitable to create a new group from scratch

Technical Aspects:

  • good access also for low-connectivity members (as compared to On-Line Classroom Software)
  • Fast
  • Record is easily accessible afterwards (e.g. for people that could not join)

Facilitating a chat
A chat can be considerably improved, professionalised. The following basics are already making a difference:

  • select a subject, send a detailled invitation with targets and committing timetable(subtopics according to that)
  • assign roles (especially a moderator for a chat with more than 8 people is a professional function, expert, timekeeper, devils advocate..)
  • determine rules (contribute in the sequence of presence list, question and answer procedures, round circle talk; respect the timeframe)
  • recap and summarise from time to time the important results
  • provide a chatlog to everybody with highlighting the main decisions/results.


General Aspects:

  • Discussion threads can cross each other (a challenge to the moderator)
  • Not so suitable for people who have problems to type fast
  • Not so suitable for people who do not like to write

Technical Aspects:



1058 Rating: 2.8/5 (17 votes cast)