Facilitating Courses in Digital Learning Environments
- Communicate Clearly
Email? Skype? Phone? Raven?
Tell your students!
Tell your students how and when you prefer communicating.
Video introductions help students connect with you.
Communicate course expectations immediately and clearly.
Remind students about upcoming assignments.
Communicate with any and all tools available.
Have weekly intro sessions.
Tell students how they can contact you and how long it takes you to respond.
Do you expect you will be absent for any days? Traveling? Holiday? Let students know asap! They can then plan when to contact you.
- Instructors should establish themselves as approachable, engaging, and interactive leaders.
- Provide quick feedback.
- Include asynchronous and synchronous and small/large activities to develop rapport through teamwork and cooperation and collaboration between students.
- Assign activities like problem solving, designed so each student can have their own task.
2. Instructor Presence
3. Sense of Community
Encourage socialization to promote collaboration and engaging exchanges
Be clear about expectations, both on discussion boards and in group work
Help personalize learning when possible
Check-in with students who seem absent.
4. Effective Course Design
Effective course design is more than the aesthetics of a course! It should include:
- a variety of synchronous and asynchronous activities,
- discussion posts that provoke thoughtfulness and critical thinking,
- information re: technology,
- group and individual work, and
- alternative methods of meeting assignment objectives.
Lead students through content and assignments (video and screencast? Moodle Collaborate?).
Content should connect to real-world experiences, students personal-professional experiences, or even to instructor's experience. Bring lessons to life!
5. Content Relates to Learning Objectives
For example, a unit about UDL could ask students to find awful fails and post about them--fun, but also useful and real!
External resources shoud need just one click!
Learning objectives must be clear!
Content should be germane to learning objectives, and assignments should clearly link to improving understanding of learning objectives.
All assignments should have clear rubrics, and instructors should review rubrics with students.