8 Lessons Learned from Teaching Online

(fun, upbeat music) – High-touch is more
important than high-tech. When a student is in
crisis, or a student wants to brainstorm an idea, when
they need a question answered, I want to be efficient,
and one of the best ways of doing that is using the telephone. And so that’s a real
high-touch way that has been really effective for me,
and I had really avoided it for a long time because I
thought, no, that’s really not the technology of online education, but everything is the
technology of online education. – Establish social presence using digital storytelling. When you start a face-to-face classroom, when that professor
comes in, you’re looking at their clothes, the way they act, their jokes, the stories,
all these things. They size up who they are. So for me, one of the things I leveraged, or relied on, is the
power of storytelling. The power of story telling– telling stories is a great way
to establish your presence, and to help students get to
know each other as real people. – Use technology intentionally. I think we get so excited. I know I do about new tools
and new digital communities, and social media tools and
technologies that we can use to really enhance what
we’re trying to achieve with the students in our courses. But we sometimes let the tools
drive our decision making, as opposed to going back
to our learning objectives and saying, “What do we
really want to achieve? “Does the tool help us achieve that?” Just because we get really excited. – The power of external resources. There’s tons of resources out there, that if you just take the time to look, it’s amazing what you can use to supplement your online courses. You don’t have to do
all the work yourself. It doesn’t always have to
be contained in the LMS or in the textbook, and
hopefully though that, also, help encourage and teach your students that there’s great resources out there if you just spend the time. – Make your expectations explicit. – Being explicit in your
directions, in your expectations, in everything that you are
trying to achieve with students, that so often we keep that secret, we keep that hidden, as faculty. We know what it is. Sometimes we don’t even know
that we’re keeping it hidden. – Make it really easy for
students to find out what is it that they have to do
that week, when is it due, what are the points, what’s it
worth, those types of things. – Fun and playfulness and the unexpected. Doing something that’s
different can really jolt them, and re-energize them, and re-engage them in a way that allows them to
express themselves creatively. So that it’s not just writing an essay, but let’s write a screen
play that demonstrates your understanding of these concepts. Anything that adds a little playfulness, I think just re-engages people, and makes the online experience
not feel so cookie-cutter. (fun, upbeat music) – You have to login regularly. You probably should plan
at least five days a week to be logging into your course. Now that doesn’t mean you have to login all day, five days a week. Sometimes people, I think,
misconstrue that and say things like, “Well, online learning’s just “so much more work these days.” Well, I don’t necessarily buy that, but it’s very distributed. The faculty that I know that
are the most successful, in my own experiences has been, they log in regularly to their courses. – The power of personal feedback. One of the things that I find
that students really value, and that they take away from,
is when they get specific individual feedback that’s meaningful, and by not just giving feedback, but giving audio/video feedback. I’ve had students come back
to me and they really comment on how it was very
meaningful to hear that even that inflection in my voice, nd that they could actually walk away with the positive comments. There’s a lot of times where
you just type stuff out, they just see the negative
just comes through, right? (fun, upbeat music)

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