On completion of the CHEP (Certified Higher Education Professional) course, I have learned the importance of effective engagement and support for students who are taking Online Courses. First impression are very important and none more so than in the Online environment. It is key that first week of instruction to show students that you are fully engaged. Important areas to focus on initially are: Introductions posted to the student lounge, outline clear expectations and show excellent availability for any questions that students may have. By establishing your presence as the teacher early, you show students that you are both visible and available.
Teaching methods should be diverse and appealing to students who are often on the go and need the flexibility of using various technologies. Laptops, Smartphone, and IPads/Tablets should all be able to access the online eLearning course 24/7
I have learned that the best online teachers use a combination of both synchronous and asynchronous activities, creating a blend of traditional online learning styles with newer, more collaborative audio and visual tools. Working with a mix of activities makes the content more interesting and exciting, increasing student engagement. When teachers integrate technology into the online classroom, whether by using tools, Blogs, Wikis online resources, or apps, they have the power to engage students at their level of interest. The key is to find the top technological tools and to incorporate them into lessons in clever ways.
Feedback should be continuous during the eLearning process, with constructive feedback offered as soon as possible so that students can clearly identify which behaviors or skills need to be improved.
By continuously giving individualized feedback, which incorporates Rubrics meaningful continuous evaluation, occurs. Supplementing communication with a phone call can also add additional quality for more complex or sensitive issues where a more personalized environment is achieved.