As we start thinking about the effects of the corona pandemic on the fall semester, students will be heading back to campus and digital campuses to embark on the next chapter of learning. Online learning comes with many challenges, which are vastly different from those experienced in the traditional classroom. Use these tips to help students be successful in their online courses.
Involve Students in Learning Communities
One difference between online learning and traditional instruction that has long concerned educators is the lack of personal interaction between students and their instructors or their classmates. Get students involved in learning communities that are related to their lessons or their extracurricular interests to keep them engaged. These may also be offered online, where group facilitators can ensure that students have a grasp of lesson plans and course content.
Micro-learning offers students a way to engage with content on a smaller scale, encountering information in 5- to 10-minute windows. Whether it's on screen or off, take breaks between longer lessons to offer videos, photos, interactive objects with learning embedded in each activity. These short breaks may increase student engagement when they return to the lesson, feeling refreshed and ready to participate.
Recognize the Importance of Informal Learning
For young people, learning is occurring all the time. Self-guided learning can be just as valuable as formal education, especially for students who excel in independent learning environments. When informal learning occurs outside of eLearning or outside of the school day, encourage it and provide time for students to explore and expand their knowledge.
Take Advantage of Mobile-Friendly Activities
Mobile devices are quickly becoming the go-to source of information, especially for young people. Augmented gaming and learning programs have used mobile devices to their advantage, allowing students to interact with a screen and the outside world at the same time. Watch for opportunities to provide this dynamic learning experience, which will keep students engaged in the learning process.
Providing students with opportunities to excel inside and outside the virtual classroom, as well as with augmented technology, will give them the structure and variety they need to stay engaged. With these tips, students can persist through online courses and have a successful year.
University of Washington