A question I hear often about online course design is, “Where should I start?” In fact, that question was in my email inbox this morning – asked by a manufacturing expert who has been teaching an on-campus course in a university. His course is captured as video and made available to online learners, so he’d like to improve his course design to better connect with his distance learners.
If you too are teaching students in a traditional classroom, while also teaching online learners, you’ll find that the steps you take to engage your online learners will often improve the engagement among your on-campus students too.
Here are five tips for improving the design of your online course and building engagement with your students:
1 – Seek input from an instructional designer on staff with the organization for which you are teaching. If you are teaching through a department that doesn’t have an instructional designer on staff, you will likely find that the department can connect you with instructional designers who work for departments that provide services across the university or school system.
Here are a few of my favorite university web resources designed to help instructors create awesome courses!
To check out what is available at Udemy, you can click the button logo below (which is my affiliate link to Udemy).
4 – Ask your students about the ways they prefer to consume content in an online learning environment. Today’s learners, whether they are children, teenagers, college students or adults, usually have experiences from other online courses that they can share. I’m always asking students what types of online learning activities they engage in the best or find the most useful. And then I ask them what they would do differently if they were creating the course on their own. Before you start designing, ask questions of your target audience. Do a short, online survey. Ask friends and family about their online learning experiences.
I’ll do another blog post in the future to let you know the results of how that worked out. If you’d like to be one of my Course Champions in this course, I’d be delighted to have you come along for the experience. We can learn together!