Jonathan P. Mathews, assistant professor of energy and geo-environmental engineering at Penn State University, teaches a high-enrollment (more than 400 students) general education online course, Energy and the Environment. Although he has two teaching assistants, the logistics of managing such a large class would be overwhelming without implementing the following course design and management ideas.
HIGHER ED TEACHING STRATEGIES FROM MAGNA PUBLICATIONS
Blended learning, which combines face-to-face and online learning activities into a single course, has experienced tremendous growth during the past few years. A blended learning course (also called a hybrid course) can satisfy students’ need for flexibility, as well as alleviate overcrowded classrooms. However, the biggest benefit to a well-designed blended course is a much improved teaching and learning experience.
Online course design is crucial to student success. It should reflect the intended learning outcomes and provide enough guidance for students to easily navigate the
One of the key strengths of a distance education program also can be a weakness. While web-based learning increases dramatically the pool of potential students that you can target, the number of competitors vying for those same students increases as well.
If you’re looking to improve threaded discussions in your online courses, consider using brief video clips as discussion prompts. When carefully selected and integrated into a course, these clips can lead students to higher-order thinking and appeal to auditory and visual learning styles.
Preparing students for the online learning experience and managing expectations are critical to student satisfaction, says Marie Gould, assistant professor and program manager of Business
Instant messaging can be an effective online learning tool that can build community and foster collaborative learning. The following are some suggestions from Debby Kilburn, computer science professor at Cero Coso Community College, for making the most of this tool.
In course evaluations, 90 percent of the students in John Thompson’s graduate-level education courses at the University of San Diego indicated that the online learning experience was as good as or better than the traditional classroom and 91 percent would take another online course.