Students and employees are increasingly turning to online courses to further their professional or educational development. Because teaching an online course differs from teaching in a traditional classroom, teachers must adapt or develop their skills to make their content delivery effective and engaging for students.
Many teachers have been pushed into the deep end due to the sudden and urgent rise in demand for online tutoring jobs. Teachers accustomed to a classroom setting are required to switch to an online environment. Given the closure of numerous educational establishments during lockdowns, the shift has not been gradual but rather a spontaneous demand, but the availability of teaching platforms like Preply has been of immense help.
Teaching in a classroom necessitates a distinct set of abilities and a different perspective than teaching online. Expecting a competent classroom instructor to also be an excellent online teacher is equivalent to expecting a good carpenter to be a good furniture builder. Although they are both very accomplished woodworkers, this does not mean they can do each other’s professions without additional training and growth.
With practice, classroom instructors face everyday obstacles in a unique setting in which they may interact with pupils as much through body language as verbal and written communication. A teacher’s expertise is enhanced in a classroom with years of experience. Good classroom instructors hone their teaching abilities and have an extensive repertoire of approaches in the many scenarios that arise over time. They learn to monitor and analyze the emotions of their students. They can identify pupils who require assistance and respond appropriately and quickly. They see that certain pupils are more awake than others and that some students show indications of stress or illness from time to time. When necessary, they can intervene and offer guidance. In a classroom, however, a single instructor is faced with communicating directly with a diverse group of students who all have various needs and respond in different ways. A single individual can communicate with a large group of people. If students’ motivation is poor, they will have to participate. Teachers can identify a lack of motivation and respond accordingly by changing student behaviours.
Let’s look at some of the strategies you can use to improve your online teaching and make your eLearning course a success for you and your students.
Engage with your learners online
Without your actual presence in the classroom, you must build a virtual presence at the very beginning of the eLearning course. Online teachers need to be engaged and help students right from the start and throughout the course duration to sustain a thriving learning community.
By building your teaching presence, your students will be guaranteed of your visibility and availability. You will also be ushering them into their new learning community – just like you would in any regular classroom.
Use different learning tools for better engagement
These days, we’re lucky to have the ability to construct virtual learning environments that allow us to communicate and participate just as well as if we were in the classroom.
The finest online teachers combine synchronous and asynchronous activities, producing a blend of conventional online learning approaches with newer, more collaborative audio and visual resources. Working with a range of activities makes the topic more fascinating, improving student engagement with the teacher and other learners.
Develop a supportive learning environment
As an online instructor, you have a chance to develop a supportive online community for your learners.
One sure way to do this is via fostering both teacher-to-student involvement and student-to-student connection.
- At the commencement of your online course, get the ball moving with a personal introductory post, and urge members to write their own brief bio or introduction to the community.
- Create an open forum or discussion board where learners may post to request aid and assistance from one other, fostering peer-to-peer support.
- Like traditional study groups, set up small groups for helpful mentorship of fellow learners.
These tactics will encourage learners to work together as an active learning community, which benefits all persons engaged.
We simply cannot overestimate the value of being available to pupils. If you’re teaching an online course, you’ll need to be near your computer to answer questions, provide help, and keep track of the class. You must answer if you are getting work online at a specific time.
Plan to be clearly present and involved in your distant online class for the same length of time each week. Make visible and meaningful participation a priority. Keep up with the marking and respond to communications only within the scheduled hours. If a student sends work, don’t just return the updated attachment; add a note to the work and the email.
Provide ongoing feedback
All successful learning environments, including online contexts, require feedback.
Your comments as an online instructor will contribute to creating an eLearning experience that is educational, interesting, and motivating for the learner. Throughout the eLearning process, you should provide constant feedback, with constructive feedback given as quickly as possible so that students can easily see which behaviours or skills need to be addressed.
Through participatory exercises, you can stimulate group input while promoting peer engagement.