Students love learning, and there’s no shortage of courses offered online across the globe, but having a college degree from an accredited school comes with its own challenges. That’s where the Behrman House online learning center steps in.
After all, where else will a student have the opportunity to not only pick up the skills they need for a job or at college, but to also boost their overall confidence in their future by expanding their network?
We asked Behrman House for some tips on how to add students to your online learning center!
1. Make it User-Friendly
It’s super important that online learning centers are user-friendly. No matter what kind of technology you use — or how much training you have — the chances are good that the experience for a student will be quite rough. That means a few extra buttons to click and contextual menus to find. If they’re able to find their way to the right content easily, they’ll likely be more comfortable. And, they’ll probably stay and complete the course!
2. Connect Them With Experts
A study of online programs in the U.S. and South Korea showed that 75 percent of the online programs included a volunteer component, where experts answered a student’s questions. No matter what kind of expertise you choose, make sure that experts are qualified and therefore effective. When it comes to answering questions, experts are easier and more equipped to navigate the maze than laypeople.
3. Help Them Manage Expectations
Students will have high expectations of online learning. But, they don’t need to rush through things and then give up. In that vein, make sure that all students know their expectations. It’s important that they know what they want to achieve and aren’t taken by surprise by what other students are doing in that class. In a way, it helps a class feel less like a giant test!
4. Be Open-Minded About Simplifying Books
Most students are OK with not reading the whole text at once. There are probably exceptions, though, and your online learning center needs to adjust its plans for the balance of the class. Expectations should vary as students’ need to stay organized. If the class description is a little vague, offer a translation tool. This way, students can read the description and the translation without having to flip through two separate pages, or read out loud in their own language. If students seem to be needing a lot of assistance with their textbooks, highlight their comments and get them to sign up for the live chat to get an earful about their needs and interests.
5. Prepare For What Might Go Well
A lot of online learning programs are designed with students in mind, which can sometimes mean expanding into spaces, creating limited-access areas, or adjusting a course structure based on those needs. While you should absolutely think ahead to these things, don’t abandon all hope on everything going as planned, either.
6. Approach Hard Topics with Care
While the workshop might be happening on the same day or day after, there’s still some unique process that might create some awkward situations. Don’t forget that. There are many methods for dealing with this kind of challenge. For example, ask the professor or a student support coordinator about any techniques the team has used for the occasion, including steps for moving on, interrupting, and who knows?
7. Share Resources
Make sure to get as much content as possible into your class. Whether you post it on Behrman House’s blog or share it on Facebook, the more that students see, the more comfortable they will be with sharing their questions and experiences.
One word of caution: Don’t implement any innovation without involving students, staff, and all concerned at any point. Things are never perfect, and everyone needs to be involved in making sure everything is just right!
You can find more tips about incorporating students here!
This story was originally published by Behrman House . Reprinted with permission from the author.