List of Student and Teacher Expectations for Online Courses

(Originally posted in 2015, I thought this blog was relevant now at the beginning of the semester for all those teaching online this term.)

What you can expect from your Instructor:

  • I will reply to your questions within 24-48 hours except during holidays.
  • I will provide clear and concise instructions and exercises for you to follow.
  • I will return graded assignments within two weeks from the due date.
  • I will monitor discussions to clarify students’ postings, highlight good or interesting comments and ideas, and provide insight.
  • I will provide the necessary components of successful interaction: explanation, demonstration, practice, feedback, and assessment.
  • I will provide a range of practice opportunities–from self-corrected multiple choice items to free form expression on a concept.
  • I will provide meta-cognitive, cognitive, and social strategies for instruction.
  • I know the platform you are using very thoroughly, so that I can anticipate and make good guesses about the origins of any problems you’re likely to have, and some answers for them.

What I expect from my Students:

  • Learn what the minimum technical requirements of the course include. Take the student orientation tutorial for this learning management system before getting started.  Read the information in the Help tab (online manual) to learn how to use a tool.  Seek other training services for basic computer and word processing skills.
  • All your discussion posts will be consequential and full of content! For example, simply responding “me too,” or “thanks,” doesn’t include content.  Use good grammar and spelling when posting online.  Use the spell check feature.
  • Follow the rules of Netiquette. For example, no bullying online.
  • Complete all required tasks in a timely manner. Be proactive with a back-up plan in case you’re unable to access the Internet in your regular place of study.
  • Preplan for testing situations to ensure uninterrupted span of time.  For example, you won’t be able to access the Internet in remote locations like on a cruise.
  • Do not plagiarize the work of others and claim it as your own.  Cite your sources using the style guide required for your field of study (e.g., American Psychological Association’s manual for social science). Make sure you use the latest edition.

Protocol for Resolving Technical Issues:

  • First, make sure it’s not a browser issue (e.g., Google Chrome), and try a different browser to see if this resolves the issue.  If so, then you either need to update your regular browser or clear its history/cookies/cache.
  • If after updating your browser, or other browser do not work, make sure it isn’t your computer.  Try logging in from a different computer to see if you receive the same error message.
  • Read log error messages and record specifics of problems and forward this to the tech support and instructor. Take a screenshot, if possible, to illustrate the exact problem.
  • Remember that your peers can help you, too!
  • Last, after someone (or you) fixes the problem, make sure you refresh/reload the Web page, as the system will remember the exact same page you were looking at the last time you logged in.

Sandra Annette Rogers, PhD

Updated 6/3/17

Collection of My Best e-Learning Blog Posts

How participants can prepare for a webinar & understand how to interact
A Pathway for Participants to Understand How to Prepare & Attend a Webinar

 

I’ve been blogging since 2011.  I noticed I had 61 blogs listed in the category for e-Learning.  Here’s a collection of my best effort to help others understand how to improve online learning and your professional online image as an eLeader.

Face-to-Face to Online Course Development Checklist

From Face-to-Face Teaching to Blended Format

How to Make Your Online Course Accessible

Personalizing Distance Education

Effective Online Communication

Online Cognitive Activities that Engender a Community of Inquiry

 WebQuest for Creating Critical Thinking Job Aids

Scoop.IT! The Critical Reader

Use of SecondLife for Educational Purposes

SecondLife: Advantages and Disadvantages for Education

 Process Map for Participants to Attend a Webinar

 Another Basic Tool for Online Teachers: The World Clock

Personal Branding for the 21st Century Educator

Follow my e-newspaper, The Online Educator, to learn from leaders in the industry.

3 Tips for Educators Transitioning from F2F to Blended Format

 

In my opinion, the blended format offers the best learning situation. It’s like a web-enhanced course on steroids. You’ll get to meet with the students in person, share all types of great resources online, and continue discussions online instead of having the conversation end when the face-to-face class ends. The three most important things I’d tell faculty transitioning from regular face-to-face classes (F2F) to that of a blended format are as follows:
1. Establish a clear schedule that explicitly outlines the activities to be conducted according to your blended format.
2. Revisit each of your F2F lessons and assignments to decide which ones are compatible for the online format and adapt them accordingly.
3. Apply many of the same basic principles for engendering a community of inquiry in your F2F to that of the blended format.

Blended format schedule. It’s imperative to state which activities will happen in the F2f class and asynchronously online; otherwise, students will become confused and miss F2F class meetings other activities. Educators should provide students a paper schedule and also add the important dates to the online course calendar. Additionally, special reminders can be shared via the online course announcements tool. This schedule should also be appended to the course syllabus. I suggest placing the dates of the F2F class meetings in the heading of the syllabus instead of buried within the other information.

Adaptation of lessons. Review all of your lessons with a new lens for the blended format. Make a t-chart of which lessons are suitable for the F2F and online learning environments. Then build a new schedule. It will serve as a nice outline for the course. You may have to modify, add, or remove existing activities and lessons to adequately fit the blended format. For example, I like to conduct a mock and formal debate. In the past, I taught the reading course in a Web-enhanced format. In designing my project for the blended format, I realized that I could conduct the mock debate via the Sakai Meetings tool and keep the formal debate F2F. Lastly, make sure you edit all your existing assignments tied to lessons to reflect the updates.

Community of inquiry. A community of inquiry (COI) exists when you have social presence, cognitive presence, and teacher presence. Some educators believe that the COI can only occur in F2F formats. Actually, when teachers encourage students to share ideas and their work, this provides for social presence online and F2F. Second, try to bring the same great F2F conversations to the online forums for discussion. This requires a lot of forethought before you post your question and related articles. This can engender cognitive presence if it provides challenging questions and promotes student-student interactions. Lastly, teachers need to be actively engaged in the discussions online in the same way that they lead, moderated, or guided the F2F ones. This provides teacher presence. Just as you would give timely feedback on assignments as a F2F best practice, this also adds teacher presence. In summary, the three main things to keep in mind for transitioning content from a F2F course to a blended format is to be hyper-vigilant of the lesson scheduling, adaptation of activities, and maintenance of the COI.

Please provide feedback on my critical reading course

Dear Teachers,

This summer, I’ll be teaching a group of pre-med students how to speed read and improve their comprehension. The students consist of native English speakers who are part of a summer enhancement program called DREAM. We’ll spend 4 hours a week on the subject, so I have time to integrate technology. I created a wiki with the online content since we don’t have a textbook. We’ll be using the computerized program MyReadingLab.com for covering topics such as reading rate and critical thinking. Here’s a link to the wiki: http://usadream.pbworks.com/w/page/39147717/FrontPage

I’m requiring two projects, one group and one individual. The group project will post to the wiki. The students’ individual project is to create electronic flashcard decks on Dictionary.com. Here’s a sample deck I created: http://flashcards.dictionary.com/deckprofile/view/96394/medical-vocabulary-project-flashcards. Additionally, I made a demonstration video on Camtasia Relay:http://camtasia.usouthal.edu/Camtasia/J00052636/Vocabulary_Project_on_Dictionary.com_-_Flash_(Original_Size)_-_20110527_05.57.20PM.html

I’d love to hear your feedback. I’ve set my personal deadline as June 1st. Send me a tweet or email with your comments, or leave a message below.

Thanks in advance for your feedback!

Sandra Rogers

Use Voki to bring someone else’s voice to your grammar lesson

In preparation for an advanced ESL grammar lesson, I wanted to integrate technology in a simple way. Usually the teacher is the one giving the examples. I had used Voki.com before to give a one-liner to visitors to my wiki. It dawned on me that I could use several Vokis to deliver one-liner grammar examples. I believe if you want the Vokis to say a speech, you have to pay for an upgrade. Otherwise, the service is free.

The lesson was on unreal conditionals, the “if I were president, I would…” I decided to make each Voki speak a different example, including some likely conditional statements. Additionally, I found that you can have a Voki speak with different English regional dialects—American, British, Australian, Scottish, et cetera. Since students often study abroad, I think they should learn a variety of English dialects.

Here’s the link to my grammar lesson with the Vokis on my personal learning environment (PLN):
http://mypersonallearningenvironment.pbworks.com/w/page/36864678/Sample-Grammar-Lesson

To create your own Voki, visit their Web site: http://www.voki.com/

Sandra Rogers

We created a Wiki for our TESOL Intersection Presentation

How can 7 people plan a presentation for a TESOL Intersection?  By using Google Docs, wikis, emails, and Skype.  If you can’t make it to our TESOL 2011 presentation, you can visit our wiki and see all the details.  This intersection is between the Computer-assisted Language Learning (CALL-IS) and Elementary Education Interest Sections.  Additionally, you can hear the webcast recording that will be hosted on the CALL-IS wiki.  See info about my schedule at TESOL in a previous blog.

http://esoltechprep.pbworks.com/w/page/36440308/FrontPage

Web cast recording of this session:
https://sas.elluminate.com/site/external/jwsdetect/playback.jnlp?psid=2011-03-18.0719.M.7AE801FFB697DA460D4BF25AA8C21B.vcr&sid=75

I’d love to answer questions or discuss your feedback.

Sandra Rogers

Electronic Flashcard Decks and Crossword Puzzles

Dear Teachers,

A simple and free alternative to creating paper and pen vocabulary logs are electronic flashcards on Dictionary.com.  However, to meet the needs of all learners, I suggest that you continue to provide the more traditional handwritten or type written logs for the visual students sine the flashcard decks are more suited for the auditory and/or kinetic learners. In fact, students could upload their typed vocabulary logs documents to review them online on Scribed.com.

For my online college reading class this semester, I provided this alternative and asked students to send me the link upon completion, as the flashcard decks on Dictionary.com are viewable by the public.  After students create a quick profile and login to create a deck, the program helps students find the definitions to the words to form their decks. Then it provides repeated opportunities for study and testing. Moreover, the program will send the students an email reminder to complete their study. For example, to complete mastery of the vocabulary list, you must test your knowledge at least 10 times over an extended period.

View my screen cast on how to create electronic flashcard decks on Dictionary.com: http://camtasia.usouthal.edu/Camtasia/J00052636/Vocabulary_Project_on_Dictionary.com_-_Flash_%28Original_Size%29_-_20110527_05.57.20PM.html

Here are the links to the four decks that I created from the Twilight Saga:

http://flashcards.dictionary.com/deckprofile/view/50903/twilight-saga-twilight/

http://flashcards.dictionary.com/deckprofile/view/50910/twilight-saga-new-moon/

http://flashcards.dictionary.com/deckprofile/view/50880/twilight-saga-eclipse/

http://flashcards.dictionary.com/deckprofile/view/50881/twilight-saga-breaking-dawn/

Another use of this resource is to download the Dictionary.com application (app) to your smartphone (BlackBerry, iPhone, Android, etc.).  Like most everybody, I’m too lazy to look up unknown words, so I use the app.  Now I keep the phone at my bedside when I’m reading to conduct easy word searches and to hear the pronunciations.  Additionally, I shared the app idea with my college students, and they really liked not having to lug their paperback dictionaries around.

Lastly, Dictionary.com provides a widget that you can add to your Web site by embedding HTML code. The widget provides the word-of-the-day. I posted it on the course announcement page of my eCollege shell, so that students will see it when they first login. Yesterday’s word-of-the-day was “inkhorn”. I relish this word because it reminds me of someone who loves to use high level academic words even in his emails! Today’s word is “bailiwick,” which I thought was apropos for my eportfolio that I’m building on this blog!

P.S. Dictionary.com now creates computer-generated crossword puzzles from you e-flashcard decks!

P.S.S. Are Flashcards an Effective Learning Tool? http://voxy.com/blog/2011/05/are-flashcards-an-effective-learning-tool-infographic/

Your Blogger,

Sandra Annette Rogers