It may seem that learning online should be (or could be) as effective as traditional classroom learning. In almost every online class, resources and materials are provided for the students, there are asynchronous (and occasionally synchronous) discussions, and then assessments are given to determine if progress has been made with meeting the required learning objectives. Students aren't required to sit through a lecture and instead they can study at their own convenience. But important elements are missing in a virtual classroom, such as face to face interactions that provide visual and verbal cues, and that makes the distance factor a significant challenge.
Developing conditions in an online classroom that are conducive to learning is challenging enough for instructors but then add to that the need to help students stay motivated and interested in the class, and their work is becomes even more time consuming and difficult to manage. There is a belief among some educators that it is not possible to help students that you cannot see, especially with a quality such as motivation that cannot be visually assessed in a virtual environment. But a student's level of motivation will influence all aspects of their involvement, from their engagement in the
The retention rate for online schools is low and there are many reasons why students discontinue their degree program, from the cost per credit hour to school policies and the quality of the courses offered. Instructors have little control over many of those factors but what they can help with is the classroom environment that they are responsible for maintaining. With every class students are at risk for failure because of the nature of a virtual environment and interactions with others. New students have the greatest risk and the most challenging learning curve. When students take their fir
When students are assigned to an online class there is a general expectation that they will perform in a fairly uniform manner, which means they are expected to follow the rules, adhere to the school policies, and complete what is expected of them within the timeframe established. As instructors know, not all students are fully prepared to engage in the class or have all of the skills necessary to perform their best. There will likely be students, especially new or newer students, who will need to adapt in some manner and make changes of some kind. They may not even recognize that there are c
It is likely that most everyone wants to reach the end of their work day with a sense of accomplishment, whether it is a matter of just getting through the day or doing something meaningful as a result of their job – with many variations in between. The disposition someone develops about their job can have a direct impact on the amount of effort that is put into the required tasks, and it is easy to allow the circumstances at work to determine or influence the attitude held. While perfect working conditions certainly make it easier to feel good about completing what is expected, the dec
Whether you love your job and are building a career, or you simply tolerate it to pay the bills, it can consume a significant amount of your time each week. Most people have some type of fixed schedule or number of hours they are required to work each week and the actual hours spent on the job may vary based upon their workload. The requirements of a job, along with performance expectations, may require working beyond the regular workday – even if those tasks and expectations are unrealistic.There are some people who will gladly put in any amount of extra time that is needed or expected
When someone states they have been successful there is usually something specific that they can point to, whether it is a new job, advancement with a current employer, a merit pay raise, special recognition, or something else that signifies an obvious achievement for their career. However, for some people they may believe that success rarely happens for them no matter how hard they work or how much effort they put into their job. Success is usually defined by events or occurrences and that is a reason why it becomes a source of frustration for many people, and why this also creates a negative
Do you remember when you began your present (or most recent) job? Starting of a new job is a time when enthusiasm, energy, and a feeling of professional fulfillment is at its strongest – influenced by the reason why the job offer was accepted. Over time the level of enthusiasm and feeling of satisfaction may fluctuate as the reality of the job tasks become clear, and this can influence a person’s performance in a positive or negative manner depending upon the circumstances experienced. The most common factors that can have an impact on how a person performs on the job may include the actual wo
Getting a good job can be a lot of work and turning it into a long-term career can be even more challenging. Most people believe that making progress in a career requires hard work, dedication, commitment, the development of relevant skills, and perhaps a bit of good luck. While there are many reasons why a person can ultimately succeed or fail in their job there is another factor that can have a significant influence on performance and ultimately the potential realized, and that is the beliefs that a person holds about their abilities and capabilities. If a belief becomes negative and is mai
The time when job seekers relied solely on the newspaper for job ads has passed and now jobs are often found through online sources such as job boards. The obvious benefit is the ability to find jobs on any given day or time of the week, along with information about potential employers. What job seekers must always keep in mind is that potential employers can also learn about them with a quick search using any search engine. What can be found is a digital footprint and that is what needs to be monitored on a regular basis. It is possible to sabotage your career potential if you don't monitor
Online classes can be mechanical in nature and feel distant for students, which typically results in low student engagement and retention in the class, or it can be an environment that stimulates an interest in learning and promotes meaningful interactions. Who has the greatest influence when it comes to the type of class environment that is experienced, the students or their instructor? It is the instructor who establishes the classroom conditions and students in turn respond or react to what they perceive as they are involved in the class, along with what they actually experience as they in
When you think about the word mindfulness you may not automatically associate it with learning and higher education. Most educators want to focus their attention on the subject matter being taught and the development of skills that are needed to ensure academic success, such as writing and reading skills. Mindfulness is also associated with spirituality and guided meditation, which again may not seem like a natural fit for the learning process. But mindfulness has a much broader definition and potential use, and it is utilized in both organizations and schools. The one exception is distance l
Online instructors know that one of the important factors for determining their performance, and possibly future course offerings, are the results of the end-of-course evaluations that are completed by students. The focus of those evaluations, whether intentionally stated or not, involves how satisfied the students were with the course, materials, instructor, and other similar criteria. Instructors also know that the response rate for these surveys is typically a small percentage of the class and more importantly, it is often an emotional reaction that usually dictates a majority of student r
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