As of earlier this month, millions of students attending thousands of schools, colleges, and universities worldwide have seen their studies suddenly interrupted and over 200 educational institutions are either postponing or cancelling in-person activities and classes as coronavirus enters pandemic territory. At the moment, moving everything online is the best option to continue student learning. However, it is not as easy as it seems.
Apart from the difficult and practical challenges of transitioning from brick-and-mortar activities to online ones – student software and hardware accessibility, student access to computers and broadband, technical setups – ensuring that students still have the best possible education is one of the biggest obstacles for most institutions.
Improving Online Learning Experience
Based on studies conducted for over decades on what works and what doesn’t and why choose online learning experience for students, there are some tips and advice for institutions that are looking to get all students online as seamlessly and quickly as possible, as well as offer targeted, meaningful classes and lessons that don’t stymie student engagement or achievement. However, keep in mind that since there are major planning and resource constraints, these suggestions will not be feasible to implement for all schools, colleges, and universities. Nonetheless, there is a great value in the consideration of these tips as institutions continue iterating on their online learning practices.
- Don’t Try to Replicate Classroom Instruction Online
Students must participate and engage in active learning for online learning to be truly effective. Simply taking subpar brick-and-mortar experiences and transitioning them online is not enough. In fact, it can have negative effects. The best way to do this is to leverage technology via the traditional lecture model and basically transform the learning experience into one that all students are familiar with. This will surely increase the likelihood of success. Many institutions, including tuition centers like JC ECONOMICS TUITION in Singapore have already implemented this with great success.
Keeping students engaged is one of the primary hurdles when it comes to online learning experience. To make sure that students stay engaged at home, there needs to be at least some control over learning from tutors to students. However, that does not mean that you need to simply replicate the entire tuition or college day schedule with video conferencing or other online tools. Instead, variety of online materials, course options, and good adaptive learning technologies should be used to offer families and students some control over how they structure their learning time.
2. Help Students Own Their Learning
With the transition to online learning, good tutoring becomes more about staying up-to-date with students to guide them on self-directed learning activities and offering individual interventions as opposed to covering the course via video lectures. Fortunately, keeping track of student’s progress is possible as there are many digital tools available that can offer everyday data on the activity and progress of each and every student. This also allows students and teachers to have focused discussions on the how and why of learning.
The best online learning experience helps students describe standards and goals, as well as have access to their own learning data. Students use technology as a tool that can help them effectively achieve their goals. Whether it is economics tuition online or online mathematics courses, students become engaged with digital content and they become comfortable asking their teachers as well as fellow students for support.
3. Facilitate Connection, Not Isolation
It’s very important to implement online learning correctly. This is because poor implementation of digital learning can make the experience isolating for students due to limited opportunities to communicate and interact with classmates or the outside world. Fortunately, beyond the education systems, communication technologies have improved greatly that allow you to connect across space and time.
Communication tools impact the students’ access to connections and networks toward improving their likelihood of getting by and getting ahead in their studies. Collection of such tools include everything from those that facilitate one-off, brief online connections with teachers/tutors who could provide guidance to students, to those that broker new mentoring relationships that help students into or through college. Colleges, universities, and tuition centers simply need to take advantage of those tools to facilitate connection and ensure that their students don’t feel isolated.
Though unpredictable and scary, this time to depending on online learning to deliver great educational experiences for students during the COVID-19 pandemic could be an excellent learning opportunity for educational institutions to test what works best for learning that is student-oriented as well as develop best practices around personalized learning, blended learning, and online learning. The above-mentioned tips will surely help improve the overall online learning experience for students. But as mentioned before, the suggestions may not be feasible to implement for all institutions and some may need to devise their own strategies to fully take advantage of the online learning environment.