1 Design of online education

Some time ago, we suddenly had to switch from regular education to education online. We learned to work with Teams, record lectures, present assignments online etcetera. These skills have proved useful, but in addition, we must also be able to start a block online as well. Colleagues may very well ask questions such as: “How can I get to know my new online students as well as if we were in a classroom? “How can I keep their attention while teaching online?”, and “How can I have my students practice their skills effectively?” With the help of examples, 'tips and tricks' and references to theory, we will answer as many of your questions as possible in this chapter. Should you still have questions, or would like to make suggestions or comments, please contact the helpdesk.

Scroll down for additional Information.

Online education and the roles of the lecturer and the student

Lecturers want to facilitate and guide the student’s learning process as well as they possibly can. Whether they are online or not. Guidance is achieved through contact, but also by providing structure and clear instructions, more than you would normally. Online education requires a different approach from the lecturer with respect to lesson preparation. Among other things because the attention span is shorter online as opposed to a regular teaching situation. Another issue is that students may not know the tools which requires extra explanation during the lesson. You therefore must structure the preparatory assignments, the lesson itself, and the conclusion differently.

Online learning also requires a different approach from the student than regular education. Developing an active learning attitude (new, independent, online) requires some attention from both the student and lecturer. You will have to put in more effort to engage all your students.

The technical steps to take when preparing an online lesson are different than preparing regular, direct teaching. The four examples of lesson preparation the content-related, technical, pedagogical, and didactic concerns converge.

Not all tools listed are supported by the Rotterdam University of Applied Sciences (RUAS). The overview below lists the tools that RUAS has made available and the other tools that the applications resemble.

Online education and the role of the Study Career Coach

This sudden switch to online studying requires new social, digital & mental skills of students. How can you then best coach your students? Study career coaching is organised differently within the Rotterdam University of Applied Sciences. Sometimes (all) specialist lecturers are Study Career Coaches as well, sometimes there are dedicated coaches, or Study Career Coaches and Professional Identity coaches have been integrated. In any case, make sure that the specialist lecturers and Study Career Coaches collaborate. The well-being of the student is also a responsibility of the specialist lecturers. With a questionnaire, you can get students to think about how to approach online studying. The questionnaire 'online Study Career Coaching' contains six topics that influence online study. You will find two examples of how you can use the questionnaire, for example in Forms.

The two lessons plans are good examples of how to you can stimulate engagement during online lessons. The document ‘Global Marketing & Sales and student engagement’ includes five inspiring ideas that you can apply to Study Career Coaching lessons or during project groups.

Options to help redesign your education for online use

When you adjust your education to the online situation, you will have to make some choices. The following tools can help:

  1. The ‘EHBDo’ can help you analyse your education allowing you to make choices about desired adjustments to face-to-face time, structure, and instruction.
  2. The instructional films 1 & 2 are inspirational in adjusting the design of your course.
  3. The Overview tools & alternatives and the EHBDo can help you make choices about (online) work forms for the developmental phase of your education.
  4. The overview Increase Engagement provides starting points for clear stdent contact both in regular and Study Career Coaching lessons.

The other chapters of this magazine include manuals of possible tools for the different forms of education. The correct use of the various tools is a task in its own right. Please read below for Basic tips:

Useful tips & tricks

First decide on the type of course assessment, and then adjust your lessons accordingly.

  1. It is important to facilitate the different types of face-to-face time. Not just (large) lessons with online lectures, but also consultations, work groups and collaborative assignments for students.
  2. Students need time to get to know (new) tools as well. Put in time and effort to achieve this.
  3. Make sure there is variety in forms of work and assignments.
  4. At the beginning and end of the lesson, use collaborative assignments. In which case you will not be the only person to notice students who have left.
  5. Make assignments different as far as level, content, or working method. So that students can complete an assignment that best fits their current work situation at that time.
  6. Make sure that every lesson has a clear ending. Be aware of what you expect students to do after the meeting.
  7. View these practical tips and tricks.

Additional Information

Do you want more information about the redesign of a course and online teaching? View the webinar on this subject by Irene van der Spoel and WOLT (Technique of Education Approach) of 9 April 2020.

Material of Irene van der Spoel’s webinar is available via Todays Teaching Tools. It has useful additional information about how to teach online, in Dutch only.

Tony Bates does not just go into details about producing quality lesson in “the 10 fundamentals of teaching online for faculty and instructors.”, but he also delves into possible reservations colleagues may have about online or blended education.

Are you considering more than redesigning your lesson? For example, do you want to work on redesigning your entire course or even, now that you have acquired a taste for it, your entire curriculum? Take a look at www.wolt-addie.nl. Here other colleagues explain how they have tackled innovation of education with the help of these steps: Analyse, Design, Develop, Implement, and Evaluation. You can also use Gilly Salmon's Carpe Diem methode method which has been developed to quickly create a coherent curriculum with a diverse team, based on blended education.

Are you interested in the changing synergy between lecturer and student? Please read the English-language report: Sage on the Stage’ to ‘Guide on the Side’: A good start’.

Should you want to read more about inclusive pedagogy and didactics, please read the Newsletter ‘All Inclusive: themanummer: online inclusieve pedagogiek en didactiek’.

Other more extensive sources are Tuitt, F.: Realizing a More Inclusive Pedagogy.