Tuesday, April 24, 2007

Keeping Students Motivated

Each student taking an online course is as unique as the many reasons why online learning is a perfect fit for them. Some students take online courses because they enjoy using technology or they want to take advanced courses that are not offered at their school. Others take online courses because they need to make up missing credits or just don’t thrive in a traditional brick and mortar environment. So how to you keep such a diverse population motivated? Believe it our not, keeping online students motivated is surprisingly similar to keeping students motivated in a traditional setting. We keep students motivated by showing them that we genuinely care about their success.

Although many people will tout “actions speak louder than words” we don’t just stop there we also tell our students upfront that we care about their success and are here to help. How do we do this? By working together with our district partners to make sure that students and their parents are informed about their districts online program and what the district hopes to achieve by offering students an online alternative.

We make sure that students know how to use the tools they have at their disposal and are comfortable in the online learning environment. Our 24/7 support staff ensures that students have adequate support when they encounter problems. Our teachers clearly state what is expected of each student and our platform provides tools so that students can track and monitor their progress. We show students that they are valued by answering questions as quickly as possible. Whether it is a support staff member showing a student how to download a required application or a teacher responding to a rough draft or just letting a student know that they have received a paper, we respond promptly. By using a variety of communication methods, such as instant help, a virtual chalkboard, an internal messaging system, and of course “ma bell” our certified teaching staff provides constructive feedback and take pleasure in watching our students’ thought processes develop as their level of understanding increases. Our ultimate goal is to leave no doubt in the students’ mind that we want to see them succeed and will do all we can to help them meet their academic goals.

How to you keep your students motivated?

Posted by:
Barbara Thornton
Customer Support Manager
Advanced Academics, Inc.


Anonymous said...

It is hard to keep students motivated in the classroom as well. Being an online teacher, how do you handle the "loner" students or those that are not proactive in reaching out for help?

Advanced Academics said...

Thank you for your comment! Actually, in my experience at Advanced Academics I found that a student who wouldn't normally speak up in a traditional class is more inclined to do so in an online environment. There is a certain level of anonymity that students feel they have online. Additionally, being asynchronous allows students to formulate their questions and answers, therefore feeling a little less "on the spot."
Also, with a full staff of teachers, support staff, and teaching assistants, we are constantly reaching out to our students. Hopefully this relays a sense of openness and availability of our staff that students will take advantage of.

Anonymous said...

online teacher, how do you handle the "loner"
we are constantly reaching out to our students.
call them?
ask them?