The world is becoming more dynamic as people adapt to the times we live in. Online learning offers the opportunity for people to gain the desired skills and qualifications from any location in the world and is one of the fastest-growing industries in the world. however, despite the wide interest in online learning, research shows that less than 20% of those who enroll for the online courses end up earning a certificate for those courses. As new protocols of restriction of movements become the new norm in cities all over the world, it has become increasingly necessary to ensure that the outcomes of completion of courses are improved as much as possible.
1. Be Deliberate in the Choice of a Course: Many individuals and organizations enroll for courses because they have a passing interest in the course topic or the cost of enrollment seems like a good deal. Organizations should engage with their employees on the appropriate courses for them and prepare those employees for the learning expected of them. It is possible within this interaction to have new ideas about the skills needed by the employees and make slight changes to the choice of the courses chosen. A high degree of commitment and dedication is needed for a positive outcome therefore only courses relevant to the career of employees and aligned with their interest should be enrolled. Establish the goals for the course carefully and then go for it.
2. Choose a paid course: A payment is a token of your commitment to the course you have chosen to enroll in. You are more likely to complete a course and earn a certificate when you have invested some finances into the course as the prospect of losing the money committed into the course will help you stay focused on achieving completion and a positive outcome. Additionally, some courses or online institutions open access to a wide array of resources that may prove to be useful for the students even beyond the scope of the course they have enrolled in.
3. Prepared mindsets: A major reason many people do not have positive outcomes in their online courses is that they do have not prepared their mindsets to undertake the course. When taking an online course, organizations should release employees to take the period off in a quiet place so they can focus completely on the study. Individuals should also prepare to participate fully by setting aside time in their schedule and setting up their learning environment for the lesson to put their minds in the frame for professionalism and learning.
4. Lessons with Video are easier to complete: Most people are visual learners. While they may have some degree of difficulty following in an online class with text only, they would be able to sustain attention and concentration for much longer when there are visual aids such as videos in the classroom. One of the factors to consider while choosing an online course is to check if there are video options/alternatives available with the same curriculum. It is okay if there aren’t but it is still beneficial to enroll for the most robust of the courses available for the intended skill or qualification as regular communication helps in collecting as many notes including feedback and details as possible. It also serves as a go-to resource for the students after the course has been completed.
5. Allow students to engage and interact with one another: Another factor in online learning that helps with improved outcomes is if the students in the course are able to engage with one another. If the course is asynchronous (i.e Students have the choice of learning at their own pace), it may be good to have them come together in meetings regularly to discuss their progress and review each others’ work. This feedback system helps to develop more interest in the course as well as a need for everyone to try to keep up. Some courses even have the options of grouping learners in small cohorts and this is recorded to have resulted in improved outcomes, both in completion of the courses and the pass rate.
6. Regular assignments and assessments: An online course with regular assessments helps to put the students on their toes and give more dedication to the course as they would almost certainly refer to the course before each assessment. It also helps if the assignments are relevant to the learners and useful for their professional careers. The assessments should be done in a result-oriented approach i.e an approach that analyses the students’ results, seeks to understand their areas of weakness, and provides a step by step process in helping them overcome those weaknesses. These assessments also provide an avenue for students/learners to collaborate for solutions and exchange ideas with one another.
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