Put a Tripwire in An Online Assignment (or How I Got a Free Book)

Earlier this year I got a free advanced copy of Decisive from Chip and Dan Heath before it was released to the public.  I got  it because of a tripwire. I'll explain. So, here's how it happened. I signed up for the Heath brothers' online … [Continue reading]

Online Teaching Tip #21 – Engage More

Your online students presume that you are unavailable. That may sound harsh, but it's one of the realities of teaching in the online context. What follows that belief is that your students will leave you alone. There are always the exceptions, the … [Continue reading]

Online Teaching Tip #20 – When You Feel Overwhelmed

Overwhelm comes with the territory of the teacher. But the online classroom is especially fragmenting. I think this is due to the fact that we work with so many intangibles. Instead of a stack of papers, we have a set of online submissions. Instead … [Continue reading]

Online Teaching Tip #19 – Move the Ball Forward

Move the Ball Forward Motivation wanes in the the middle of the semester.  Our students are feeling the demands of school, and our contact with them online starts to feel more like business than learning. And this dynamic is a lot more difficult to … [Continue reading]

Online Teaching Tip #18 – Create an FAQ

FAQ Saves the Day! I received a couple emails  from students who didn't completely understand a research panel project I had designed for an online course. With the due date quickly approaching, they were already deep into the work on the their … [Continue reading]

Online Teaching Tip #17 – Surprise Your Students by Noticing

Surprise Your Students by Noticing Imagine that you checked your inbox today to find an unexpected email. It's from a friend whom you had a conversation with last week and they wrote, "Insert your name, I was just thinking about our conversation … [Continue reading]

Online Teaching Tip #16 – Your Core Question for Online Discussions

The One Question that Drives How You Facilitate Online Discussion Here's the question: How can I move this student (or group of students) to the next level? You're probably thinking, "Aaron, where are you getting these 'levels'." I'm getting them … [Continue reading]

Online Teaching Tip #15 – Your Role as Discussion Facilitator

Your Role as Online Discussion Facilitator It can be difficult to feel out your role in online discussions. In my years of teaching online, I've come to see that the discussions don't need managed, but they do need our leadership. Here are three … [Continue reading]

Online Teaching Tip #14 – Some Criteria for Online Discussions

Some Criteria For Online Discussions In Online Teaching Tip #13, I explained how using the wrong grading criteria for online discussions can kill student interaction. Now I'd like to answer the question, "What criteria should I use when grading my … [Continue reading]

Online Teaching Tip #13 – Discussions are Not Essays

Online Discussions are Not Essays This can be a hard one. Here's why. As teachers, we are used to grading text-based documents a certain way. And those documents, research papers, essays, and the like, need to follow a very clear line of thought. … [Continue reading]