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Taking Online Course Tips: Get To Know The Instructor

Without a doubt, online learning has gained popularity for very good reasons. Offering a lot of advantages to students and teachers alike, it is not surprising that more and more people are choosing to enroll in online courses. With so many online colleges and courses to choose from, you want to make sure that you sign up for an online class that will be worth investing your time and money in.

Researching about the credentials of the online instructors are a good way to assess whether their course is worth taking. If you have a chance to ask them questions, the better. Here are a few things you would need to know about the experience and online teaching practice of an instructor before you sign up for their course:

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Proficiency with Software Programs

Bob Barrett, an online instructor at the American Public University System and teacher at Franklin University, says that it is very important for online instructors to be adept with various software systems, including the latest versions of Windows and Microsoft Office.

Response Time to Questions from Students

Unlike traditional schools, online classes are not confined to specific days and hours, so it is vital for online instructors to be checking their emails for any questions being sent to them by their students. Susan Wegmann, an assistant professor at the University of Central Florida and awardee of the 2009 Sloan-C Excellence in Online Teaching Award, shares that she makes it a point to respond to her online students within 24 hours on weekdays and within 48 hours on weekends.

Use of New Technologies

It is ideal for online educators to explore and incorporate new, interactive technologies if they want to create effective online courses that will keep their students engaged. Barrett says that it is a good practice for online instructors to participate in online learning training forums and conferences to keep up to date with new technologies.

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Flexibility with Adult Learners

The challenge for most adult learners is being able to balance their time for their work, family, and education. There are online learners who are members of the military or are persons with disabilities. These types of students will be needing some schedule flexibility every once in a while due to their responsibilities and specific needs.

Setting Clear Expectations and Instructions

Unlike traditional face-to-face classroom lectures, where both the teacher and his or her students are present at the same time and are able to make clarifications when necessary, online learning relies on clear and specific instructions from instructors so the learners are able to deliver exactly what is expected of them in the course. Online educators are also supposed to provide a schedule of the course aside from detailed instructions.

By doing your research on online instructors before enrolling for their course, you are able to learn which ones are indeed effective in their teaching profession and are assured that the online course you choose to sign up for will give you a positive online learning experience.
Michelle Rubio has been writing for SMEs across the United States, Canada, Australia and the UK for the last five years. She is a highly-experienced blogger and SEO copywriter, writing business blogs for various industries such as marketing, law, health and wellness, beauty, and education, particularly on creating online courses such as those offered by CourseMinded.com. 
Taking Online Course Tips: Get To Know The Instructor Reviewed by Brandon on Saturday, November 28, 2015 Rating: 5

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