Humanising Online Course Design

Welcoming and Guiding

When we design an online course, we can think of it as a house. We are the host, and our students are the guest. A good host should obviously take care of their guests throughout the visit. You might want to ask the following questions:

  • is the overall look appealing? 
  • is it accessible to all kinds of learners?
  • is the door accessible? Are there any windows?
  • do the guests know where to find the bathroom, kitchen, and guest bedroom?
  • do they feel welcomed and accommodated?
  • do they feel the ‘home’ atmosphere?

Overall, do they feel like the house they visit like their second home?

Following are what you can do to facilitate the welcoming and guiding principles:

Welcoming and guiding principles

It is recommended that you provide them with a pre-course tutorial/ orientation at least a week before the course starts, telling them about the tool that you use (e.g., LMS Canvas) and how to operate it. This is especially important when your students are not familiar with the tool. You can do it either synchronously via Zoom or with a recorded video outlining the tool.

Please provide a short welcome message, either in text or video, on your course homepage, welcoming them and telling them that you are excited to meet them. Don’t forget to provide an orientation module outlining everything about the course and you as the teacher and providing a space for them to get to know each other. 

Last, as it is an online course, please provide a tech support module so your students know where to go when something is wrong with their account or any other tech concerns. We cannot always assume that our students are all tech-savvy.

Next is Stimulating and Enriching. Click the image below!

Stimulating and enriching button

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