There are a great many advantages to using a digital learning platform. This type of technology can be a hugely helpful ally when it comes to offering successful educational experiences.
Teachers and tutors worldwide have had their eyes opened to the almost endless opportunities of tapping into an online community, both for themselves and for their students. This is true whether their educational organisation are offering entirely online eLearning courses, or whether they are offering a more traditional face to face course with blended online elements.
If you’re looking for inspiration on how to better take advantage of all the opportunities offered by your digital learning platform and the online community, we’ve shared six ways to effectively use these resources.
#1. Build your own mini online community and encourage students to be part of it
The first step in incorporating the online community into your teaching may be to ensure all your current students are connected to each other online. The learning platform you’re using, whether it is a learning management system (LMS) or a learning content management system (LCMS), will give you the capability to create virtual classrooms and forums. Encouraging students to be active in these virtual spaces outside of usual classroom time will promote outside study, group discussion and co-operative learning. It will also help to ease their confidence into accessing online communities that are not already known to them.
#2. Facilitate spoken online discussions
Spoken conversation is a vital part of any learning experience. It’s particularly key for languages, as the only way to really learn a language is to hear it in action and get involved in the conversation. Most students will not have the luxury of someone to practice with at home. Because of this, finding a way to connect students with practice partners can be an extremely effective way to enhance their learning experience. This is a key way that a learning platform can offer value to students as they can use it to connect with conversational partners from the online community. The bigger the community the better in this sense as there will always be someone to practise speaking and listening skills with.
#3. Provide student led revision activities
One of the most common ways to use the online community offered by a learning platform is to offer student led learning activities. These are tools and activities than can be accessed by individual students whenever they choose and can be competed independently.. Typically these learning activities are straight forward and easy to engage in without needing separate introductions or instructions. They often also respond intelligently to the students’ personal needs, for example by honing in on areas that students appear to require additional help with.
#4. Curate relevant resources from around the web
The internet is a fantastic place for learning about absolutely anything. Unfortunately it can be difficult for students to correctly analyse the many resources that are available and conclude which are going to be the most helpful for them. Teachers and tutors can help with this by curating a collection of beneficial resources and hosting them on a learning platform for their students to access at their leisure.
#5. Schedule virtual group meetings
Independent study is an excellent way to use a comprehensive learning platform such as a learning content management system (LCMS) or learning management system (LMS). However, the online community is often even more helpful when it is used as a group. It can be really beneficial to use a virtual classroom tool to host in-person online meetings, either with the full cohort or students or with smaller more select groups. This can help to keep students on track in between scheduled classroom time and can also encourage students to access the online community space more regularly.
#6. Move assessments online
Assessments are undoubtedly a vital part of the educational process, but facilitating them can eat into valuable class times. Managing assessment in a less traditional way can change this. A high quality learning platform will allow you to build online assessment tools that will complete this vital step while students partake in online quizzes and activities. Moving this educational stage online and out of the physical classroom will give everyone involved the opportunity to make better and more engaging use of class time.
However you choose to use the online educational space provided by your learning platform, doing so creatively can really give your students a boost.
Why not take a look at some of the ways our digital learning platform and online community can benefit language students?
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