How to Develop a Successful Remote Learning Strategy

How do you learn when there’s no one in the room to teach? It’s a question that educators around the world are asking themselves. The answer is simple: You can’t. That said, teaching online is not an easy task. Developing a successful strategy for remote learners takes time and effort but it can be done. This article will share some tips on how to develop a successful remote learning strategy.

  1. Determine Your Goals For Remote Learning

When developing a successful remote learning strategy, it is important to define your goals. The best way to do this is by using SMART objectives- those being Specific, Measurable, Attainable/Achievable, Realistic, and Time-bound. Once these have been set up, they should be communicated with the participants so they know what is expected from them in order to complete their course successfully. 

  1. Evaluate the Needs of Your Participants

This will determine the best way to deliver your course content. You need to take into account what tools they already have access to, as well as what you’d like them to learn throughout the course. For example, if their primary goal is for communication purposes then it would be beneficial to develop several opportunities within the course that allows for dialogue between learners and instructors. Use this step as an opportunity to consider how much support each participant requires- you don’t want everyone asking questions all at once!

  1. Have a Clear Outline of What is Expected From Each Participant 

It is imperative that you have a clear outline of what is expected from each participant before starting the course. Make sure to cover topics such as how long they are expected to study on their own, how often they should be submitting work for review, and if there will be any kind of assessment along the way. When learners know exactly what is required of them, they are more likely to succeed!

  1. Choose a Platform That is Compatible With Both You and Your Participants 

It is important to choose a course platform that will allow your learners and their devices to interact with the course content. The most popular online learning platforms include Moodle, Canvas, Tutor LMS, and Blackboard. Each offers an easy-to-use interface as well as several features such as calendars for organization and lesson plans, discussion boards for participant interaction, and quizzes and tests for assessment. Choose your course provider carefully so you can ensure compatibility between all of the tools you need to use.

  1. Create an Engaging Curriculum That Meets the Needs of All Participants in the Course 

This will depend largely on the subject at hand and the level of instruction required. Whether you’re teaching advanced physics or basic photography, it’s important that all participants develop a thorough understanding of course materials. Creating engaging training materials like videos is easy with the help of pre-made video templates and some free video editors. Additionally, whomever your target audience may be (teachers, students, professionals) they should be able to engage with your curriculum both in and out of class time – whether that means reading up on the latest industry news after hours or watching recorded tutorials during their commute home. 

  1. Plan For Success By Anticipating Common Challenges, Such as Time Zone Differences or Technical Difficulties

Now that you’ve planned the overall structure of your course, it’s time to anticipate common challenges. For example, those teaching courses for those living outside their time zone need to take into account the potential for having participants learn at different times of the day. You can record your training materials with the help of screen recording tools. You also want to prepare your learners for technical difficulties. Whether they are using a low-quality internet connection or an outdated device, it’s important they know what to expect beforehand so they can be successful throughout all stages of the course. 

  1. Encourage Asking Questions and Engagement Throughout the Course

One of the most important aspects of any online learning experience is giving participants an opportunity to ask questions or engage with their instructors. This can include synchronous, real-time chat sessions to discuss course content in real-time (e.g., Google Hangouts or Skype), asynchronous interactions such as forums and/or live webinars (e.g., Podio), or a combination of both (e.g., GoToMeeting). The more opportunities you give your learners to interact with you and each other, the stronger their sense of community will become and that leads to greater success!

  1. Develop an Assessment Plan For Each Module/Topic Within The Course

Assessments help measure the knowledge retention of your participants and give you an opportunity to evaluate which topic needs more clarification. Also, it’s important to remember that most learners prefer multiple types of assessments- this may include written tests as well as observation or portfolio reviews. 

  1. Rinse and Repeat!

Designing a remote learning strategy is an ongoing process that needs to be continually evaluated throughout the life of the course. It’s important to reflect on what has worked well in previous iterations, as well as how you can improve your strategies for future courses. After all, that’s why it’s called “practical” learning! 

Learning how to create a successful remote learning strategy can seem like an intimidating task. But with the right planning, you’ll be able to provide your participants with all of the resources they need for success- no matter where in the world they are!

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