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Top 5 Tips for Running Successful Online Courses

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As an instructor, you want to create successful online courses for your students.

But what does that look like? It depends on the type of courses you’re teaching and who your student base is, but some universal best practices will help make sure every student enjoys their time in your class. Here are our top tips for running successful online courses:

1. Be consistent in your communication

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You need to be organized and consistent with your communication. One of the best ways to keep your students engaged is by keeping them in the loop about everything that’s going on from your end. You can do this through email, webinars, live chats, or social media posts.
Don’t be afraid to use more than one communication channel—the more available channels, the better!

2. Hone in on one topic, and don’t overwhelm students with too much information

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When creating an online course, it’s important to create a clear learning path for students. Remember to focus on one topic at a time and not overwhelm them with too much information. You want them to be able to retain the information you are trying to teach them, so make sure that you’re not introducing too many new concepts in each lesson. If you feel like more information could be taught about this topic, then build another video or write another blog post about it!

3. Create a clear learning path for your students

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The first step to creating a learning path is to start with your course outline. This will be your guidepost as you plan out the content and structure of your course. The second step is to use a learning management system (LMS) that allows you to easily organize and manage the flow of information in your course. A great LMS should allow instructors to create sections, assign readings and assignments, and mark work as complete or incomplete from within one central location.

Platforms like Wise allow you to create a learner’s journey with sections and other properties that give your learners a higher chance of success.

4. Make the course worth their time

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You want to make sure you are offering something of value to your students. If it’s too difficult, they will not stay with you. If it’s too easy, they will not feel challenged or engaged in the material and won’t stay with you either.

5. Focus on creating weekly “units” of 2-3 lessons each

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Creating a plan for each unit is important, as it helps you to focus on one topic at a time. This prevents your course from feeling overwhelming or disjointed and keeps the content organized in a way that makes sense to students. If you’re not sure where to start with this process, here is a simple formula:
Focus on creating weekly “units” of 2-3 lessons each (usually 4-5 weeks), offering a good mix of videos and resources that include quizzes or assessments and the main course materials.
Make sure each unit has its theme and direction: What will students gain from this section? How will they be able to apply what they learn here?
Make sure each unit has clear learning objectives, so students know exactly what they need to get out of it. With clear objectives and proper methodologies that you build into your successful online courses, your learners will have a better time while learning.

By following these five tips, you can create a clear, consistent, and engaging course for your students. As we mentioned, the key is to focus on quality over quantity—a few great lessons will be much more effective than many mediocre ones!



A lifelong writer and communicator, Uttiya writes about core education products that fascinate her. She like following pedagogy and recent research on online education

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