Recovering Student Engagement at Midterm

March 6, 2023

Is your class feeling sluggish at mid-semester? Try some of these strategies to increase connections for learners.

Strategies to Re-engage Students

Reaching the middle of the term is a significant milestone for your learners, and it can be tinged with various emotions of stress, relief, anxiety, and more. This can lead to student disengagement as the novelty of your course gives way to the repetitious grind required of all of their courses.

How do we recover learner engagement to help them master course content?

Anna Conway, Ed.D., professor and faculty developer at Des Moines Area Community College, offers several strategies to consider.

First, our goal should be to renew a sense of connection. This is best done through low-stakes reflection exercises. Invite your learners to participate in a general feedback discussion board, take an anonymous survey, or submit a reflection on how they are doing and where they are regarding the course. Avoid adding pressure to this by making it voluntary with no points attached. Offer this as an opportunity for them to share without judgment or evaluation. Try using an informal method of inviting students to participate by posting a Kaltura video of yourself in a course announcement. Keep it short, inviting, and informal!

Second, as the pressure of midterms dies down, revitalize the learning experience by switching an instructional piece of course content into an active learning activity. Identify a lecture topic that could be turned into an active learning experience. Instead of delivering that content via a recorded lecture as their first encounter with the topic, provide another opportunity for engagement first. Try any of the following activities:

  • Case studies about the topic where they practice asking guided questions through an applied lens.
  • Small group resource selection where they find academic sources on the topic and explain what they learned about it.
  • Brief reflections about what they believe the topic is and how it might fit with the course so far. After you provide the lecture material, allow them to reflect on the differences between their expectations and what was covered.

Upcoming Events

Quality Matters for Summer Accelerate

Clemson Online is proud to announce new opportunities for instructors to gain experience in online course creation, teaching with Canvas, and the Quality Matters course review process. They start March 10 and include:

  • Online Course Bootcamp
  • Improving Your Online Course (IYOC)
  • QM Essentials Review
  • COFFEE: House Blend

Please see the full descriptions and registration links at our Quality Matters for Summer Accelerate website.

For applicable participants, these trainings can be listed on annual reviews in the Faculty Success system. Check with your department for specific details. If you have any questions about these training opportunities or any aspect of Quality Matters at Clemson, please email Lori Kinley.

Quick Hits – Kaltura Intermediate

Thursday, March 9

Looking to make quizzes more interactive for your students? Join this session to learn how to create a Kaltura quiz and connect it to your grade book in Canvas. We will also cover using the Kaltura Dropbox to allow students to create video submissions for assignments.

  • Facilitated by Gray Jackson, Learning Technology Specialist
  • Time: 3:30 PM – 4:00 PM
  • Location: Virtual

Register for Quick Hits: Kaltura Intermediate on March 9th .

Clemson Online Spring 2023 Events Calendar

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Review our Spring 2023 Events Calendar to see what Online Instruction Development opportunities await!

We have a robust Spring semester lineup of topics and live training formats to support your use of Canvas and other e-learning tools. Topics cover demonstrations of using Kaltura, presentations on inclusive practices for online education, and workshops to get your Canvas site ready to teach!

All of our live training is recorded. Registrants will automatically receive a link to that day’s video after it has been processed.

Contact James Butler with any questions about these sessions.

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