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World Distance Learning Day: Benefits to Online Learning

August 29, 2022

How can online learning be a benefit to our on-ground students? Read on to learn how online education can benefit our Clemson Tigers. 

If you consider the typical online student, you may have an image of them as a working professional who is looking to advance their career and balance their work and home life. While online education is an advantage for these types of students, it is also an advantage for learners at a traditional four-year university. At the start of a fresh Fall semester, it is exhilarating to think of the possibilities for growth. Much of the joy of collegial education is the experience of growing and learning in a caring community. Instructors care for the well-rounded growth of all students here at Clemson and so we suggest that online learning experiences can be a part of that growth.

Benefits

Unlocking Learning Skills:

Self-efficacy

Online teaching and learning are unique from face to face versions in a variety of ways. One key distinction is the role the learner must play in developing their motivation. Successful online learning requires students to develop their capacity for handling the requirements of schedule management, consistent participation, and obtaining appropriate assistance for technical issues. They must be motivated students to complete assignments and to inquire when they are struggling with the content.

Mastery of Technology

Online learning necessitates embracing online technology such as Zoom, Canvas, video editing tools, collaboration tools, and more! These tools are now long-established means of not only learning, but of contemporary working. As our students prepare for either further scholarly study or to enter the workforce, their success depends on their ability to master new technology. While technology can and should be used in the F2F classroom, online learning spaces may better lend themselves to impactful instructional tools.

Flexibility

Online education provides learners with the flexibility of learning from anywhere and on their own time. However, it’s often overlooked that it also provides flexibility for learners who are running into class scheduling conflicts. By providing learners the ability to set their preferred schedule, we empower them to take charge of their educational journey and to overcome roadblocks, such as when a much-needed pre-requisite class doesn’t meet a learner’s available time slots.

Cost Reducing

Additionally, being able to accommodate work schedules in order to take courses may be the difference between having to enroll in another semester or graduating on time. Learners can save themselves a considerable amount of time and money with the flexibility of online learning. Online learning relies on technology that provides a greater degree of flexibility regarding learning materials, tools, and activities.  The online learning environment lends itself to the use of Open Education Resources (OER) as they tend to be more widely available in digital formats. It is far easier to insert an OER textbook into a course than it is to order physical copies, and it is almost always less expensive.

Data Trends from Clemson Online: AY 2021-22

Here at Clemson Online, we have seen an uptick in interactions with instructors who seek to provide the best online learning environment for their students. By supporting instructors, we do our part to ensure that Clemson students are exposed to a variety of quality learning environments.

We interact with hundreds of faculty and staff every semester, from one-on-one appointments to campus-wide virtual workshops:

Fall 2021

  • 1,378 total interactions
  • 303 unique contacts
  • 11 sessions and workshops about online teaching, technology, and best practices

Spring 2022

  • 1,828 total interactions
  • 293 unique contacts
  • 16 sessions and workshops about online teaching, technology, and best practices

Additionally, 22 online courses were reviewed internally using the Quality Matters Rubric. Three courses went on to earn the internationally recognized official QM certification.

Upcoming Events

September

Quick Hits: Intro to Kaltura

Learn how to use Kaltura within Canvas. Join this Quick Hits session to get a quick overview of the basics of Kaltura, from uploading videos to embedding them in your courses. Facilitated by Gray Jackson, Learning Technology Specialist. A Zoom link will be emailed to registered participants, 48 hours prior to the day of the event. Contact James Butler with any questions about this session.

To join us on September 1st, from 3:30-4:00pm, register for Intro to Kaltura here.

Workshop Wednesday: Kaltura Best Practices

Now that Kaltura is here, learn about best practices for incorporating it into Canvas to enhance your teaching. This session is intended for instructors using both Canvas and Kaltura to teach courses at any level. Note: this workshop is about best practices and not about demonstrating how to use Kaltura. Join us in person at Cooper 309 or virtually through Zoom. Facilitated by James Butler, Digital Learning Strategist. A Zoom link will be emailed to registered participants, 48 hours prior to the day of the event. Contact James Butler with any questions about this session.

To join us on September 7th, from 1:30-2:15pm, register for Kaltura Best Practices here.

Clemson Online – Where Tech and Teaching Meet



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