How to use this course
Empower each other
We designed this course to be community-driven, with FutureLearn’s social learning pedagogy at its heart. Our course community includes teachers and educators at all levels and disciplines, from primary to higher education, and we encourage you to learn from teachers in different contexts as well as connecting with people working in the same areas as yourself.
We will touch on many different approaches – not just whether to deliver a class over video call or upload a recorded lecture, but also how to facilitate discussions and collaboration between your students, and how to encourage and support them in self-guided learning.
We hope this course serves to develop a community of practice through allowing us to share ideas, support each other, and build libraries of shared resources.
Learn together: how to work through this course
We know many of you are under time pressure, and we want the course to fit alongside your day-to-day teaching practice, without being a burden or extra ‘homework’.
We are following a task-based approach, with the majority of stated learning time (this course is described as 2 hours per week) feeding into work you’d be doing anyway: teaching, planning, adapting, and reflecting.
We’ve structured each week so that you have a chance to examine two themes or aspects of online teaching – one related to supporting or engaging your students, and one related to approaches, tools, or delivery ideas – and discuss it with the community.
Each week you’re invited to take what you’ve been discussing up to that point, choose the parts which are most relevant and useful to you, and apply it in your teaching.
After that, you will have a chance to come back to this course, reflect on what went well and what didn’t, and share feedback and ways of moving forward. We hope in Weeks 2 and 3 you will build on what you started in Week 1, growing in confidence as you develop insights and skills.
Questions and support
Each week, the course creation team will be online to get involved in the comments and discussions, but please do take the time to read and respond to your fellow learners.
A designated weekly Q&A step – ‘Your questions answered by the Educators and Course Mentors’ – is a place for you to note any outstanding questions for the course team to respond to. Those with the most ‘likes’ will be addressed each week.
What’s happening this week?
We’re starting off by looking at the importance of putting your students at the centre of the decisions you make, and ways to adapt your existing teaching practice to an online context.
Week 1 Learning Outcomes are:
Discuss the benefits and challenges of moving classes from face-to-face to online
Develop plans to set your students up for success
Create and share approaches and techniques for the continuity of moving teaching and learning online
Just as many of you are being asked to teach in an entirely new way, putting this course together as a rapid response to the teaching situation the current COVID-19 pandemic has thrown us into is a new experience for us.
We want to be as transparent as possible about what we’re doing and why, as well as responding to your feedback as we go, so we invite you to share your thoughts about what you need and what works for you. If you haven’t already taken our survey, please take a moment to do so. Your suggestions and comments will help us to iterate, update and review regularly for future course runs.
If you’re discussing the course on Twitter, Facebook, or the social network of your choice, don’t forget to use the course hashtag #FLteachonline.