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How to learn with us

Illustration of 3 learners introducing themselves on the course using different digital devices - laptop, mobile and tablet
© London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine CC BY-NC-SA

If this is your first FutureLearn course, please review the ‘Using FutureLearn’ quick start guide.

How will we learn?

Firstly, we recognise that learners on this course will come from a wide range of backgrounds, experiences and expertise on the topic. Your learning will be based on a series of interactions:

  • with the content,
  • with fellow participants
  • with experts
  • with educators

You can learn in this course by watching videos, listening to audio, reading articles, checking your understanding in the quizzes and through discussions and sharing reflections in the Comments area on most steps.

You’ll see a ‘Mark as complete’ tab after each step on FutureLearn. Steps are small sections of the course. When you are happy with the material and ideas in each step, press ‘Mark as complete’. Then move on to the next step, or return to the week by choosing the ‘To do’ tab at the top of each page.

Accessing videos: As well as playing the videos you can view the transcript of each one beneath the video player. In the “Downloads” section, you can download video content as PDF. Subtitles are available for each video, and can be accessed via the player controls.

Think about how you learn

There is no single way to approach this course that guarantees success. The way you learn depends on many factors and will not necessarily be the same as other people. This course will give you plenty of opportunities to discuss your ideas and methods with other learners, and you might like to ensure that you’re prepared for this.

Active learning is a good way to maintain enthusiasm and gain confidence. Active learners don’t just read or watch course materials but find other ways to engage with them. For example:

  • Taking notes on the course materials. Which aspects are most meaningful to you, and which are you struggling to understand?
  • Working out connections between the current step and previous ones to help build a clearer picture of a topic.
  • Re-reading material from a previous step if it relates to a difficult new topic.
  • Asking yourself questions about what you’re learning and how it relates to your own experiences.
  • Discussing your learning with others, and considering how you can apply this learning to your work.
  • Explaining what you have learnt to others if they are struggling.

Graphic showing how learners can turn passive learning (hear, see and read) into active learning by making notes about their learning, discussing, commenting or reflecting on their learning or teaching or sharing their learning
(Click to enlarge)

Join the discussion

I hear – I know
I see – I remember
I do – I understand
Confucius – ancient Chinese philosopher

Almost every step has a Comments area where everyone can comment and discuss the course material and we regularly prompt you to share your thoughts and ideas. We also set more focused conversational tasks in specific Discussion steps. You can contribute to these conversations as and when you are able to.

To see all the comments on a particular step, click the pink speech bubble icon and the comments will be revealed. The number next to this icon tells you how many comments there are for this step. If you find a comment which is really useful or interesting, click the Like button!

Following some simple rules will help you have effective discussions:

  • Keep your comments brief and to the point.
  • Read your comments and replies all the way through before you post them. You can’t delete a comment but you can edit your comments.
  • Criticise the idea, not the person – don’t write a reply that you wouldn’t say face to face.
  • Always try to write clearly and avoid using jargon. Learners vary in culture, age and experience and not everyone has English as their first language.
  • If you see a message that you think is offensive click its ‘Report’ flag icon. It will be reviewed by FutureLearn and will be removed if they agree with you.

Re-using the course materials

Unless stated otherwise, the materials on this course are published under the Creative Commons license (CC BY-NC-SA-4.0) which permits non-commercial re-use without asking us for permission. We encourage you to download, adapt and share these materials for teaching and learning.

Getting started checklist

  1. Set up your profile. If you feel comfortable sharing personal information, add some basic notes about your country and your role. This helps the lead educator and course mentors to give you appropriate advice.
  2. Introduce yourself in the next step, it will allow you to build connections with your peers and the course team.
  3. Start the course and share your views in the Comments as you go through the course. 4. The course is designed for you to do it at your own pace. We do recommend that you try and find some time each day to cover the content.
  4. Don’t skip the Quizzes – they help you to recall key information and reflect on the content.
  5. As you complete each step, press the ‘Mark as complete’ tab. You may be eligible to purchase a certificate if you complete enough steps. Use the “Progress” tab at the top of each step to view how much of the course you have completed.
  6. If you have questions on any of the content please leave a a comment for the Course Host, in any of the Discussion threads. The Course Host will forward it to the appropriate expert educator.
© London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine CC BY-NC-SA
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