How You Can Help Students Who Seem to Not Want Help
July 13, 20180

Do you have students who struggle in your classes, yet will not ask for help? Do you conduct outreach strategies, or do you wait for them to contact you?

It would seem students should want the help of their instructors, especially when they are struggling with course topics, assignments, and meeting deadlines. But the reality is that this is not usually the case and as most educators know, students may even resist the very idea of asking for help and prefer to give up when faced with a challenge. This can occur even when an instructor has done everything possible to encourage students to speak up. For example, I have observed many online classes where instructors created optimal classroom conditions that were conducive for productive exchanges, similar to what I have...

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Online Teaching as a Career: Nurturing a Positive Mindset for Student Success
July 11, 20180

Do you take time to focus on the mindset of your students? Do you implement any teaching strategies to promote a positive mindset?

When you consider factors that are important for the learning process, from the perspective of your students, you might list factors such as academic skills, self-motivation, and time management. However, what any student needs to succeed over the long term is perseverance, persistence, and a growth mindset.

At the heart of all of these qualities and characteristics is a belief system which either supports or derails a student's progress. The beliefs that students hold about their academic abilities and capability to participate in the learning process will determine their level of effort, energy, and willingness to be involved. It...

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Strategies and Resources Needed to Transform Online Teaching
July 04, 20180

Do you know what it will take to become a transformational online educator? Do you know what it takes to develop a strong virtual online presence?

Many educators who begin to teach online believe they can make the transition easily from teaching in a traditional college classroom to an online classroom. What they don't realize, if they don't seek out resources to help them learn how to teach in a virtual environment, is that they are putting themselves and their class at a disadvantage. The reason why is due to the significant difference between classroom teaching and online teaching. It isn't because the principles of adult learning have changed, or the needs of adult students have changed, rather it is due to the change in the format of learning.

Educators who...

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Online Teaching as a Career: How to Become Visible in a Virtual Classroom
April 29, 20180

Do you know how to maintain an active presence in an online or virtual classroom? Do you understand the connection between an active presence and students' perception of your involvement in the class?

If you have taught an online course you know firsthand what it is like to teach in a virtual environment, along with challenges that are inherent for working and interacting in this type of classroom. Online teaching is viewed by some instructors as a function that must be managed, and others see the true potential that it holds and that it is a process to be nurtured. If instructors are going to create conditions that are conducive to learning they must do more than manage a class, they must be active, present, and available for students. This requires the development of...

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Discover Why Critical Thinking is Critical for Learning
March 19, 20180

Do you understand what critical thinking means? Is there an indicator when thinking becomes or transforms into critical thinking?

The phrase "critical thinking" has become widely used in this field and it is a skill which students are told they must learn. The challenge is that this phrase can have multiple descriptions when educators are asked to define it. The descriptions provided by students are even more varied and often described using clichés such as "thinking outside of the box", or they can come closer to what this concept means when they relate it to problem-solving.

This poses a challenge for the inclusion of critical thinking in a list of skills students need to learn because there isn't a clear standard regarding how best to teach it, along with an...

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How Can You Put Heart and Soul Into Teaching Adults?
January 01, 20180

Teaching students can be a transformative experience, for educators and students alike, when both immerse themselves in the learning experience through the exchange of ideas and discourse which sparks critical thinking.

Teaching adults is more commonly called instruction or facilitation, and is often viewed as a specific function with associated requirements that depend upon the person’s status and classroom environment. Some persons choose to teach adults as a career in a traditional university and others choose a non-traditional route, such as an online school or corporate classroom.

But why does someone, or why would someone, decide to teach adults as a career choice? I have found there are persons who are good with the delivery of information, effective...

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Have You Discovered Your Power to Uplift and Inspire Students?
August 31, 20170

Do you want to teach your students, or would you like to use the power of teaching to also inspire and uplift your students?

Many people view an educator as someone who is a subject matter expert in their chosen discipline, a gatekeeper to a school's policies, and the one who is charged with providing instruction through the teaching strategies he or she has implemented. As a point of reference: When I use the word "teaching" I am not referring strictly to primary education, rather I am using it as a generic term for instruction, as my perspective is written based upon my work in the field of higher education.

Many institutions value credit hours and scholarly publications as the primary criteria for hiring instructors. Yet having qualifications and publishing articles...

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