Discover How to Transform Online Teaching
March 28, 20210

This book was written to provide educators with a professional development opportunity from an academic leader and innovative educator. The purpose of this book is to inspire your work as an online educator, develop engaging instructional practices, connect with students in a meaningful manner, and perform your very best.

Every online instructor needs a set of tools, techniques, and strategies to make the process of teaching an online class more effective. Whether you are a first-time online instructor or a seasoned professional, there is something you will likely find beneficial for your work within this new book.

This book was written to provide educators with a professional development opportunity from an academic leader and innovative educator. You can choose to read...

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When You Overcome Your Doubts, You Become Limitless
October 10, 20210

Have you discovered the elation that comes with being able to follow through with your own efforts, when you overcome a challenge you thought was nearly impossible, and conquered fear of something new? You are able to accomplish this and more when you refuse to listen to and accept any self-doubts about yourself or your capacity to achieve your goals or dreams.

Yet as you know, self-doubts can be powerful detractors from your positive state of mind and best of intentions. While you may decide you are going to step forward and begin to take action, especially when this involves something important you've thought about doing for quite a long time, a moment of hesitation can sideline you. Some people find it easier to disbelieve than believe in their ability to overcome potential...

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Here's Why Students Need Intellectual Curiosity to Learn
July 22, 20210

What causes a student to want to learn? Is it the same reason why students want to seek out course-specific knowledge?

The standard formula in higher education is to add students and an instructor to a pre-built curriculum, and the result is the creation of a learning environment. To bridge the gap between students and the learning process are planned activities, along with resources to help students engage with the activities. But intellectual curiosity, a process which cannot be controlled, is either inherent or prompted by completion of planned activities or involvement of an instructor.

Learning within a formal classroom environment can be an intellectual activity. When the intellect of a student is engaged, cognition is elevated from automatic thinking to higher...

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Discover Why Learning Requires Interactions, and an Instructor
June 13, 20210

The field of distance learning continues to evolve, not just from a technological perspective, but also by the mode of delivery for online classes. When this field was first developing in the early 2000s for higher education, one of the primary concerns was related to the ability of this form of teaching to replicate traditional classroom learning.

Over time most online schools included some form of instructor-to-student interaction as part of the curriculum, typically through asynchronous discussions, thereby making it possible for students to still experience many similar elements of a traditional classroom. If there were still any lingering doubts left today about an ability to learn effectively in a virtual environment, the pandemic has helped to eliminate them. 

Now...

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Discover Why Kindness Is a Vital Online Teaching Characteristic
May 16, 20210

When you think about what it takes to be an effective online instructor, you may consider how to efficiently complete the many duties required each week. This would be a normal response as the online instructor is task-driven. From a purely classroom management perspective, there are always questions to answer, papers to evaluate, discussions to be involved in, timelines to meet, and so. Beyond the typical duties, an instructor will find themselves nurturing the developmental learning abilities of their students, and stimulate their intellectual curiosity. To be highly effective in the online environment, the instructor must have basic qualities, such as empathy and emotional intelligence. These are the qualities that are responsible for helping an instructor respond to conditions in...

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Do You Reward Students Who Work Hard?
May 01, 20210

As an educator, do you believe the process of grading or evaluating students' work is always completed in a fair manner? Are you able to maintain a strict sense of objectivity as you evaluate learning activities completed by your students?

I've thought about this recently as I reviewed the levels of a scoring guide given to me to complete for a written assignment. While the wording was seemingly different between these levels, there is still an element of subjectivity to the process. For example, is there really that much of a difference between "explains" and "completely explains" a concept? And who would be able to audit what an educator has assigned, as the score for a particular criterion, without injecting their own sense of subjectivity when attempting to interpret what...

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Be the Calming Presence Students Need to Stay Focused
March 13, 20210

Learning requires focus, and focus requires attention to what is being studied, thought about, formulated, and written. It is a process that occurs with intent and conscious involvement, and cannot be rushed no matter how much any student would like for it to be. Yet as any instructor knows, being enrolled in a class, especially an online class, is rarely the only responsibility a student has in any given week. For many students, classwork is often viewed from the perspective of what can be accomplished in the least amount of time, with the least amount of effort, and with the least interruption of all other required responsibilities. In other words, classwork is not always a top priority.

During pre-pandemic times, many students could balance their lives, careers, family, other...

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Show Patience with Students and Their Persistence Will Increase
January 19, 20210

A busy work week with many tasks to complete and not enough time. There are endless papers to review and discussions awaiting your participation. It's the weekly balancing act you find yourself part of and for most of the time you can manage it well, until the unexpected questions, demands, and emails or messages start coming in. You are able to balance the week effectively enough, until you find your time taken up by students and the end of the week rush occurs. This is when the feelings of stress really begin to take over and you have to be careful how you respond to your students.

Does this sound familiar? It's something I've experienced as an online educator for many years. While I've learned to develop an effective time management strategy, and become proactive in meeting...

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January 16, 20210

Listen as Dr. J offers encouragement for educators at the start of the new year, and discusses the importance of a positive mindset when working with learners.

Give Students a Reason to Feel Hope and They'll Succeed
January 11, 20210

Do you ever feel so completely overwhelmed by the external circumstances around you it seems almost impossible to remain calm and steady when you need to be present in the classroom? Has 2021 started with a sense of renewal but quickly given you feelings of apprehension and cause for concern?

A new year is under way and you have already felt the emotional pull of the year we all hoped to leave behind, along with the continued drama that fills the news almost every day. As an educator, you have to somehow separate yourself from the emotional reactions you may be experiencing, if you want to have a clear mind and remain focused on your students. But this isn't always easy to do, especially if you continue to pay attention to the news and social media. It can leave you feeling...

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