Setting up your course for success

Purple text box with the title: Setting up your course for success beside an image of a laptop keyboard with a pad of paper and a pen on it and a cup of coffee beside it.
Creating and marketing an online course can be a great way to monetize your knowledge and expertise. But before you can start reaping the benefits, you need to set your course up for success. Follow these five tips to create a course that will have your students coming back for more.

1. Keep Your Course (Relatively) Short

When it comes to online courses, less is definitely more. In general, people have shorter attention spans when they’re taking an online course as opposed to sitting in a physical classroom. As such, it’s important to keep your lessons concise and to the point. That said, don’t feel like you have to condense everything into bite-sized pieces—just make sure each lesson covers one specific topic.

2. Include Engaging Videos and Graphics

We live in a visually-driven world, so ensure your course reflects that. Including engaging videos and graphics will not only break up the text but will also help capture and hold your students’ attention. Plenty of sites (like Canva) offer easy-to-use tools for creating high-quality visuals if you’re not particularly well-versed in graphic design.

3. Utilize Different Types of Assessments

Not all assessments need to take the form of a traditional essay or multiple-choice test. In fact, incorporating different types of assessments—like fill-in-the-blank exercises and matching games—can actually be more effective in gauging your students’ comprehension levels. And if you really want to mix things up, try incorporating group projects or case studies into your course material.

4. Make Use of Technology

There’s no denying that technology has changed the education landscape—so why not take advantage of it? If you’re not already using an online learning management system (LMS), now might be the time to invest in one. An LMS will allow you to create a comprehensive online learning experience for your students by incorporating all of your course content—lessons, videos, assessments, etc.—into one easy-to-navigate platform. 

5. Get Feedback from Your Students

Lastly, don’t forget to get feedback from your students! Not only will this help you improve your current course offering, but it will also give you some great ideas for future courses down the road. You can collect feedback by sending out surveys at the end of each session or by setting up a forum where students can post questions and comments.
Setting up your course for success takes effort and planning—but it’s definitely worth it in the end. By following these five tips, you’ll be well on your way to creating a successful online course that will engage and educate your students for years to come. 

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