Engaging Students via Technology

Student to student interaction

Design assignments that encourage interaction among students, such as short assignments that require students to engage each other on a discussion board.

Assign projects that can be completed in one class period in which students receive feedback from other students. Alternately, assign longer-range projects that require them to communicate outside of class with some of the methods below. Having someone else to work with often helps students understand content better.

Have students “teach” (review) new material to each other in groups of 3-5 and then report back to the class with a coordinated response (discussion, whiteboard, u.osu.edu post, or virtual presentation).

Have groups co-write and post definitions of new terms or concepts on a class-based wiki. Have other students review and comment on the validity and usefulness of the definition.

Distribute a clear response rubric to students for an assignment. Review and demonstrate an example (perhaps with an online video). Have students respond to projects from other students in discussion groups.

Student to class interaction

Include review questions in course content. Use a real time response system to allow students to respond to questions in PowerPoint slides, online videos, etc.

Display responses in aggregate to students in the class so they know how their answers compare to other students.

Student to teacher interaction

Office hours

  • Meet students online through online office hours. This can be accomplished even with older technologies such as telephones and rapid-fire email. Instant Messengers, chat rooms, and texting allow you to quickly exchange text with students. Video virtual office hours can be supported with Carmen Connect or Skype.
  • Don’t neglect the power and convenience of face-to-face meetings. Not all online students are remote and many are available to talk in person, if you’d prefer.

Audio/video recordings can be a powerful way to engage your students, since the tone of voice and presentation can make meaning clear to your students. Record them in the ASC studio (142 Hagerty Hall) or via your smartphone or laptop for delivery to students.

If material for your class includes topics you’ve researched, consider including items that show your academic work in action. Potential items include “home videos” or pictures of research sites, virtual tours of remote locations, etc. Production values are less important than showing students your engagement with concepts related to the course material. Your enthusiasm will energize your students and enhance their interest in the material.


Article ID: 16542
Mon 9/19/16 10:58 AM
Sun 4/2/17 11:10 AM