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Active Learning in Online Courses

Active learning is an activity in a course that goes beyond passively listening to a lecture or a video.  It is a learning technique that challenges students to engage through mental contributions, hands-on activities, or the process of investigation, discovery and interpretation.  While listening to lectures or watching relevant videos are generally passive learning on their own, these are methods that can be enhanced with the thoughtful addition of active learning techniques and activities. This section includes strategies for incorporating active learning into blended and online courses.

Student Engagement in Online Learning

Student engagement includes the quantity and quality of interactions with people and content in a course. When students are engaged, there is greater opportunity for learning. This section overviews best practices for ensuring high levels of engagement in online courses across four different categories: Academic Rigor & Engagement, Faculty Interaction, Peer to Peer Interaction, and Structure & Organization.

Assessments

In education, the term assessment traditionally conjures the thought of a final exam. However, it can also be applied to other assignment activities such as a discussion board or performance-based assignments (aka authentic assessment). In each instance though, the assessment is thoughtfully prepared to measure specific student learning objectives. This section contains more detail on incorporating different types of assessments as well as ensuring that they are high quality and aligned to your student learning objectives (special consideration is given to assessments in online courses).

Learning Analytics

Learning Analytics is the analysis of student activity data in order to make predictions about likely learning outcomes and prescribe appropriate interventions where needed to improve those outcomes. This section contains an overview of the 3 phases of Learning Analytics: Collecting Data, Analyzing Data, and Taking Action.

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