How to motivate students

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by sunfl0w
Last updated 7 years ago

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How to motivate students

Sure it seems obvious, but in an online class where students dependalmost wholly on the written word many instructors rationalize that what thestudents can't see or don't know won't hurt them. Perhaps not on a personallevel, but in terms of motivation and their rapport with you it can hurt quite a bit.Recently, I slipped on some ice in my backyard and broke three ribs. The firstthree days of dealing with this made using a computer nearly impossible. But Icouldn't just disappear for three or more days; just like my students, mymotivational efforts must also be constant. So I typed a very brief note to theclass, letting them know what happened and why I'd be absent for a few days.That little bit of honesty was all it took to keep the students active in my class.Things happen we don't anticipate, by keeping your students informed youprevent their motivation from fading. a.

How to motivate students...

If you are ho-hum and lackadaisical aboutyour course, expect the same from your students. They internalize and projectthe emotions you put out, and the more "into" the course you are, the moreexcited the students will become. Unlike a brick-and-mortar school wherestudents have the physical presence of the instructor to help lead the class, hereall you have is the written word to enthuse, arouse, and motivate the students'involvement in your course. Don't neglect choosing your words carefully,remember exclamation marks indicate a great energy behind those words (Butbe forewarned, use an exclamation mark at the end of every sentence and it will quickly lose its vibrancy).

Enthusiasm breeds enthusiasm.

Be honest.

As you come across jokes, anecdotes, and cartoons related to the coursematerial, sprinkle them throughout the length of the course.

Continue to build up an organized resource center.

Always address students by name when sending individualized emails andfeedback.

Don't hesitate to reach out to students with whom there is a motivationproblem.