With their many pros, virtual classrooms present one persisting challenge for instructors: learner engagement. If you’re in charge of a virtual classroom, you know just how hard it is to keep students motivated to keep learning and engaged and concentrated during your live streams.
Luckily, you don’t have to leave learner engagement to chance. Here are six changes you can introduce in your online lectures, such as incorporating interactive activities, that will encourage participation and put together by experts specializing in education. These changes, including the use of interactive activities, pay off tenfold in learner engagement, making it easier for students to grasp and apply the concepts covered in their research papers. So, when you say "Write my research paper", remember that implementing these engagement strategies can greatly enhance the quality of your work.
In this blog:
- Use Visual Aids & Media
- Set Up Polls, Quizzes & Surveys
- Let Your Learners Chat
- Plan a Live Q&A Session
- Invite Guest Speakers
- Go on Virtual Field Trips
- 6 Bonus Tips for Boosting Learner Engagement
- Final Thoughts
🖼️ Use Visual Aids & Media
Let’s face it: looking at the same face barely moving in the frame for an hour or so is boring. So, if all that your students see are you talking, you’re bound to lose their interest – fast.
But the beauty of live streaming is that you can show instead of tell! You can rely on all sorts of visuals to illustrate your key points. You can show videos or share your screen (e.g., to demonstrate how to code a function in real-time). You can also prepare a presentation with visual aids (e.g., graphs, key points) and show it to your students.
📊 Set Up Polls, Quizzes & Surveys
Engaging learning experiences have to be interactive. You can add this interactivity to your virtual classroom with polls, quizzes, and surveys strategically placed throughout the stream. With them, you can also collect learner feedback in real-time to understand if there’s a learning point you should return to.
Adding these interactive elements isn’t always available out of the box, depending on the tool you’re using. So, make sure to choose the best live-streaming tool that works best for you.
💬 Let Your Learners Chat
Having a chat for participants is a de-facto standard in any tool. But if, for some reason, you still haven’t enabled learners to use it, reconsider it. The chat allows them to ask you questions, respond to your prompts, share their thoughts – and interact with each other, of course. All of this makes for a more collaborative learning environment.
However, keep in mind that how useful the chat is depends on the number of people participating in it. If it’s in the hundreds or thousands, keeping track of messages becomes tough. Chats work best when groups are relatively small (up to 20-30 people). For mid-sized groups (30-100 users), you may need help from a chat moderator – a separate person responding to messages.
🎙️ Plan a Live Q&A Session
The best research paper writing services also notice a trend: students are more engaged when they can ask their instructor questions. So, encourage your learners to pick your brain during the live stream – and set aside enough time to answer their questions in detail.
There are several approaches to Q&A sessions you can choose from. You can dedicate five to ten minutes of your stream to answering questions – or organizing a separate Q&A live stream. As for the questions, you can gather them before or during the stream; it’s also up to you.
🎤 Invite Guest Speakers
Why not share the spotlight with an expert in the field ready to share their knowledge? Having another expert with you allows you to present the educational content as a conversation rather than a lecture. Such interviews are more attention-grabbing than plain monologues.
For example, if your live stream is about putting together a knockout resume for first-time job seekers, you can invite a recruiter from a company that often hires students. They can weigh in on what works and doesn’t in resumes and share their experience from the other side of the process.
🌍 Go on Virtual Field Trips
Who said students have to go on a field trip in person? Armed with your smartphone or camera, you can take your learners on a field trip without them having to leave their living room! For example, if your virtual classroom focuses on archeology, you can take your learners on a field trip to an excavation site.
Streaming outside of your office or home comes with several caveats, though. You need to make sure your device’s battery is fully charged to avoid a mishap. It’s best to verify the internet connection is strong enough at your destination, too.
💡6 Bonus Tips for Boosting Learner Engagement
The changes above require some preparation on your part. But these aren’t the only ways you can boost engagement in a virtual classroom. These six small changes can also do miracles for keeping your viewers immersed in the live stream:
👉Use people’s names when responding to their questions
👉Prompt conversations in the chat by asking questions
👉React to the messages in the chat
👉Introduce gamification and rewards to the learning process (e.g., recognize the most active participant of the live stream at the end of it)
👉Speak the language of your audience and use the references and analogies that speak to them
👉Ask your viewers for feedback after the session – and act on it
📝 Final Thoughts
While there are plenty of ways you can boost your students’ engagement during a live stream, there are also many ways you may accidentally discourage their participation. For example, if you fumble around setting up a poll for a whole minute, your students may get easily distracted.
So, to achieve maximum classroom participation, make sure you mitigate the risk of any technical issues. If you’re new to live streaming (or just need an organized prep checklist), we have a comprehensive guide on setting up your stream, from getting and testing the equipment to getting in the right mood.
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