Why Having a Structured Online Course Plan Is Beneficial

Lizzie Ottenstein
Shreejana Mainali
Having structured online course preparation with laptop, pen, and notebooks.

Teachers are doing their best to keep dozens of students from different parts of the world engaged and learning. Educators should realize that providing a clear and concise course structure is the first step in creating an interactive and successful online classroom.

Here are 5 tips to providing students an effective online course structure. 

Help students understand the process and goals

Organizing course content in an intuitive way helps students conceptualize the course. Online students often get confused and frustrated because the school’s Learning Management System (LMS) doesn’t provide structured course details, making it difficult for them to understand the learning process and goals. Students are bound to get irritated and distracted if they have to create the course framework and organize resources on their own. It’s imperative that instructors provide a clear and consistent course structure that offers intuitive navigation for students to keep students motivated and engaged. 

Identify learning goals 

With a comprehensive course structure, students can easily identify the learning goals of their courses. Learning goals are important because they set shared expectations between students and instructors. By having a detailed course structure, instructors have insight on course and student progress allowing them to better plan for the future.

Promote self-directed learning

Standardized course structures allow students to craft study schedules and complete coursework at their own pace. Students will learn time management skills, giving them the power to prioritize the most relevant topics and assignments. Self-directed learning gives learners the benefit of autonomy and lets them take responsibility for their own learning, giving  teachers the time to focus on creating more effective content or teaching modules.

Explore teaching methods and refine the module

Having a detailed course structure simplifies allows teachers to use a standard framework for future courses, ultimately lightening their workload. A clear and methodical course format helps students move from one course to the next. Instructors can focus on exploring new teaching methods and not worry about lesson plans.

Promotes student engagement

A course structure crafted with learner-oriented thinking plays a significant role in the usability of the content and engagement of students. Instructors can provide tasks, assignments, and supplemental resources to bolster learning. Providing an overview of the course structure that outlines readings, tasks, and assignments will give students direction and allow them to track their progress. 

A thoughtfully designed online course structure not only benefits students but makes the entire experience of teaching more comprehensive and effective. 

Teacher Tips: check out this teacher’s guide to creating and converting online content!