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Workload Management for Online Educators

July 17, 2009

Practitioner Document - ABSTRACT

This Practitioner Document compiles key points for instructors and students. Instructor topics include: instructor goals & issues, what works for instructors, assumptions that could be preventing instructors from moving ahead, and grading. Student topics include: student issues, tips for students from students, managing student expectations, student support and technology tips. Each section includes a bulleted list of important “take-aways” from the sessions. Full documents are available for paid Sloan-C members.

What Works for Instructors (sample):

  • Multiple calendars
  • Strategic discussion forum strategies: be visible, stay focused, give specific feedback, use Socratic method of inquiry, communicate high expectations, be flexible, fair, positive, and lead by example

Grading (sample):

  • Read through 10 papers before grading the first one to find out commonalities
  • Mastering the nuances of your LMS, e.g. Blackboard has a pulldown menu

Assumptions that Could Prevent Instructors from Moving Ahead (sample):

  • Grading: wanting to empower students to take on this responsibility
  • New technology: if I use new technology, it pressures other faculty to ‘follow’

Student Tips for Other Students (sample):

  • Dig for more information when responding to DQs
  • The syllabus is your bible — follow it!

Technology Tips (sample):

  • Using laptop/desktop at the same time while grading (and/or two monitors)
  • Repeat comments:,
With acknowledgements to the participants of the Sloan-C workshop Workload Management for Online Instructors, July 2009 for their contributions to the discussions that formed the basis for this Practitioner Document – Thank you.

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