teach online

Peer advice for instructors teaching online for the first time

teaching online for the first time

Teaching online for the first time? Not sure where to begin? You’ve come to the right place.

Ever since online teaching became the ‘new normal’, things are looking uphill for most e-tutors. Online teaching became one of the most popular jobs during the pandemic. Even those belonging to other industries switched to online teaching due to the plethora of opportunities it offered. 

There have been many success stories in the recent past about the teachers who have achieved great heights by becoming online instructors. And  LMS platforms like Learnyst had an important part to play in their stories.

However, for everyone else, who hasn’t seen success yet in their teaching journey or you are just starting out, then this post is everything you need as we have some world-class suggestions and tips from education experts. 

Advices from top online instructors for those teaching online for the first time

It might be a bit difficult to create the perfect course and pull an audience for it, especially if you are teaching online for the first time. Though the opportunities are high, there are plenty of competitors too making your life as a newbie teach a tad challenging. To help you in crafting the perfect course and to manage your classes, here are some peer advices from successful online teachers across the world – 

Plan your courses

“Teaching online requires more up-front work, particularly designing and inputting course materials thoughtfully into a course management system.” 

– Andrea Hickerson, Rochester Institute of Technology

You cannot directly start teaching when you enter the e-learning ecosystem. You need to plan your availability and check if it is really worth teaching online. Creating and tutoring an online course needs significant levels of commitment and effort. Make sure you have the necessary time to collect the resources and the motivation to start your course. Interact with your peers and observe how they take their online classes. This will give you an idea about the platform and the different methods of teaching. An online class is seldom complete without proper audio-video equipment. Having an HD camera and a good quality mic is an added advantage so that the students can follow the class easily and also take notes correctly.

Adapt to the change

“Much of what we do in a face-to-face classroom can be (and should be) adapted to the online classroom.”

 – Kalenda Eaton, Arcadia University

If you have prior teaching experience in a classroom, it might be slightly easy for you to adapt to the change. Try incorporating most of your techniques from your classroom teaching into the online version of it. Though online teaching seems completely different from classroom teaching, they have lot more similarities than your think. As a first-time online teacher, what you should focus on is to put your ideas into curating the best course possible for the students. Keep thinking out-of-the-box and come up with some smart solutions to make your efforts easier.

Be ready to face situations

“Taking the seat of a learner prevented me from getting upset and frustrated when there were technical issues or when activities didn’t go as planned.”

-Catherine Spann, edX

Things can go wrong in life including in your teaching career. There may be some disruptions during the classes such as connectivity issues. Always be prepared to face the tide and manage the class smoothly. Classroom management is challenging in a virtual learning environment. Instead of getting frustrated, put yourselves in the shoes of the learners and see whether your course is adding value. If yes, then you can forget all other imperfections in your teaching career.


“Create opportunities for your students to interact in the online environment as they would in an on-ground class.”

-Pamela DeCius, Saint Leo University

You can consider an online course successful only when more and more learners register for it. To reach this place, you must facilitate interaction between the learners and yourself. Making a course interactive is an art and it comes only with practice. The more you interact, the more the students get engrossed in the course. Prefer live classes so that you can meet your students and have direct interaction with the students. This will make the students participate in the course with a passion and also make them aware of your commitment towards their education.

Accept failures

“Failure is an option. If things are not failing, then you are not innovating enough.”

  •  Elon Musk

Do not get blown away by failures. Try to convert them into opportunities and make the best out of them. E-learning is a relatively new field for you and there may be mistakes in building your course during the initial stages. Get expert advice and improve them. Remember – You have myriads of technologies at your disposal that you can use to succeed in your journey.

Master the technology

“Develop your course the way you would ideally like it to be delivered — then work with the online team to facilitate that delivery using the variety of online tools available to instructors today.” 

– Satesh Bidaisee, professor, St. George’s University

E-learning purely relies on the power of technology to the best extent possible. To offer an excellent learning experience, become an expert on using the available technology. Today, you have a wide array of choices in terms of technologies (such as LMS) for online teaching. The technology you choose should be easy to use for you as well as your students. Learnyst, an LMS platform is committed to providing the best learning-teaching experience. It is simple to use but at the same time offers all the necessary features required for a good user experience.

Further Reading: 10 Teacher technology tools you didn’t know

Motivate the students by building relationships

“Teaching in an online environment also requires you to pay attention to how you build relationships with your students and how you help them build relationships with each other.” 

-Leigh Ann Hall, professor, University of Wyoming

Students need to be motivated continuously. It will help build confidence. Remember – every student is unique. While some are self-motivated, others need to be encouraged regularly. Build close relationships with every student and get the best out of them. Give them extra points for discussion, additional marks for on-time submission of assignments, and so on. Be the driving force they need, so that you get what you desire.

What is Learnyst and how can it help in your teaching career?

Learnyst is a home-grown LMS platform that offers teaching solutions through the cloud. It makes the creation, marketing, and managing of online courses like a child’s play. This indigenous LMS has many salient features that are very useful for career-starters – 

  • DRM Encryption security that prevents data theft from your course website. 
  • Personal branding that makes your course recognizable. 
  • With Learnyst, you can create mock tests to assess the performance of the students.
  • Onscreen Evaluation technology allows you to evaluate the answer sheets digitally. 

Apart from these, there are several other features to kick-start the career for those teaching online for the first time. To know more, click here.


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About Venkat

Venkat is a Business Analyst turned Content Writer who loves to put his thoughts into words all the time. He has nearly 3 years of writing experience and has expertise in writing for industries like edtech, e-commerce, technology, finance and lifestyle. When not writing, you can find him at his house engrossed in creating oil paintings.

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