For Lectures and Larger Courses

By Stacey M. Johnson, CFT Assistant Director, Vanderbilt

Edited for McNeese Faculty, Dr. Wendi Prater, Director of eLearning, McNeese State University

For anyone trying to move course content online, it can be challenging to translate what they already do well in a face-to-face classroom into an online classroom environment. The most important thing to consider is how to clearly communicate with students about expectations and course requirements.

For Lectures / Larger Courses  Lecture Video. Homework Quiz. Live Q&A Sessions On Campus.

In a lecture-based class, the instructor will typically prepare lecture slides and a handful of check-in activities with students to ensure that everyone is making sense of the content. After class, students may have practice sets or other homework to complete. Students in larger classes may also have the opportunity to attend office hours with a course Teaching Assistant (TA) to ask questions and go over challenging material. 

How would this class format work online? Consider this possible model as a place to start: Lecture Video. Homework Quiz. Live Q&A Sessions Online.

  1. Create several modules in the content area of your Moodle course to contain all the materials and activities for your class meetings. Make sure to name the modules in a way that its contents are easily recognizable to students. Add a description to the module selecting the "Turn editing on" button. Then select the pencil next to the Module name to rename it. To add the description to the module, select the gear icon below the module name and then add the description to the summary text box. Once the module is renamed and the description has been added, outline clearly for students the specific steps they will need to complete the activities in the class meeting by adding activities and resources to the module. What will the need to watch? Read? Complete? Submit? Discuss? etc.
  2. Build your video lectures using the BigBlueButton tool  in Moodle to create a video in which you talk over your lecture slides. A couple of important tips for making educational videos:
    • In general, breaking up a longer lecture into several videos of no more than 10 minutes long is a good idea. It is both easier for you to produce as the instructor, and easier for your students to watch. Longer videos with no breaks between are just not as effective. 
    • Consider adding captions to your video to make it even more accessible to students. Captions can be edited as well.  This knowledgebase has articles to recommend how you can quickly transcribe and add captions for your videos.
    • Add your finished video lecture or a URL to the video in the module.