Five Ways to Integrate Culture Into Your Online Course Space.
Culture frequently has a significant impact on people’s lives. Perceptions, goals, and hopes can all be influenced by culture, as can anxieties and fears. In business, leaders are frequently encouraged to establish core values that serve as the foundation for the soon-to-be-developed culture. All members of an organization—management and non-management alike—are responsible for maintaining the culture’s growth and development based on the established core values once they have been established. A culture is always formed in an environment, and there are times when there is no culture at all. Your classroom is your business as a professor, and you are the leader. You are responsible for laying the groundwork and constantly guiding the culture.
Here are five ways to incorporate culture into room 1 of your course. Establish Core Values.
A professor is responsible for developing core values. Your culture is built on a foundation of core values. Students may benefit from incorporating a sense of culture into the classroom; it may also reduce students’ apprehension about asking for help, improve comprehension of the material, improve peer interactions, and improve retention.
Start designing your classroom around three to five qualities that you truly value in yourself, your students, and the class. Do you value being on time? Do you value perseverance? Do you place a high value on teamwork? These are illustrations of characteristics that can be adapted and begun to become your core values. Be sure to reflect these values in the content, attitude, and interactions of your classroom. Your students will emulate you because you serve as an example for them. To ensure that students are actively involved in the upkeep and development of this culture from the beginning, communicate your values as expectations early on.
2. Make culture a way of life.
Culture is an ongoing activity that involves the instructor as well as the student. The more you can involve students in developing the culture, the more fun everyone will have in the classroom and the stronger their bond will be.
Take some time to consider ways to encourage your students to participate in more activities while maintaining a sense of humor that encourages them to do so. You can encourage students to think critically and open their minds by getting them to go above and beyond.
Here are a few ideas that you can put into action right away to make your classroom culture more fun:
• Set up an in-class library where you and your students can make a list of books they must read.
• Throughout the term, make a “Pinterest”-like board where you and your students can add pictures that represent fun and the core values of the classroom.
• Highlight a student of the week who met a core value and explain why, if your school and the student agree.
• Request that students upload photos of themselves and their families. Discuss the reason for their journey through education.
Add these three practical ideas to the list.
3. Encourage Students.
“What gets measured gets done,” asserts John E. Jones. What is measured and fed back is carried out effectively; What gets rewarded continues.” By rewarding students, you encourage them to perform better, boost their self-esteem, establish rapport, and advance their learning. When it comes to rewarding students, you may not be able to send $100 gift cards to every student who earns an A on an assignment, but that is not necessarily how you build the classroom culture.
This is a reward if you take the time to consider ways to increase a student’s opportunities for growth in the classroom. They are paying to learn and attending school to learn. It is more of a “bonus” or “reward” for them the more you can enhance learning.
You can now add the following benefits to your classroom:
• Provide motivational readings or media, such as TedTalks or YouTube videos, for students.
• To make content easier to understand, make your own media.
• When grading assignments and discussions, provide detailed textual comments and feedback.
• Give real-world scenarios and outcomes as examples.
• Provide community or school-provided resources.
• Inform students about the various social media sites.
• Find ways to link the thoughts, comments, and ideas of students.
• Point out students who adhere to particular core values.
• Stay up to date on technology, hot topics, and trends to improve discussions about how current events relate to the present.
Add one reward to this list that you can think of.
4. Allow the student to work less.
Obviously, a student must exert maximum effort in order to earn this degree. However, if the professor does two things, the path to earning that degree may be made simpler: First, he or she establishes a culture that enables students to receive timely communication, and second, they anticipate a student’s needs.
First, for some students, asking a question is difficult enough, but to not receive a response or to miss a deadline while waiting for one can cause serious anxiety. A culture of fear, nervousness, and disrespect can result from this. Second, a seasoned instructor frequently anticipates a student’s inquiry. This is because teachers have noticed that the majority of questions are similar to one another or related to a particular subject.
First and foremost, respond promptly to the student. Check your email at least once per day from students, try to set a personal goal, and try to respond faster than the university requires. Remember that other students in this type of forum setting see the student’s question and your response if your classroom has an ask your instructor forum. Be sure to check that area of your classroom a couple of times per day. Never respond in a harsh, condescending, or critical manner. The student who asked the question may suffer greatly as a result of this, and the students who are reading this section of the classroom may feel more anxious.
Second, pause for a moment to consider each course you have taught. Did a common question or theme emerge in each course? Was there a worksheet that a number of students were unable to locate? Was there a particular portion of an assignment that was consistently misunderstood? Before that week, make an announcement and inform the students of what to anticipate or how to overcome the challenge they are about to face. This minor adjustment to your culture and practices enables you to place a greater emphasis on learning rather than on less important, routine activities.
5. Engage students in a greater cause.
We are more committed, happier, and motivated when we are connected to a higher purpose in life. This higher purpose need not solely be motivated by faith. It’s about connecting people to each other and resources to each other. A professor can foster a sense of community.
By connecting students to one another and to resources both within the institution and outside of it, you can foster a culture of connectedness in your classroom.
Students in your classroom can now connect in a variety of ways:
• Engage them on the school’s social media platforms.
• Inform students about the impact that LinkedIn can have on professional development, credibility, and job search.
• Connect the comments of the students and note any similarities.
• Inspire students to talk about how they overcame challenges similar to those faced by others in the class.
• Share content from websites, blogs, and other sources that might help a student with a particular problem (this can be done via email and not always in the public forum).
• If your school allows it, write letters of recommendation.
• Distribute a list to students and consistently mention the various university resources.
• Inspire students to discuss their personal aspirations and aspirations for their families.
What is currently one method by which you are able to link your students to a greater purpose?