7 Tips to Successfully Complete Student Introductions in an Online Class

JULY 31, 2017

7 Tips to Successfully Complete Student Introductions in an Online ClassAre there any suggestions or protocols for introducing yourself in an online class environment? This is a question asked by a reader who just completed her first introduction in an online class and realized that everyone else had taken a different method.

Usually, introductions in an online class are held in a discussion forum. Each student creates a new thread with a text-based response and consequently replies their peers’ posts. Educators occasionally give exact directions for introductory activities; however, this is not always the case.

When offered broad directions to “introduce yourself,” the responses of classmates can differ regarding length, information included, etc. What should you share? Although there’s no accurate approach to introduce yourself in an online class, there are quite a few tips for making the most of this chance to get off to a good start in a new education community.

Stay In Context

Determine the type of information that would be helpful to your particular course. Consider how you enrolled in this program or course, whether you have experience with the topic, and what you intend to achieve from the course. Let the tone you use and information included (i.e., language, approach) be professional and relevant to your participation in the program.

Include Personal And Professional Information

It’s useful to incorporate something about your interests and other things that concern you outside of class. Providing your location might also be helpful – many eLearners like to meet up in person if they can, and that’s how study groups emerge. Adding your city is fine; however, it’s needless to include details such as your residential address. You can provide your time zone to give some indication of your availability for live sessions and group work.

Consider Adding A Photo Of Yourself

It is always pleasant to add a face with a username. Remember that if there are procedures for an introduction assignment, you’re uncomfortable with (e.g., information about family, adding an image) just let your tutor know about your reservations in an email – other options might be available.

Focus On Your Instructors And Classmates

As you advance through classes in your online degree, you will probably come across the same group of students constantly and will get to be acquainted with each other better along the way, although in that initial class everybody is new. Asking yourself, what do you wish to share with them about you, would be a good place to start.

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Include Multimedia

For professional networking, your introduction can be extended by including links to social media profiles or personal web pages, for instance, LinkedIn, Facebook and Twitter. Individual eLearner “home pages” could also be part of the Learning Management System (i.e., Moodle, Blackboard) of your school. Other online tools, for instance, VoiceThread, enable you to add images, video, and audio, plus interactive feedback. You could also discover the use of these tools is mandatory in your introductions as instructors seek better methods to break the ice in online classes.

Use Your Educator’s Introduction As A Guide

This is a great demonstration of what information your instructor considers vital to share. Pay closer attention to it and use it as a model of what to add in your online class introduction and how long it should be.

Never Forget To Reply Your Course Mates!

You won’t get an immediate connection with everybody, but developing a rapport through shared interest starts with class introductions – reach out to course mates who share same interests by responding to their introduction posts.

While many learners enter online classes with the prospect that they will have some level of anonymity in their classrooms, be assured that having an active presence in your online classes would make a huge difference not only in your level of studies but also in your overall experience. Be prepared to partake as a member of the community, starting with a strong introduction.