Posted by & filed under Job Listings.

matias-north-v8DSLoY80Xk-unsplashEach week we will summarize all the online adjunct jobs we’ve added to AdjunctWorld during the week for easy reference.

If you’d like to be notified right after we post a new online teaching job in your discipline area, giving your application a jump start, consider becoming a Premium Member!

This week we posted 43 Online Adjunct jobs from 20 schools.

We at AdjunctWorld wish you the best of luck in your job search. If you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to email Brooke for more information.

This Week’s Online Teaching Job Summary

9 Online Teaching Positions – Purdue University Global

8 Online Teaching Positions – University of Maryland Global Campus

4 Online Teaching Positions – Southern New Hampshire University

…as well as online teaching opportunities at: Bryan University, Bryant & Stratton College, Capella University, Columbia College, CSU Global, Elizabethtown College, Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University, Georgia Military College, Indiana Wesleyan University, Northwestern Health Sciences University, Parker University, Rize Education, Saybrook University, Strayer University, Texas A&M International University, Walden University, and Western Governors University.

 

Online Teaching Certificate Course

OT101: Fundamentals of Online Teaching

Space is limited! Register today!

samantha-borges-EeS69TTPQ18-unsplashOT101 is our 4-week, asynchronous, instructor-led certificate course that provides training in today’s best practices in distance education. Upon successful completion of OT101, you will receive a certificate to document your achievement which can be highlighted in your job applications and CV.

To date, we’ve graduated nearly 450 members of our community (read testimonials here). The next run of OT101 starts Monday, July 11th. Enrollment is now open, space is limited.

OT101 normally costs $249, but use coupon code SAVE30 at check out for 30% off, bringing your price down to $174.30. Premium members will notice an additional 25% off taken at check out ($129.48).

REGISTER FOR OT101 HERE

 

Premium Membership

premium buttonWould you like to be alerted to the jobs in your discipline(s) right after they are posted on AdjunctWorld, rather than waiting for this weekly summary? Over the past week we’ve sent out hundreds of daily job alert emails to Premium AdjunctWorld Members.  Click here for a description of all of the Premium Membership benefits and how to subscribe.

Thanks for being a part of the AdjunctWorld Community!

Posted by & filed under Job Listings.

surface-V_JGp9lnojw-unsplashEach week we will summarize all the online adjunct jobs we’ve added to AdjunctWorld during the week for easy reference.

If you’d like to be notified right after we post a new online teaching job in your discipline area, giving your application a jump start, consider becoming a Premium Member!

This week we posted 31 Online Adjunct jobs from 19 schools.

We at AdjunctWorld wish you the best of luck in your job search. If you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to email Brooke for more information.

This Week’s Online Teaching Job Summary

6 Online Teaching Positions – Purdue University Global

4 Online Teaching Positions – Southern New Hampshire University

3 Online Teaching Positions – University of Maryland Global Campus

…as well as online teaching opportunities at: CTU-Online, Florida Institute of Technology, Georgia Military College, Grand Canyon University, Herzing University, Joyce University of Nursing and Health Sciences, Life University, Loras College, Maryville University, Parker University, Saybrook University, University of California, Irvine, University of Maryland, Baltimore, University of New England, Western Governors University, and Worcester Polytechnic Institute.

 

Online Teaching Certificate Course

OT101: Fundamentals of Online Teaching

Space is limited! Register today!

samantha-borges-EeS69TTPQ18-unsplashOT101 is our 4-week, asynchronous, instructor-led certificate course that provides training in today’s best practices in distance education. Upon successful completion of OT101, you will receive a certificate to document your achievement which can be highlighted in your job applications and CV.

To date, we’ve graduated nearly 450 members of our community (read testimonials here). The next run of OT101 starts Monday, July 11th. Enrollment is now open, space is limited.

OT101 normally costs $249, but use coupon code SAVE30 at check out for 30% off, bringing your price down to $174.30. Premium members will notice an additional 25% off taken at check out ($129.48).

REGISTER FOR OT101 HERE

 

Premium Membership

premium buttonWould you like to be alerted to the jobs in your discipline(s) right after they are posted on AdjunctWorld, rather than waiting for this weekly summary? Over the past week we’ve sent out hundreds of daily job alert emails to Premium AdjunctWorld Members.  Click here for a description of all of the Premium Membership benefits and how to subscribe.

Thanks for being a part of the AdjunctWorld Community!

Posted by & filed under Job Listings.

convertkit-RvPiAVE-zWo-unsplash (1)Each week we will summarize all the online adjunct jobs we’ve added to AdjunctWorld during the week for easy reference.

If you’d like to be notified right after we post a new online teaching job in your discipline area, giving your application a jump start, consider becoming a Premium Member!

This week we posted 54 Online Adjunct jobs from 27 schools.

We at AdjunctWorld wish you the best of luck in your job search. If you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to email Brooke for more information.

This Week’s Online Teaching Job Summary

14 Online Teaching Positions – Logan University (1 listing, 14 discipline areas)

4 Online Teaching Positions – Bellevue University

4 Online Teaching Positions – Joyce University of Nursing and Health Sciences

…as well as online teaching opportunities at: American College of Education, American Public University System, Bryan University, Capella University, CTU-Online, Dakota State University, Drexel University, ECPI University, Georgia Military College, Grand Canyon University, Murray State College, Northcentral University, Oral Roberts University, Purdue University Global, Saybrook University, Southern New Hampshire University, Strayer University, Unitek Learning, Inc., University of Maryland Global Campus, University of Providence, University of Scranton, University of Washington, Valley College, and West Shore Community College.

 

Online Teaching Certificate Course

OT101: Fundamentals of Online Teaching

Space is limited! Register today!

samantha-borges-EeS69TTPQ18-unsplashOT101 is our 4-week, asynchronous, instructor-led certificate course that provides training in today’s best practices in distance education. Upon successful completion of OT101, you will receive a certificate to document your achievement which can be highlighted in your job applications and CV.

To date, we’ve graduated nearly 450 members of our community (read testimonials here). The next run of OT101 starts Monday, July 11th. Enrollment is now open, space is limited.

OT101 normally costs $249, but use coupon code SAVE30 at check out for 30% off, bringing your price down to $174.30. Premium members will notice an additional 25% off taken at check out ($129.48).

REGISTER FOR OT101 HERE

 

Premium Membership

premium buttonWould you like to be alerted to the jobs in your discipline(s) right after they are posted on AdjunctWorld, rather than waiting for this weekly summary? Over the past week we’ve sent out hundreds of daily job alert emails to Premium AdjunctWorld Members.  Click here for a description of all of the Premium Membership benefits and how to subscribe.

Thanks for being a part of the AdjunctWorld Community!

Posted by & filed under Online Teaching Resources.

alexei-maridashvili-gqk2hoqGAL0-unsplashWhen you are about to teach an online course, and you have been told that you need to choose a textbook, feeling pressure is understandable. For students, a textbook is a major purchase, and usually an expensive one, and so your decision has consequence. If your online course is asynchronous, the textbook is going to have to carry the day—you’ll rely on it, as will the students. You may even second-guess your choice as the course progresses! What to do?

There are two approaches—at the very least—in considering your choice of textbook. Some of them are practical concerns, and others involve sound pedagogical research, both of which we’ll explore. Once you know some simple things—like, how long is your class going to actually last? How easy is it to actually get the textbook?—then the shape of your class can determine what textbook best fits it.

Let’s start with practical concerns and then move into the bigger ideas. In each case, one of the important things to note is that student perceptions of textbooks can be incredibly important.

Practical Advice on Textbook Adoption

Ask yourself these pertinent questions before you decide on a textbook:

  1. First, how long will your class be? Best case scenario, can you align the number of chapters in the textbook with the number of weeks in your course? If a course stretches over a semester, and the textbook has 14 or 15 chapters, then that means you can use one chapter a week, which makes planning easy for you and the schedule regular for students. Teaching an 8-week class? A 16-chapter book rounds out nicely to two chapters a week.
  2. What is a reasonable cost for the book? I mean, students are students, and students are already spending an enormous amount of money—why not relieve the burden a bit? There’s no need to choose an expensive textbook if you don’t have to—and ensuring that the cost is within their budget also ensures that the students will actually buy it!
  3. Can you make do with using a previous edition of the book? That will surely make the textbook cheaper, but you also need to make sure that the book would be available. If you were teaching a small class of, say, ten students, and if there were enough of the older version of the textbook available on Amazon (or any number of good used textbook sites!), then that will work. But if your class numbers something like 50, well, then that might not work.
  4. What formats are the book available in? Sure, you can get hardcover, but it may also be available in paperback, eBook, looseleaf download, audiobook, or even an eCopy that is rentable (and that is usually cheaper, to boot).
  5. What do the reviews of the textbook say? If there’s one good thing about Amazon—and other book sites may follow suit—you’ll get reviews of the textbook by not only the professors who used them but the students who read them. Think of this as “social proof data.” If a book is singled out for praise and puffed up with positive reviews, you may have yourself the best choice. In a 2008 study of forty-eight college students by Durwin & Sherman, the research strongly suggests that students who read one textbook vs. another perform equally well on comprehension-focused exams. There is a secondary implication here: students are accurate judges of text quality! In fact, there was a significant, positive correlation between a student liking a textbook and their reading comprehension performance. When you are deciding on a textbook for your class, you can ask a potential student or someone who might take a course like yours to give you some feedback. When students help you, you get to be the one who learns!

What this means is a bit of online shopping and research—just like for any other book you’ve ordered for yourself. At this point, online shopping in general is second-nature to most of us. Use it to your advantage!

Pros and Cons of Textbooks

usman-yousaf--AQ-P_R25aI-unsplashOne thing to consider is the fact that you can make a textbook required, of course. If you do so, there are certainly pros and cons—and that goes for both students and faculty.

In the 2013 book The Required Textbook: Friend or Foe? Skinner & Howes reviewed the literature on “the required textbook” and drew it all up in a list of pros and cons, accounting for both faculty and student perspectives.

To start, here are the pros of requiring a textbook:

  • Textbooks provide foundational knowledge in a consistent way across all students – a text serves as the “voice of the discipline.” Everyone is literally on the same page, and they will remain so after finishing your class.
  • They serve as a “tour guide” as students to get their feet wet with a topic or discipline. They tend to be broad, especially in those intro classes like English literature and psychology.
  • They meet standards for accreditation.
  • It can take quirks of the instructor—as interesting as they sometimes are—out of the equation, and that means students who use the textbook at one university will acquire the same knowledge as a student who uses the textbook at another.

The cons of requiring a textbook were:

  • Instructors (like you) felt like it took a lot of time to choose textbooks – for a lot of general education subjects, there are way too many to choose from. It’s hard enough shopping online for shower curtains—try shopping for something like a textbook!
  • Students felt that required textbooks increase college expenses that are already, let’s face it, high to begin with. That, coupled with the fact that students may find that the textbook is not always valuable to them, makes it a grudging purchase.
  • Unmotivated readers may simply not benefit from a textbook purchase at all.
  • Visual aids in a textbook are nice (who doesn’t like a book with “pictures”?) but textbooks are rarely entertaining.
  • Textbooks demand a lot of time—and the reading falls outside of class time, and so they impede of student time.
  • They lack technological interactivity (although, since 2013 when this book was published, this is changing. A lot of textbook publishers are now integrating interactive web technologies to go alongside their textbooks – MyPsychLab and MyMathLab from the Pearson publishing house are examples).

With all that in mind, you can make an informed decision about choosing a textbook at all. If you choose a textbook, really pay attention to how well it acclimates the student to the subject—and allows them all to be on the same page in terms of understanding. Avoid high cost in both money and time, if possible—and with adult students, who are understandably busy, this is critical.

What Does the Research Say about Evaluating Textbooks?

Once you’ve decided that you’re going to use a textbook, there are some fine points to consider—and researchers have been looking at these points for decades.

Armbruster and Anderson (1988) pointed out that “’Considerate’ content area textbooks are ‘user-friendly’—they are relatively easy to read, understand, and learn from.” The three features of that consideration are structure, coherence, and audience appropriateness.

In terms of the structure of a textbook, the better organized it is, the more likely readers will remember the information in it. One of the strongest ways a textbook can be structured, they write, is through signaling: titles, preview words, headings, and summary statements all clarify the structures of passages and chapters, and the reader can more easily organize the information into a coherent structure for themselves.

ux-indonesia-8mikJ83LmSQ-unsplashThe authors suggest looking at the structure of the textbook: is its structure reasonable, and given your own knowledge of the subject matter, is the information structured soundly and appropriately as the discipline demands? Look for a well-signaled text, where headings and subheadings are informative, where everything from page layout to graphic aids reinforce the structure and create coherence. Look for signal words like “First…Second…Third…” and so on—they “signal” the movement of ideas.

Coherence means that the ideas of the textbook have clear relationships to each other. The greater the coherence in the organization of the textbook, the greater the coherence of ideas the student will make cognitively for themselves. Much of this can be simply grammatical; look for connectives like because, since, therefore—each of which describes the relationships between ideas. Transition statements help the students understand the movement from one idea to the next. The chronology of ideas should be easy to follow.

Is the book suited to your students’ knowledge and skills? If so, then it is audience appropriate. Reading comprehension and memory are dependent upon building upon students’ prior knowledge—and the main ideas should be clearly identifiable. This is reinforced by simple things like highlighting main ideas with italics, or bold face; preview or summary statements of main ideas—even making sure the topic sentence of a paragraph is the first sentence!

All this may sound obvious, but the fact is that researchers found many textbooks lacking considerably in structure, coherence, and audience appropriateness. “Admittedly,” they conclude, “the process of selecting textbooks using the criteria we suggest is more art than science at the moment.” All that’s demanded of you, really, is to be a critical reader yourself. judge a textbook accordingly—and it’s often the case that textbook suppliers offer free copies for teachers to review.

There are, as we have seen, many factors to consider in selecting your textbook, from cost to accessibility. What you can do is shop carefully and draw on what others have to say—whether professors or students—to make an informed decision. Review a book closely to determine whether it is coherent, and also whether it will fit your class’s length and course structure.

The rewards of your attention will result, as research shows, in student understanding. The buck stops there!

Posted by & filed under Job Listings.

surface-8rS5UgAc5iw-unsplashEach week we will summarize all the online adjunct jobs we’ve added to AdjunctWorld during the week for easy reference.

If you’d like to be notified right after we post a new online teaching job in your discipline area, giving your application a jump start, consider becoming a Premium Member!

This week we posted 38 Online Adjunct jobs from 23 schools.

We at AdjunctWorld wish you the best of luck in your job search. If you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to email Brooke for more information.

This Week’s Online Teaching Job Summary

5 Online Teaching Positions – Purdue University Global

4 Online Teaching Positions – Western Governors University

3 Online Teaching Positions – Strayer University

…as well as online teaching opportunities at: Albany Law School, American College of Education, California Institute of Arts & Technology, CSU Global, Emmanuel College, Frederick Community College, Grand Canyon University, IUPUI, Laurel Ridge Community College, Life University, Los Angeles Pacific University, Murray State College, Northcentral University, Rasmussen College, Southern New Hampshire University, The University of Tennessee at Chattanooga, University of Maryland Global Campus, University of the Cumberlands, Wake Forest University, and West Shore Community College.

 

Online Teaching Certificate Course

OT101: Fundamentals of Online Teaching

Space is limited! Register today!

samantha-borges-EeS69TTPQ18-unsplashOT101 is our 4-week, asynchronous, instructor-led certificate course that provides training in today’s best practices in distance education. Upon successful completion of OT101, you will receive a certificate to document your achievement which can be highlighted in your job applications and CV.

To date, we’ve graduated nearly 450 members of our community (read testimonials here). The next run of OT101 starts Monday, July 11th. Enrollment is now open, space is limited.

OT101 normally costs $249, but use coupon code SAVE30 at check out for 30% off, bringing your price down to $174.30. Premium members will notice an additional 25% off taken at check out ($129.48).

REGISTER FOR OT101 HERE

 

Premium Membership

premium buttonWould you like to be alerted to the jobs in your discipline(s) right after they are posted on AdjunctWorld, rather than waiting for this weekly summary? Over the past week we’ve sent out hundreds of daily job alert emails to Premium AdjunctWorld Members.  Click here for a description of all of the Premium Membership benefits and how to subscribe.

Thanks for being a part of the AdjunctWorld Community!

Posted by & filed under Online Teaching Resources.

jeswin-thomas-wRdYnqXtyYk-unsplash (1)When faced with literally hundreds of college courses, all of which make a pitch for the student’s attention (and eventually their attendance), how does a student choose which course to take? Course descriptions. Remember course catalogs when you were in college? You’d “shop” through them and see what struck you as interesting, pertinent, or just plain fun. As the University of California at Irvine has stated, “Course descriptions are a driving force behind the enrollment decisions our students make.”

Though there are many cases where a college will write a course description, there will be other instances where you will need to craft your own course description. You need to summarize the content of your course to intrigue students—and get them to sign up—and there are some basic guidelines to do so.

We’ll look at some of those ideas in brief.

The Basics of Writing an Online Course Description

Algonquin College has a helpful page for the writing of course descriptions. Let’s highlight some of the key points.

First off, the whole idea of the “course catalog” as you may remember it has changed. Much of the course descriptions—and this would be something transfer students and incoming freshmen would be privy to—will be online. “Therefore,” the college writes, “information must be clear, current and accurate.”

When you’re sitting down to begin writing a course description, ask yourself three questions: why, what, and how.

First, why are you offering this course? What is its point? The purpose and rationale for the course should be convincing—and also clear. Second, what exactly will students learn? Finally, how will they learn this content? What will be the activities?

Now, take these three points, in this order, and you can write at least a draft of a course description. Keep some style aspects in mind: present tense; active voice; simple sentence structure; avoid jargon if possible. Now, how to refine it?

Let’s move on to specifics.

Length of an Online Course Description

hannah-grace-j9JoYpaJH3A-unsplashThere’s a lot of ways to think about how long your course description should be, but one way that seems unerring is this: less is more.

Like anything else you write, you can certainly start long and then edit down to essentials. A few sentences. Probably less than 100 words. Remember, you want to keep these “bite-sized” for students who are looking to set their schedule quickly and want you to get straight to the point.

You could certainly think of the course description in terms of “marketing.” After all, you are trying to sell your class, really. The goal is to get students in the door. (Even if, being online, there is no door per se!) The course description acts as a kind of “advertisement” from the student’s perspective. Think about what it is you’re selling.

Focus on the Student

Mohawk College in California also offers a few tips on writing course descriptions. They lead off with this: “Be student-centered.”

Write for the student’s sake as opposed to writing “teacher-centered” or even “course-centered” descriptions. It’s not about what you the teacher are trying to get across, or what your meticulously designed course aims to do, but rather what the student will get out of it. What will be the outcomes for the student? What is it they will learn exactly? How will this move them forward?

You can write about what a student might expect from your class, but as the college points out, don’t frame that in cliché language. Avoid sentences like “Students should expect to…” blah, blah. At the same time—even though you are marketing the class, essentially—don’t write it like marketing glop. “This class will change your life…” Well, maybe, but don’t stoop to that level.

“Try to refrain from making yourself or the course itself the subject of your sentences,” writes the University of Notre Dame blog. Stick to how the student will benefit.

Active Verbs

Utah Valley University, among many other colleges, offers an interesting take on how to make the writing active in your course description: use Bloom’s Taxonomy.

Your course description draws on course learning outcomes, and those outcomes should be clear, measurable, attainable, and at course level. The action verbs you use will “explain how the student will show their knowledge upon completion of the course.” All of our English teachers, we hope, drove into us the need to write with active verbs, and this is no exception.

Some of the action verbs they recommend include define, interpret, create, summarize, and hypothesize. The “non-action” verbs, by way of comparison, include things like learn, understand, appreciate, and know—these are words open to too much interpretation.

eden-constantino-EGaf5ojV6n4-unsplashThink of the revised Bloom’s Taxonomy of 2001. The action verbs draw from each level of the taxonomy: Remembering, Understanding, Applying, Analyzing, Evaluating, and, at the peak, Creating. As teachers, we always want to be aware of using Bloom’s pyramid as we structure the class itself, and we certainly want to use it as we simply describe the class, too.

In considering your audience, and when using verbs that are active and indicate the learning that will happen, you can consider, too, that these course descriptions are read by more than just the students! They are read, as the university points out, by the general public—and that includes parents, other colleges, and businesses.

Where should the verb fall, by the way, in the sentence? Right at the beginning.

Here’s the opening sentence from an example of a Secondary Education Science course description: “Examines objectives, instructional methods and curriculum for teaching science in the secondary school.” Here’s a sentence from a course description of Public Speaking: “Develops competence in oral communication through performance, the development of critical thinking skills, arrangement of ideas, and use of evidence and reasoning to support claims.”

Straight and to the point, in language that any student, parent, or business manager could understand.

The Body of an Online Course Description

The University of Notre Dame, in a blog on writing course descriptions, goes on to point out what should be in the body. Once you’ve got an attention-grabbing, active verb opening, get specific and detail what the learning experience of a student will actually be like in your class.

What are the learning objectives? Tell the student what they’ll take away of value. What will be your teaching methods? You may use close reading or group discussion in your online class. What will be some of the course content? It may be readings, or videos. What will be the final accomplishment? Perhaps a portfolio, or a peer-reviewed essay.

“Keep the lists to a minimum and focus on the bigger picture,” says Notre Dame. And at least one aspect of the bigger picture is how your course will affect your student’s life, both educationally and professionally. Think of it like this, as Carnegie Mellon University puts it: “How will the course help students develop as scholars, learners, future professionals?”

That is the ultimate question—and it is likely the one that students, in the end, will be most concerned with.

What Are Your Adjectives, Anyway?

Before you write a course description, you will have to be clear on the course objectives—and the two shouldn’t be confused, says Dr. Babbi J. Winegarden of UCSD School of Medicine. “A course description simply tells what the course is about,” she writes. “You might consider the GOALS of the course to be linked to the course description; they are broad educational statements fitting the mission and description of the course. Specific measurable objectives, however, tell what the learner will be able to do upon successful completion of the course. Begin with the end in mind…

glenn-carstens-peters-RLw-UC03Gwc-unsplashSome of her points clarify a lot of what we’ve said here. Active verbs, for example; not only should they fit Bloom’s Taxonomy, making clear to students what they will do, but they will be verbs that are not open to interpretation: active words like write, identify, solve, construct, compare/contrast are specifica student can generally tell what they will do when they read these words. These are much different than a word that describes your course far more loosely like, say, “You will learn to appreciate…” or “You will come to understand…

What does “appreciate” look like? Or “understand”? But writing and solving is far more specific.

A second rule is to address these three characteristics:

  • Performance; what is a student expected to do?
  • Conditions; what are the conditions in which the student will do the tasks you set out (in an online class, think discussion board, for example)?
  • Criterion; how well will the student be expected to accomplish the task?

When considering all this, your course description should be unambiguous in the objectives of your class, the activities that will help students accomplish those objectives, and how they will be evaluated in their work.

Bringing it All Together

If you keep a student focus, use active learning words and inviting adjectives, emphasize value and how your course helps students reach their goals, and ultimately arrive at a digestible length, you know you have written a terrific course description! It’s always helpful to look at examples and to use your inner barometer to gauge whether what you are reading is a model of what “to do” or “what not to do.”

Posted by & filed under Job Listings.

md-duran-1VqHRwxcCCw-unsplash (1)Each week we will summarize all the online adjunct jobs we’ve added to AdjunctWorld during the week for easy reference.

If you’d like to be notified right after we post a new online teaching job in your discipline area, giving your application a jump start, consider becoming a Premium Member!

This week we posted 54 Online Adjunct jobs from 22 schools.

We at AdjunctWorld wish you the best of luck in your job search. If you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to email Brooke for more information.

This Week’s Online Teaching Job Summary

11 Online Teaching Positions – Purdue University Global

7 Online Teaching Positions – Liberty University

5 Online Teaching Positions – Grand Canyon University

…as well as online teaching opportunities at: American National University, Bryan University, Capella University, Central Texas College, Columbia University, ECPI University, Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University, ICOHS College, Limestone University, Mercer University, Missouri Southern State University, Murray State University, Nebraska Wesleyan University, Northcentral University, Rasmussen College, South University, Trident University International, University of Maryland Global Campus, and Western Governors University.

 

Online Teaching Certificate Course

OT101: Fundamentals of Online Teaching

Space is limited! Register today!

samantha-borges-EeS69TTPQ18-unsplashOT101 is our 4-week, asynchronous, instructor-led certificate course that provides training in today’s best practices in distance education. Upon successful completion of OT101, you will receive a certificate to document your achievement which can be highlighted in your job applications and CV.

To date, we’ve graduated nearly 450 members of our community (read testimonials here). The next run of OT101 starts Monday, July 11th. Enrollment is now open, space is limited.

OT101 normally costs $249, but use coupon code SAVE30 at check out for 30% off, bringing your price down to $174.30. Premium members will notice an additional 25% off taken at check out ($129.48).

REGISTER FOR OT101 HERE

 

Premium Membership

premium buttonWould you like to be alerted to the jobs in your discipline(s) right after they are posted on AdjunctWorld, rather than waiting for this weekly summary? Over the past week we’ve sent out hundreds of daily job alert emails to Premium AdjunctWorld Members.  Click here for a description of all of the Premium Membership benefits and how to subscribe.

Thanks for being a part of the AdjunctWorld Community!

Posted by & filed under Online Teaching Resources.

jane-palash--EFSnOZBf-Q-unsplashThink back to when you were enrolled in college. How long were your courses in terms of weeks and hours spent in the classroom? Chances are, if your college education was traditional—which is to say, typical—you likely enrolled in semesters. If that was the case, your classes probably took about 15 weeks to complete, and you were probably enrolled in classes for the “Fall” and “Spring” semesters. And as far as hours, you probably got used to around three to four hours a week for one class, with each class being around, say, 50 minutes.

Do online courses work the same way? Not at all—or rather, not necessarily. An online college course can range anywhere from 5 to 15 weeks, depending on what schedule the college follows: semester, quarter, trimester, or accelerated terms. Even hours can vary, and more so since the class doesn’t necessarily meet at a certain time. There are a lot of factors, then, to consider when thinking about online course “length.”

Research has shown that course length has no bearing on a student’s academic performance. Whether five weeks or fifteen, a student can get the same learning. So it is that you may find a variety of course lengths as you apply for online teaching jobs.

How Many Hours in a College Course?

This may be a good place to start, since the hours a class may take in order to get college credit will be generally around the same amount of time. Whatever the duration of a class—whether it happens over a semester, quarter, or an accelerated term—the contact hours generally will be 45 or so for the duration of the course. In a typical week of a semester, which many of us did back in the day before online education took off, that means you spend roughly three hours a week in a given class. By that I mean, three hours sitting in a classroom with a professor!

The online course, though, is far from “typical,” at least in relation to the traditional campus semester. In fact, even the “semester” is no longer the only schedule for college courses. And for online courses, “hours” don’t always matter, especially if the class is asynchronous—meaning, the class doesn’t meet for several hours a week. It may not meet at all.

What will probably matter more is how often a student logs in to class. That could be 2 to 5 times a week, depending on the teacher’s expectation. The student might expect to devote anywhere from 10 to 20 hours a week of work. If there is an interactive aspect of the course, like a class meeting done over video, that could range dramatically from 5 minutes to an hour a week. Experts differ on what is effective, but they all agree that maintaining attention is important: making content that engages the student and keeps their attention is important to consider in terms of time.

In an online course, students will essentially establish their own schedule for getting work done, responding to message boards and doing their readings. It may be more beneficial to think instead in terms of how many weeks an online course could encompass. That way, we can get a sense of what our yearly schedule as online adjuncts might look like. Let’s look at the various term lengths colleges typically schedule.

The Semester

The most common course length—the most traditional, even the most ordinary—is the semester. “What classes are you taking this semester?” is probably the most frequently heard question among college students as they sit around over coffees talking about their plans—at least a few decades ago, anyway. Fall and Spring, with a holiday break in between, followed by summer break—that’s the tradition. Or, in some cases, fall and spring may be followed by a summer semester! the Semester: What could be more nostalgic?

jane-palash-8EDoiUmHA4M-unsplashWhen we say “semester,” particularly for fall and spring, we are generally talking about 15 weeks, though they can vary around that number as well. Summer semesters, if they are offered, can be 12 weeks instead. In a semester’s worth of time, a student can reasonably take 5 courses at a time, give or take a class. Maintaining 15 credits is the norm.

At least one of the benefits of a semester should be obvious: students have lots of time. An instructor, too, has plenty of time to create and deliver the content, and students have plenty of time to get their work done. Given the amount of time, a student can expect things like midterm tests within a couple months of the course beginning—in shorter terms, those midterms will come far quicker!

In traditional brick-and-mortar colleges that offer online programs, students will take online courses that follow the same schedule as regular in-person classrooms. The semester, given the amount of time it entails, happens at a relaxed pace. Textbooks frequently have chapters that fit comfortably into one-chapter-a-week. For you, the teacher, you will have more flexibility when it comes to drafting out your schedule in terms of learning objectives, content, assignments, and discussions.

The Trimester and the Quarter

Colleges aren’t the only schools to use the trimester; many high schools have found this an efficient unit of time. Many first-time freshman will show up in their college campuses used to the trimester schedule, which may be around 12 weeks long. Three trimesters fit comfortably into the school year.

One of the benefits of the trimester is that the student can take more courses in the year. Classes can stretch over Fall, Winter, and Spring trimesters—and there may still be the option for additional summer courses, too. That said, students can’t take the full load of classes you’d take in a semester—instead, three or four classes at a time will be the norm.

Really, the quarter is not too different from the trimester. A quarter can generally be around 10 weeks. Like the trimester, this allows students to take more of a variety of classes over the course of a year because the terms are shorter—though the number of classes they could take during the quarter will be restricted: like the trimester, being enrolled in three or four classes during a quarter is a normal load.

Beginning with these shortened terms, content will begin to get more compressed for student and teacher both. You as the instructor will need to squeeze the same material into a shorter time frame, and you’ll have to think about how much time to give students to complete assignments—especially papers.

Accelerated Terms

It may seem unbelievable, but you can do an incredible amount of teaching—and learning, if you’re on the student side—in a very short time. How short? Anywhere from 5 to 8 weeks. This accelerated term will certainly be more demanding of students, and in all honesty, it can pose more of a challenge for the teacher, as well. The main issue is being constrained; students may feel like they don’t have enough time to complete the work. You might feel a bit rushed, too.

saffu-E4kKGI4oGaU-unsplashColorado College, as an extreme example, has courses that last three-and-a-half weeks, meeting from 9 a.m. to noon every weekday for a total of 18 days. With that schedule, students take only one course at a time: this is a block schedule. Eight blocks are offered per year, and the break between blocks is only four-and-a-half days! This block schedule includes online courses.

Oregon’s Linfield University, which hosts online programs, operates on a 4-1-4 system: the fall and spring semesters are a traditional 15 weeks, and in January they offer a condensed 4-week semester where students can take up to 5 semester credits, which amounts to one academic course and one paracurricular course.

Many colleges offer accelerated courses because they know that adult students just want to get done. Older students may be trying to get certifications for their careers, and they frequently have to juggle classes with real-world obligations. But just because the class is short doesn’t mean it has to be run at a breakneck pace.

Are Any of the Term-Lengths Better?

The short answer is, No. A 2019 study found that course length has no significant effect on how students perform between a 13-week and a 6-week version of the same course. That said, what contributed to their success was the extent of interaction the students had with the instructor. Keep this in mind! The shorter the class, the more important it is to encourage interaction—and not just encourage it but expect it. Which brings us to the issue of actually making a class that fits these different terms.

There are a lot of things to consider when crafting a course of any length. The course objectives must be taken into account to see that all are met. Content has to be measured out to meet them, and you have to consider how much time the students themselves have. No one should be overloaded, neither you nor the students.

Of course, there are pros and cons to every length of term. You may sacrifice the flexibility of longer classes and terms for a faster graduation time aided by accelerated courses, for example. But any term length can be made to work and benefit students.

In fact, many online courses are designed to meet the needs of students that differ from traditional freshman. Many online students are adults, and they have work and family obligations that need to be maintained while taking a course. There are a lot of students, too, who are simply more comfortable with the online version of classes, and they may simply appreciate the flexibility of time that an online class offers.

Columbia College in Missouri offers an online bachelor’s degree in less than four years. Post University in Connecticut offers an online business degree in as little as only two years. Colleges like these are hiring for people like you to teach their classes. Where do you begin?

Posted by & filed under Job Listings.

devn-i4mSOgSNt58-unsplashEach week we will summarize all the online adjunct jobs we’ve added to AdjunctWorld during the week for easy reference.

If you’d like to be notified right after we post a new online teaching job in your discipline area, giving your application a jump start, consider becoming a Premium Member!

 

This week we posted 39 Online Adjunct jobs from 24 schools.

We at AdjunctWorld wish you the best of luck in your job search. If you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to email Brooke for more information.

This Week’s Online Teaching Job Summary

5 Online Teaching Positions – Liberty University

4 Online Teaching Positions – Profhire, Inc.

4 Online Teaching Positions – Palm Beach Atlantic University

…as well as online teaching opportunities at: Cambridge College of Healthcare & Technology, CTU-Online, ECPI University, Grand Canyon University, Los Angeles Pacific University, Mary Baldwin University, Maryville University, Middle Tennessee State University, National American University, Northcentral University, Paul Quinn College, Purdue University Global, Rasmussen College, Saint Leo University, Southern New Hampshire University, Texas A&M International University, University of Arizona Global Campus, University of Phoenix, Western Governors University, William Carey University, and Worcester Polytechnic Institute.

 

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To date, we’ve graduated nearly 450 members of our community (read testimonials here). The next run of OT101 starts Monday, July 11th. Enrollment is now open, space is limited.

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Posted by & filed under AdjunctWorld Resources.

tim-gouw-bwki71ap-y8-unsplashWhen you’re applying for a job, cover letters just go with the territory—teaching positions, in particular. You may have written cover letters for college teaching positions, but have you written one for an online teaching job? There’s a difference.

Your task is to write a cover letter for an online teaching job that paints you as the ideal candidate. Because the letter will accompany your CV, you’ll have the chance to go deeper with the points of your resume, and most importantly, you can explain why you will be the best choice to teach online courses. To do so, you’ll have to be specific about your abilities to teach adults online.

You can begin with a cover letter template of your own creation, shaping it accordingly to different colleges. That is, you don’t have to write cover letters over and over! In this post, we’ll cover some basic information that will make this cover letter different from one that applies to a classroom teaching job, and instead showcases your skills in virtual teaching.

Cover Letters: The Purpose

No surprise that pretty much every college will ask you for a cover letter. After all, this is a job with some weighty responsibilities! In the course of one page, single-spaced, you’ll introduce yourself, taking the opportunity to go into more depth with what is on your curriculum vitae. So where to start?

Start with the job posting. What is it the college is asking for in terms of job description, experience, education, everything? The cover letter is your opportunity to address those points one by one. Consider this as you write: the cover letter is not about what you think are your shining capabilities, but rather what the college needs. Think how many cover letters and CV’s may cross the desk on the far side of this job posting—make yours rise to the top by offering what they want.

national-cancer-institute-NFvdKIhxYlU-unsplashFor example, here’s a posting from Rock Valley College in Illinois, an online adjunct position in History. Note what they want: for “the student to appreciate the traditions of various cultures, understand the role of change and continuity, and have interests encompassing humanities, social sciences, fine arts, and natural sciences.” This is a good place to begin to color your cover letter, showing how you actually do this as a teacher.

There are other finer points in Rock Valley’s general duties: “creating the class syllabus and planning class content,” along with assessing students. That’s more general, but still, they’ve made clear that, unlike other colleges, the instructor will be designing the syllabus and coursework—in other colleges, that material is provided by the department. Another point to touch on, even if briefly: yes, I have done this, and I am comfortable doing it—in fact, I’m good at it.

Write yourself a draft cover letter and polish it. You could—and probably should—look at many job postings—you’ll begin to notice some patterns in what the colleges are asking for. Shape your letter to that. When you’re satisfied with what you’ve written, keep in mind that you don’t need to completely write a brand new letter for each college you apply for. Instead, go over their job posting carefully, and incorporate specific points the particular college asks for. Oh, and don’t forget to change the name of the college at the header!

Key Points in Your Cover Letter

Considering the fact that you are applying for online teaching jobs, you’re going to absolutely need to specify some important details.

absolutvision-82TpEld0_e4-unsplashLet’s look at a basic job posting, this one for online adjunct faculty in business. Sierra Nevada College bullet points some responsibilities that we can expect. “Understanding of and ability to apply principles for effective online teaching and learning.” “Experience teaching online, preferably to adult learners.” “Online course development experience with QM is a plus.” Note the emphasis on online teaching and learning, adult students, and the Quality Matters platform for online learning—here is where you’ll address your audience.

Additionally, there are some qualifications the college expects strictly in terms of business experience. “Relevant industry experience” is listed here, as is “experience with internship placement and/or professional development centers,” and even “international business experience”! Answering to these points will demonstrate your prowess in the marketplace, which is exactly what the college wants and students need.

Now let’s put all this information together into coherence: This job posting means you would be teaching adults the concepts of business, and those adults are (most likely) either furthering their careers or starting a new one—and you are the professional who can teach them online, help them secure an internship, and offer professional life experience. In here lie the “key words” that an application for this position must specify.

Let’s look at the key words.

Start with “online distance education.” Do you have experience teaching online? If so, get that in your letter, and include an anecdote if it’s appropriate. Naturally, you can talk about other teaching experience, as well—but what if you don’t have online teaching experience? Then explain why you want to teach online, and how you’re prepared to do so. Do you have any professional development in online teaching? In the letter it goes!

Include your experience with adult learners. Most students in online programs are adults, and they have unique needs that you will be expected to appreciate. Describing how you will meet those needs is paramount. Whatever knowledge and training you have in adult learning theory—in andragogy, that is—you should let the college know that.

Bring in any occupational experience you have within the field you are applying to teach in. This is your professional, “real world” experience. In terms of teaching psychology, nursing, or social work, the experience of clinical work, running shifts in a hospital, or helping the public navigate paperwork to get benefits is invaluable. How will you use your experience to teach adult learners? You’ve learned a lot on the job no doubt; recall your own training, whether in college classes or on-the-job: what worked? What was relevant?

towfiqu-barbhuiya-B0q9AkKV6Mk-unsplashWhat experience do you have with learning management systems, or the “LMS” for short? All online programs are going to make use of some kind of LMS software, like Blackboard or Moodle or Google Classroom. If you’ve used one of these programs, make that evident—even if it’s not the specific one they’re using. Some colleges offer training in their particular LMS, and that’s great—but showing that you’re ready to go and will not need to start from scratch is a big leg-up. Figure out which LMS the school uses and, if you are unfamiliar with it, see if you can get some training. Rock Valley College specifies that the teacher will need to utilize EAGLE, their LMS. In another posting, the University of North Carolina at Pembroke specifies that they use Canvas.

In fact, any training you’ve had as an online educator—classes you’ve taken, conferences you’ve attended—should fit into your letter. This shows that you yourself are an “adult learner,” willing to commit yourself to doing an excellent job and keeping yourself abreast of the latest developments and research in online education and andragogy. Lifelong learning matters!

Finally, as I mentioned before, be sure to address the specific requirements a college asks for. Some, for example, ask for certain certifications—if you have them, or are in the process of getting them, be sure to include that information.

Make It Personal

This could be said for any cover letter, but I’ll say it anyway: it doesn’t hurt to show your enthusiasm. If applying for an online teaching job is exciting, say so. If teaching adults and helping them network professionally is fulfilling, let them know.

Bluegrass Community and Technical College, in their posting for online psychology adjuncts, makes a point that “BCTC provides excellence in learning and service with caring, experienced professors…and a focus on student success.” Further down, there’s another value that comes up in their description, and that is the point that their customized workforce training serves more than 500 businesses annually, and that the college maintains partnerships with the community it serves to “improve economic vitality and quality of life in the region.” If that’s a value you uphold, say so in your letter.

It goes without saying that one can search online for any number of cover letter templates. You are cautioned against this! There are some basic structures you can follow—and we offer them through our OnRamp course—but aside from that, the heart of your letter should really be, well, your heart! Passion is a defining characteristic of a teacher, and that passion should come through in your words. Don’t overdo it, of course, but make the case that your excitement will be passed along to students.

More Information:

We offer more insights into the online teaching job cover letter in two other blog articles:

Need Help with your Online Teaching Job Cover Letter?

samantha-borges-EeS69TTPQ18-unsplashDo you need individualized feedback on your cover letter? In our OnRamp course, we will do that—along with answering your questions about the job market, reviewing and editing your Statement of Teaching Philosophy and your CV, and even offering suggestions on interview questions. Look over the full course description and register easily online. You can also check out some of the kind things our graduates have said over on our OnRamp: Reviews and Testimonials page.