Due to the global COVID-19 pandemic, the world is now shifting learning, training, and work online to accommodate for the safety of learners, educators, and workers. To make the transition to online learning easier, eThink has compiled a variety of helpful eLearning resources for both higher education institutions and corporate organizations that may help your team get through this difficult time with a little more ease.
When it comes to the technology used to support online learning, the learning management system (LMS) is typically the hub of learning. Most colleges and universities already have an LMS in place, making the transition to completely virtual learning more manageable. Similarly, many companies may already have an LMS in place to support workplace learning initiatives and to provide a virtual resource hub for employees. In this article, we’ll share some resources that illustrate how the LMS can accommodate various types of learning to effectively transition from a formerly in-person or hybrid learning approach to a fully online one.
(If you are currently looking to support online efforts with an LMS, eThink can help. Please contact us.)
Inside Higher Ed recently published an article with helpful information about transitioning to online instruction. Although this article is geared towards the university setting, it’s a great read for not only institutions that are currently moving their classes online, but it can provide helpful insights into how companies can transition workplace learning into an online environment as well.
We’ve also compiled a list of eThink blogs and articles that could be helpful to your team:
- Going Digital: How to Move from Instructor-Led Courses to Online Distance Learning
- Training and Managing Remote Teams Using an LMS
- The 5 C’s of Online Course Design
- A Step-by-Step Guide to Designing Blended Online Courses
- Building a Modern Virtual Learning Environment (VLE)
- 5 Effective Ways to Track Training Data in Your LMS
- eLearning Hacks: Ways to Increase Information Retention Among Learners
- Help Your Help Desk: 4 Tips for Improving Your Moodle Help Desk Experience
You can explore more articles on our blog.
In addition to the LMS, there are a variety of other eLearning technologies that can assist you in providing an engaging and effective online learning environment…
Your transition to remote work and learning is likely to involve the use of video resources. Unless your institution uses a video management and streaming platform such as Panopto or Kaltura, we typically recommend embedding or linking to videos placed on YouTube or Vimeo.
Another great alternative we recommend is Poodll. This set of plugins adds audio and video recording functionality to Moodle (one of the LMS solutions that eThink provides) and comes with a range of useful widgets to enhance Moodle activities. For more information about these plugins, visit Moodle.org. The Poodll team has also compiled a short list of “Remote Learning Recipes” on their website to help provide additional information for institutions and businesses moving their learning online.
Many institutions and organizations are now looking for options for synchronous web conferencing tools to create online classrooms. The two popular solutions we recommend for video conferencing tools are BigBlueButton and Zoom.
BigBlueButton is an open–source web conferencing system that supports real-time sharing of slides (including a white board), audio, video, chat, breakout rooms and more. It is available as a plugin to your LMS.
Zoom, a cloud-based video conferencing solution, can be integrated with an LMS using the Zoom meeting plugin developed by UCLA or via an LTI. We typically recommend the plugin, however only the LTI is officially supported by Zoom.
Configuring the Zoom plugin requires a business or educational Zoom account. To configure the Zoom LTI within your LMS, you can complete the steps outlined in support articles from the Zoom team regarding installing and configuring LTI pro within your institution’s Zoom admin account.
(If you are an eThink client, you can reach out to our team with the API or LTI Key and Secret configured within your institution’s Zoom admin user account so we can set up the plugin or LTI for you. You can also find a guide for generating those API keys within Zoom here.)
Help Desk Resources
COVID-19-Related Course Content
Our content partner OpenSesame has curated a list of COVID-19 related courses that cover topics like:
- Managing remote teams
- Remote communications
- Anxiety & mental health
- Virus (COVID-19) prevention
These courses provide the most up-to-date information on the coronavirus in accordance with the CDC and the WHO. Courses are being updated frequently, and learners will receive these updates automatically, ensuring that they have access to the most current information available.
You can access these courses for free by registering here. Please use them to help your employees, customers, and partners reduce their exposure to and the spread of the virus.
GO1 Remote Working Pathway
GO1 has put together a Remote Working Pathway that you can find in the Totara Community. It’s free to make an account. The pathway has been designed to be relevant for all staff across a business – both managers and employees – to help raise awareness related to COVID-19.
Coursera Together: Free online learning & community resources
Coursera has published a collection of new, free resources, as well as a compilation of course collections, community discussions, and expert interviews that are relevant to the current climate. You can view the full list on their blog.
LinkedIn Learning Remote Working Series
LinkedIn Learning has curated a learning path of 16 modules about adjusting to changes in your work environment and how to effectively work remotely.
We recommend that all organizations using Moodle provide a resource course on your Moodle site as a communication and support hub for instructors during this transition to remote teaching and learning.
If you are an eThink client, eThink offers self-paced training courses to our clients and routinely updates these resources as new versions of Moodle are released. In addition to or in lieu of formal training related to COVID-19 closures, you may find it helpful to provide access to these courses to instructors as a resource for creating and managing their courses within Moodle.
eThink Academy also offers a variety of eLearning courses to eThink clients and non-clients alike that your team may find helpful during this time. The two courses being offered in the coming months are: Build a Better Moodle course and the Moodle Educator Certification Program. Both courses are great options for instructors and administrators looking to gain a deeper understanding of Moodle. We also offer bulk purchasing options for institutions looking to train large groups of instructors.
For individuals using Totara, we recommend leveraging the training modules available through Totara’s Academy for additional resources during this time. In order to access resources in the Totara Community, you will need to register for a free account.
Totara has also compiled an article filled with helpful tips and resources for transitioning to remote work and workplace learning.
Additionally, eThink CEO Brian Carlson recently wrote an article on LinkedIn exploring How to Build a Successful Remote Company Culture, which is also referenced within Totara’s article.
Check out one of our recent webinars specifically aimed at providing higher education institutions and companies with helpful strategies to assist with the transition to virtual learning.
Higher Education session
Check out the recording for Smoothing the Transition to Remote Instruction, which will delve into:
- Strategies for shifting from in-person courses to online instruction in higher education
- Support ideas to help faculty and students adjust to moving online quickly
- Tips on how to deliver engaging online course experiences
- Helpful eLearning trends and strategies for teaching and learning online
- How open-source Moodle can be customized with powerful integrations and high-level customer support to create a flexible learning solution
Workplace Learning session
In Creating a Sustainable Remote Workplace Learning Environment with Totara Learn we explore:
- How your organization can utilize flexible, digital workplace learning to stay productive and connected during times of emergency
- Addressing “What’s Next?” with tips for sustaining an engaging remote environment for your employees while working on your business continuity planning
- How Totara Learn can be leveraged to deliver organizational learning including compliance, onboarding, continued training, and more on a virtual platform
If you would like to learn more about any of the resources mentioned in this article or if you have any additional questions, please contact us. If you are an eThink client, you can reach out directly to the support team via ZenDesk.
Stay safe and well! – The eThink Team