It’s All About Increasing Learners’ Engagement in Courses and Programs

Mikel Amigot | IBL News

A measure to calibrate the success of a learning platform and an ongoing program is the progress of engagement. If engagement improves, then revenues go up and administrators, instructors, and students smile.

edX, for example, has seen an 11 % increase in their engagement rate in the last two years. Now it claims a 42 % engagement rate.

The question is what truly generates engagement in courses.  Three are three main factors, in our view:

  • Content quality along with the design of the course
  • Platform’s pedagogical technology and new features
  • Content marketing and SEO campaigns to allow learners to find their desired courses

Please examine the graphic above, captured from Studio, the authoring tool of the Open edX platform –which is open-source and free to install.

The third checkmark refers to a core technical and pedagogical characteristic of this platform: active learning.

The course content is presented through learning sequences: a set of interwoven videos, readings, discussions, wikis, collaborative and social media tools, exercises and materials with automatic assessments and instant feedback.

Students alternate between learning concepts and solving simple exercises to check their understanding.

As a best practice, edX recommends building diverse learning sequences, following researchers’ discoveries. “We recommend that 80% or more of your learning sequences or subsection include multiple content types (such as video, discussion, or problem)”.

Gently nudging students, tutoring them and setting and soft deadlines in the course is equally helpful.

Would you suggest additional engagement techniques?