Tag Archives: teaching tips for online course instructors

Effectively Teaching an Excel for Accounting Course

By Eric Weinstein, author of Labyrinth Learning’s Excel for Accounting and Payroll Accounting

Continue reading Effectively Teaching an Excel for Accounting Course

Helpful Strategies for Using Whole Class Feedback

whole class feedback
Source: Wikimedia Commons

Most will agree that giving feedback to your students is best done in a one-on-one setting. This allows the student to receive helpful feedback directly and gives him or her a chance to ask you questions. However, this doesn’t mean that there isn’t a place for using whole class feedback.

Whole class feedback is when you address the class as a whole and give them feedback as a whole. For example, after handing back graded tests, you can discuss the performance of the class in its entirety. This type of feedback can be quite effective, and it’s a method that is used more than you probably realize. Speaking to each student one-on-one might be more effective, but using whole class feedback has its own benefits. It’s much more efficient to speak to an entire class for ten minutes regarding their performance than it is to speak to each student individually.

When providing whole class feedback, the last thing you should do is lecture your students on the problem they are having. You don’t want to come across as a parent scolding them. Instead, center your feedback around future-focused discussions. Tell your class what they should do next time based on their previous performance. You can even provide goals for the class to reach as a whole.

Don’t shy away from using whole class feedback. For additional advice and information on teaching a classroom of students, be sure to contact us at Labyrinth Learning today.

How Often Should Professors Lecture in the Classroom?

how often should teachers lecture in class
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When it comes to teaching a classroom of students, making sure that you have their attention is incredibly important. This means that you should vary your lesson plan a little bit instead of having lectures every single class. However, lectures are still very important, so how often should teachers lecture in class?

Deciding whether you should give your students a lecture is largely dependent on the content you are trying to get across. You don’t want to rely solely on lectures, and you certainly don’t want to repeat what your students are reading and learning on their own – this is simply regurgitating the material and making them more dependent on you instead of their own study habits.

There are a lot of things to consider. For example, maybe you know that the students will have trouble with particular content from past experience, which means a lecture can help make the content more clear to them. Maybe the lecture helps set the foundation and context of the content, thereby giving the students a chance to deal with the content from a place that is expediting their understanding.

When you do decide to give a lecture, make sure that you connect with your students. Ask questions that are intriguing and get your students thinking. Add anecdotes to make the content more entertaining. Don’t just paraphrase from the textbook.

How often should teachers lecture? That depends on the content and your experience. Contact us at Labyrinth Learning for additional teaching tips.

Use Animations in Microsoft PowerPoint to Enhance Your Teaching

Many students learn by watching and viewing rather than just writing and listening. One of the best ways to enhance student learning is by using animations in Microsoft PowerPoint during your presentations. If you’re not used to using animations in Microsoft PowerPoint, it may take you a little time to adapt. Here’s are a few key factors to keep in mind as you get used to this new style of teaching.

using animations in Microsoft PowerPoint
Source: Wikimedia Commons

There are two different types of animations in PowerPoint:

  • Preset Animation Schemes already control the way that all of the content comes into the slide. All you have to do is add your content, and it will follow the preset scheme.
  • Custom Animations let you apply a different animation scheme to each individual item on a slide. This is the more common choice among PowerPoint users, since it gives you more control.

Common animation schemes that you may find useful during your lectures include:

  • Setting animations that allow one bullet point to be added to the slide at a time. This will keep students’ focus on the point you are currently addressing.
  • Add arrows and other marks to a slide as you explain a complex process or flow-chart type illustration.

For more ways to utilize software to enhance student learning, contact us at Labyrinth Learning today to learn more about our programs that benefit both students and their instructors.

Join the Labyrinth Learning Editing Team

Labyrinth Learning editing team
Source: FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Interested in joining our Labyrinth Learning editing team? Currently we are accepting resumes for: Technical Reviewers, Quality Assurance Testers, Proofreaders, Copyeditors and Instructor Support Material Authors. These positions are as-needed temporary assignments with financial compensation based on the number of estimated pages per hour. We generally provide the necessary subject software but all other tools and materials will be the responsibility of the independent contractor.

  • Technical Reviewer-Ultimately responsible for ensuring the manuscript is logical and accurate, the best candidate will be familiar with the overall subject matter and most effective teaching practices.
  • Quality Assurance Tester-This position does not include editorial responsibilities. A QA tester’s primary function will be to completely work through each exercise to guarantee every step is correct and in logical order. Precise attention to detail is vitally important for a QA tester.
  • Proofreader-A major component of the Labyrinth Learning editing team is our proofreader. They are responsible for reviewing each manuscript page to ensure correct placement of all required elements.
  • Copyeditor-We are seeking a detailed-oriented individual for our Copyeditor position. He or she will be tasked with reviewing each lesson for grammatical correctness, proper punctuation and accepted formatting.
  • Instructor Support Material Author-Our ISM Authors are responsible for creating new or updating existing support materials including PowerPoint presentations, test questions and assessment exercises.

To apply for any of the above positions please email a short cover letter along with your current CV or resume to [email protected]. In the subject line, include the position you are interested in.

How Our Accounting Basics Solution Facilitates Learning

accounting solutions
Accounting Basics from Labyrinth Learning

When teaching accounting courses, financial information must be conveyed in a clear and concise manner. Here at Labyrinth Learning, our Accounting Basics solution offers an easily understood introduction for students who wish to gain general accounting knowledge but may not be working toward an accounting degree.

Often students want accounting basics to utilize as part of their job, for personal finances or to be able to understand the importance of accounting  while taking a course like QuickBooks.  While things like cash flow and payroll accounting are the responsibility of the accounting department, it is valuable to all to be able to read a ledger sheet, track business performance, and understand the basics of profit and loss.

Labyrinth Learning provides this new basic accounting solution.  It begins with a comprehensive overview. This particular program introduces a fictional business and the accounting cycle they follow. Each new topic also includes detailed explanations so each student understands how the process works.

This is solution provides practical and easy to understand accounting basics, along with practice sets at the end of each chapter, an ongoing end of chapter problem which builds off the previous obstacle, and a scenario at the end of the course allowing students to put their recently gained knowledge to use.

For more information about our Accounting Basics textbook along with our many other interactive teaching tools, please contact us at Labyrinth Learning today.


Using eBooks to Prepare Students for College

Source: freedigitalphotos

Although learning in a classroom environment is the strongest foundation for students, eBooks are a great way to supplement their education. Not only are they beneficial for teachers, but they are a great way to prepare students for college.

Here is detailed list on how teaching with eBooks can be beneficial for students about to head into college:

  • Preparing for the use of technology – Students will most likely be introduced to new uses of technology for their education in college. eBooks are a great way for them to acclimate to the use of technology for studying.
  • Improve problem-solving skills – Students that use eBooks enough will most likely run into a few glitches like they would with any technology. Learning to face and handle such problems is a valuable experience.
  • Learning to try new things – Using eBooks for the first time will take students out of their comfort zones, an experience they should become accustomed to if they are to learn to try new things in life.
  • Learning to collaborate – Many eBook platforms allow students to interact and collaborate within the text. This type of collaboration is a great learning experience, especially for students planning on taking online courses.
  • Learn to think outside the box – Using eBooks is a way for students to learn in a nontraditional manner forcing them to think for themselves without the help of an instructor.

Teaching with eBooks is a great way to prepare students for college. For more information, contact us at Labyrinth Learning today.

How Technology Is Changing the Higher Education Experience

How Technology Is Changing the Higher Education Experience

How Technology Is Changing the Higher Education ExperienceThe introduction of Massive Open Online Courses (MOOCs) within the last several years has already begun to revolutionize higher education. Yet, among many educators, there is an ongoing battle concerning the integration of  technology in higher education versus a traditional classroom setting.

Due to the popularity of MOOCs, symposiums are being held all across the nation to discuss the viability of online learning as it relates to accessibility. MOOCs are now affording groundbreaking opportunities to people from all demographics, who are simply looking for easier ways to access higher education.

Stanford University has been at the forefront of testing and experimenting with technology in higher education. Because digital educational delivery mechanisms include the capacity to track, store and measure the effectiveness of MOOCs, Stanford began offering certain online courses and then analyzed the data amassed.

The ability to determine what sections of a classroom lecture were being repeated by the majority of participants alerted educators to review that segment and to conclude what, if any, changes needed to be implemented. Online courses require exact precision from both student and educator, realizing attention to detail must be paid and that gray areas can not be tolerated.

Other challenges detailed by the Stanford study are the ability to keep students engaged through online interpersonal communication. This include research on how to make this teaching method viable for smaller colleges with limited technology budgets.

Labyrinth Learning is here to keep you in the know on all the latest higher education technology. Please contact us today for more information.

Image Source: freedigitalphotos

Lecture Hall

Tips New Professors Can Use in the Lecture Hall

Lecture Hall
Source: Wikimedia Commons

Are you new to teaching college courses and lectures? Teaching at the college level can be very rewarding and more than a little daunting. Here are some tips for new professors when standing up in front of a lecture room full of students for the first time.

1. It’s OK to be nervous- Standing in front a room of people is always a bit nerve racking, but above all else you must exude confidence! Students need to know that you are an expert in your field, especially during the beginning of a semester.

2. Innovate- Sitting for two hours and listening to a lecture can be less than entertaining.  More and more professors are implementing multimedia into lectures. Video, for example, will continue to play an important role in education.

3. Don’t over-prepare– Spending to much time preparing for a lesson may overwhelm you when the school year rolls around. Prepare your course outline and learning expectations early, develop an assessment standard, and take it one step at a time.

4. Be honest- If you don’t know the answer to a question, don’t fuddle an answer. Instead, just say, “Let me get back to you.” You don’t want to lose credibility by giving a false answer.

Above all else make the lecture fun! Get creative in your lesson plans and make use of all resources available to you.

To find more tips for new professors and other resources, contact us at Labyrinth Learning to see how we can help you prepare for the school year.