Setting Virtual Classroom Etiquette for Students Carries Weight
With the increasing usage of virtual learning nowadays, many instructors and teachers around the world have started to explore ways to improve the quality of their online sessions. One of these mechanisms is to set a proper virtual classroom etiquette for students. Imagine that you are giving a very interacting and interesting virtual session and suddenly your cell phone rings. This is enough to spoil the environment that you have initiated from the beginning of the session.
In this article, Storkyapp gives you effective tips on how to establish the virtual etiquette.
Teachers and Students Should be Aware of the Virtual Environment
- Students should be wearing like they are going to class. They should be dressed in formal or semi-formal attire.
- Teachers should select an appropriate background for their virtual classroom. It should not be any sort of distraction. Also, instructors should not have a window behind them because strong light will make it hard for students to see through the screen.
- Both teachers and students should sit on a table or desk and their backs should be straight and not slouching. In a physical classroom, students do not sit on beds or sofas. Thus, they should act as if they are in a real classroom.
- Students should mute their microphones unless they are permitted to talk. They can just unmute when they answer a question or being called by instructors. If everyone is talking inside the virtual classroom, instructors may lose control over their virtual session.
- Students should be present. For example, you should not attend a virtual session while driving a car or watching a movie, or eating your lunch. It is not just about clicking “Join Meeting.” Students should not miss any information being presented to them by clicking on another tab or being distracted by anything on the internet as this may ruin the virtual session.
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The Fair Usage of the Chat Box in the Virtual Classroom
- A very effective way to increase engagement inside the virtual classroom is to allow students to use the chat room. They can ask or answer questions without interrupting the session. Instructors can also confirm students’ engagement using this way.
- If you really wish to rock your virtual classroom, you have to use the chat room option. There are many different ways in which chat rooms can help enhance the quality of the virtual session:
- Instructors can allow two students to use the private chat (which means that no one else can see their conversation) to discuss a topic and share their ideas and challenges about handling a specific situation and then they can share their point of views with the rest of the group.
- Instructors can share a survey link on the chat box for their students to answer.
- Instructors can also use the chat room for brainstorming and allow students to share their ideas.
- They can share key quotes that support their topics of discussion in the chat room, or send an outline of what will be discussed during the session.
- A brilliant idea that educationworld.com has come up with in an article titled “Online Chat: Ideas for Classroom Use” should be mentioned. The idea is to invite a guest to the chat room who is an expert in the topic of discussion to share his knowledge with the students at a designated time. Students will be very excited to ask him/her questions and benefit from his/her experience.
Instructors Should Use a Respectful Tone in the Virtual Classroom
Certainly, tone matters very much when you start to communicate with your students. Please consider the following tips when talking to your students in an online session:
- Instructors/teachers should choose their tone of voice when communicating online. Indeed, students vary in the way they perceive your words. Thus, you have to carefully select your words. Furthermore, you have to proofread your sentence structure and punctuation.
- A teacher can hit two birds with one stone by selecting a tone that appeals to students and at the same time maintain his/her leadership role. This is the biggest challenge about teaching in general. Students should be willing to come to your class because they like you and respect you at the same time.
Educationworld.com mentioned the following in an article titled “Setting the Tone:”
“Your tone of voice sends a clear message to students. When going over expectations, procedures, and other important classroom information, use a firm steady tone. Firm does not mean loud. Your tone, however, should be clear and confident.”
Managing Students’ Behavior in the Online Session
The following guidelines should be set clear to students before the beginning of the course:
- Students should mute/unmute their microphones only by permission.
- Students should keep the formality in selecting a proper title for their instructors the same way as they do in the conventional classroom.
- They should respect the opinions of their colleagues when they are in a chat discussion or a breakout room.
- When using the chat option, students should avoid talking about personal issues and keep their discussion only to the topic at hand.
- Students should be careful when they submit their assignments. In other words, they should be careful not to miss any attachments and avoid writing all letters in block capitals as this means that they are shouting and not respecting their teachers.