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Driving Engagement in Virtual Courses

The challenges of teaching in a live virtual environment can be overcome using the tools provided in this complimentary online course from Esme Learning.

Course starts:

Available now


2-4 hours


Self-paced Online Learning





Course starts: Available now

Length: 2-4 hours

Effort: Self-paced Online Learning

Price: Complimentary

Language: English

About this Course

Delivering classes virtually can be a challenge. We created an easy quick-reference course to help. This course offers practical guidance about driving student engagement, implementing remote learning models, and designing lesson-planning templates for courses of various lengths.

In this self-paced, 2- to 4-hour online experience, you’ll learn both strategic and tactical techniques — from how to effectively organize your classroom instruction time, to how to develop social dynamics and a sense of collective responsibility in a virtual environment (whether videoconference based, like Zoom or Teams, or using a more sophisticated Learning Management System).

Co-taught by two online learning pioneers, Beth Porter and David Shrier, this course provides you with a unique classroom toolkit to help you succeed in the coming academic year.

Who is this for?

This course is designed for instructors and professors in secondary through higher education, or those in corporate learning who are tasked with teaching their courses in a live, virtual environment. For example:


  • Professors
  • Instructors
  • Corporate learning professionals
  • Teachers (Primary, Secondary)
  • Tutors
  • Teaching assistants

The course will help you...

  1. Re-evaluate your in-person lesson plans for a fully virtual environment, in concert with addressing the challenges students face and what they need to succeed online.
  2. Evaluate virtual communication strategies and how to create a virtual “presence” for yourself & your students.
  3. Understand virtual lesson-building strategies and evaluate readily available tools.
  4. Learn how to set up your home office for optimal audio & video quality.
  5. Review practical strategies for incorporating interactivity and group work, into your virtual class sessions.

What you will learn

This course is organized in the following five sections and learning objectives:

MODULE 1: Why Virtual Learning?

  • Introduction
  • Mindset Shift and the Benefits of Teaching Virtually
  • Building Engaging Virtual Courses

MODULE 2: Virtual Learning Health Check

  • Evaluate Your Experience
  • What Learners Need to Succeed
  • Goals for your Virtual Course

MODULE 3: Learning Models and Tools

  • Essential Virtual Teaching Techniques
  • Applying Bloom's Taxonomy to Virtual Lessons
  • Technical Tools and Best Practices
  • Creating a Story Map
  • Communication Strategies and Building a Virtual Rapport with Students

MODULE 4: Setting Yourself Up to Teach Online

  • Transforming Your Space for Video and Audio Lectures
  • Creating a Rapport with Students in Pre-Recorded Lectures

MODULE 5: Your Virtual Class Playbook

  • Developing Lessons and Course Organization
  • Incorporating Interactivity and Group Work
  • Assessment Strategies
  • Download Playbook
  • Conclusion

Who You'll Learn From

Our programme faculty brings together thought leaders from the University of Oxford with industry experts and successful entrepreneurs, to facilitate the rapid application of theory to practice.

David Shrier

Programme Director, Oxford Fintech
Saïd Business School, University of Oxford

David Shrier is a globally recognized authority on financial innovation, and has dual academic appointments at MIT and Saïd Business School, University of Oxford. In addition to Oxford Cyber Security for Business Leaders, he created and leads the Oxford Fintech and Oxford Blockchain Strategy programmes. David advises corporations and governments on innovation and applications of technologies such as AI, blockchain, big data, and cyber security systems. His books include New Solutions for Cybersecurity, Trusted Data, and Basic Blockchain.

Programme Instructor
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Programme Instructor
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Programme Instructor
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Meet Your Instructors

Beth Porter

Co-Founder and Managing Director, Esme Learning Solutions

Beth Porter is the Co-Founder of Esme Learning Solutions and Founder & CEO of Riff Analytics. A former VP at Pearson Education and edX, Beth’s highly sought-after expertise stems from a deep passion for education and desire to provide the highest quality tech-enabled learning experiences.

Beth has led pioneering research and developed products that transform online teaching and learning, including driving the Open edX initiative at edX and architecting the original Texas OnCourse program. Her engagements in higher education include researcher and lecturer at the MIT Media Lab and Boston University Questrom School of Business.

David Shrier

Co-Founder and Managing Director, Esme Learning Solutions

David is a globally recognized thought leader in technology and educational innovation. The portfolio of digital classes he created for MIT and University of Oxford have engaged more than 15,000 innovators in over 150 countries, and revolutionized the model for university short-course offerings.

He is an Associate Fellow with Saïd Business School, University of Oxford and a Lecturer with the MIT Media Lab.

David has published five books in the past five years focused on technology disruption, the three most recent of which with MIT Press or Little Brown.

More about Esme Learning

Esme Learning Solutions is a next-generation online education provider. Offering an outstanding virtual learning experience and unrivalled outcomes, Esme Learning uses AI-enabled knowledge acceleration combined with premium content from the world’s greatest thought leaders to build collective intelligence at scale.

A Certificate from a Top-Tier University

Upon successful completion of the course, you will earn a certificate from the Saïd Business School, University of Oxford.

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