Building Your Online Course: a lesson Template

Download 37.39 Kb.
Size37.39 Kb.

Building Your Online Course: A Lesson Template

This lesson template will help you incorporate principles of instructional design which focuses on how adult learn best so that you can create an engaging and high-quality course ensuring students can succeed. If this is your first time creating a course in Seaport, it is recommended that you read this brief overview before creating your first lesson. You may also want to schedule a meeting with one of the instructional designers to help you get off to a good and quick start in your course development.
Similar to a classroom course that is made up of a series of units, modules, or chapters, a Seaport course is made up of a series of “lessons.” Course assignments (quizzes, papers, projects, discussion postings, etc.) are integrated throughout the lessons. **The arrangement of the lesson content and the variety of types of content and their delivery will affect how the learner engages with it.


A lesson is a unit of learning (typically a week long) for the student and can be named anything you want: module, unit, lesson. For example: Lesson 1: Introduction to Philosophy. Avoid naming lessons Week 1, Week 2, as lesson content may change due to book changes or if your course is copied over to another term with a different duration (from an 8-week course to a 16-week course for example).
Consider designing the first lesson to help students get started by giving them an overview or orientation of the course. You could include any of the following: an overview of the course, how to go through the course, what to expect, a welcome message, practice quiz on the syllabus, or how to get started. Suggested names for this lesson are: Getting Started, Course Overview, or Course Orientation.
Use the space below to make a list of the lessons that you will have in your course.
Lesson Name:

Lesson Start Date:

Lesson Content

Each lesson is divided up into four sections:
(1) Pre-Organizer, (2) Presentation, (3) Practice, (4) Summary.
The following is a list of suggested topics that could be used in each of the four sections of a lesson. The content of the topic could include text, images, links to a website (URLs), or links to a file in your Learning Objects library in the course (PDF, PowerPoint, Word, Excel). You can create one or more learning objects for a particular topic. It is recommended that you create a new learning object using the HTML editor. This allows you to enter text, insert images, link to website, upload files, etc.

Lesson Order and Start Date

FYI – In Seaport, lessons are ordered by date. If two or more lessons have the same date, they are ordered alphabetically. All lessons are available to students regardless of their Start Date.


Use the Pre-Organizer section to grab students’ attention and peak their interest. Motivate them by telling them why this lesson is important. Include prior knowledge so that students can integrate the new information into their existing knowledge base. Be positive and give them encouragement throughout the lesson.
Suggested topics are explained below. Use one or more of the suggested topics.




Give students a preview of what will be presented in the lesson.

Lesson Outcomes

List the outcomes or sub-goals for this particular lesson. These sub-goals should be components of the overall course Student Learning Outcomes. Keep in mind how the lesson outcomes will be measured and what assessment techniques will be used.

Study Tips

Provide the students with useful information and strategies that will help them be successful throughout this lesson. Provide students with any study tips that will help them for this particular lesson.


Determine students' prior knowledge of what is to be taught in this lesson. Measure students' prerequisite skills or entry behaviors. Present a set of preview questions to promote student interest in upcoming lesson content. Consider using polls, surveys, and quizzes.


Add anything else to the Pre-Organizer section that wasn’t covered in the previous topics such as:

  • Conduct a poll to ask students' opinion at the beginning of the lesson then ask the same question at the end. Note the changes, if any. Have a class discussion as to why their opinion changed or stayed the same.

  • Ask reflective questions to get the students started.

Sample text:

Preview: In this lesson you will….

Lesson Outcomes: After completing this lesson, you should be able to…

Study Tips: Use the following study tips to help you be more successful in this lesson:

Pre-Testing: Take the following short pre-test to find out how much you may already know about this lesson's material.


Use the Presentation section to present the lesson content to the students. Provide the students with a Reading Assignment (from the textbook) and/or a Lesson Lecture. List any Key Terms that the students will need to know for this lesson. Provide students with Examples or Resources related to the lesson and list Lesson FAQs.
Suggested topics are explained below. Use one or more of the suggested topics.



Reading Assignment

Assign the reading required for this lesson. The student may be directed to pages in the course text book, electronic texts, or a collection of articles.

Lesson Lecture

Provide the students with the content equivalent to what they would receive in a face-to-face course. Think about what you do as a classroom instructor that makes your class interesting and engaging for the students. Use text, images, audio, and video to hold the students' attention, provide lesson content, and address the various learning styles of the students.

Digital Slide Show

Provide a PowerPoint presentation or something similar. Include when, why, and how the student should view the material.

Key Terms

List any key terms that the students will need to know for this lesson. You may want to include the key terms from the text book and other required readings.


Provide students with worked out examples or solutions to problems. Examples could include:

  • text explanations

  • images, graphs, photos, screen shots,

  • audio clips (with transcripts)

  • videos (with captioning)

  • simulations or tutorials


Direct the student to outside sources where they can obtain additional information related to this lesson. List resources that will reinforce student learning based on the lesson outcomes and encourage students to increase their learning. Resources could include:

  • Web sites - list the Web address (URL) and a short description for each link.

  • People to contact or interview.

  • Library books, magazines and newspapers.

For information about what is available in the Coastline Virtual Library, contact the librarian, Cheryl Stewart or go to

Lesson FAQs

Answer questions students frequently ask for this particular lesson. When teaching this lesson, what questions do students always seem to ask? Provide succinct answers and include references to the text book or other lesson materials.

Questions & Answers

Provide students with a way to ask questions related to this lesson. You may want to refer students to a particular topic in the Discussion Forum.


Add anything else to the lesson Presentation section that was not covered in the above topics.

Sample text:

Reading Assignment: For this lesson, you will need to read the following:

Digital Slide Show: After completing the reading assignment for this lesson, view the following PowerPoint file: As you go through the slides, pay close attention to …… You may want to make notes on the slides to help you remember ….

Key Terms: As you go through this lesson, pay special attention to the following key terms and definitions.

Examples: Here is an example of one possible solution to…

Resources: For additional information, use the following resources:

Web Links: Below are some links to great websites that….. Once you get to the website, be sure to look at …..

Lesson FAQs: Below are some frequently asked questions I’ve received from students that you might find helpful.

Questions & Answers: If you have any questions about this lesson, go to the Discussion Forum. Find the title of the lesson and post your question under that topic.


Use the Practice section to provide students with various activities so that they can reinforce and put into practice their newfound knowledge. The Practice section should offer students adequate time on task to achieve the learning outcomes of the lesson. This section may also be used to assess and evaluate student competence. You might assign these activities for grade points or offer them as study opportunities. Be sure to provide a rubric for all graded assessments.

Suggested topics are explained below. Use one or more of the suggested topics.




Have students complete activities, exercises from the textbook, etc. to demonstrate they have achieved the lesson objectives.

Discussion Forum

Give students opportunities to interact with the instructor and each other (similar to the discussions that take place in a classroom environment). Students can put into practice what they have learned in this lesson, gain from the experience of their classmates, and benefit from instructor feedback. Set up topics in the forum to allow students to participate in class debates, discuss a particular case study, or respond to specific questions.

The following should be included (or included in the course syllabus).

  • Include guidelines on how students are to respond to each other's comments.

  • If students receive points for their participation, clarify evaluation criteria.

Individual Project

Assign projects that students are to complete individually (as opposed to the Group Project). Give students the opportunity to be creative and apply their new knowledge of the subject matter. The output of the individual project could take the following forms:

  • Word documents or other file types submitted in the dropbox.

  • Postings in the discussion board

  • Outside tools such as Google Drive, videos posted on YouTube, wikis, blogs, etc.

Group Project

Use Group Projects to allow students to work collaboratively by assigning projects to small groups of students. Projects may consist of conducting research activities, responding to essay questions, answering questions in group forums, or any other activities that allow students to put into practice and apply their new knowledge or skill. The output of group projects could take the forms similar to the suggestions for the individual project (listed above).

Web Hunt

Allow students to conduct research on the Internet. Direct students in their search for websites or specific webpages related to a particular lesson topic. Web hunts give students the opportunity to read, review, and reflect on lesson content.

  • Help guide students to particular topics by giving them specific search criteria.

  • Send students on a scavenger hunt to collect information related to the lesson.

  • Students can share their findings to the rest of the class using the discussion board.

  • Consider giving students an example of an ideal Web Hunt.

Journal Exercises

Use the Journal tool in Seaport to assign a Journal activity to prompt students to write in their personal journal. Pose questions that will encourage the student to reflect on what they have learned in this lesson and how they are going to apply it.

Real-World Applications

Provide students the opportunity to transfer their learning to the real world.


Add anything else to the lesson Presentation section that was not covered in the above topics.


Use the Lesson Summary to review and summarize the main content of the lesson and bring the lesson to a close. Specify the main ideas that students should have received from the lesson. Point out lesson content that they will be using in future lessons.

Direct the students to What’s Next to keep them motivated as they move on to the next lesson.

Suggested topics are explained below. Use one or more of the suggested topics.



Review Checklist

Provide students with a study list to help them in their lesson review. Consider including the following:

  • List key points

  • Provide a study sheet for any quizzes

  • Reiterate lesson outcomes

  • List all the things the student should have completed in the lesson.

Practice Quiz

Allow students to measure their own learning.

Graded Quiz

Assess the student's mastery level in regards to the lesson objectives. Questions on the quiz should correspond directly to each lesson objective.

Pre-Exam Review

Help students prepare for the exam. Suggestions:

  • Conduct a live web conference for an online review session.

  • Archive the session so that it is available for later review and for students who couldn't attend the live session.

  • Create a video of a review session.

What’s Next

Provide a brief overview of what is coming up in the next lesson. Tie in what they did in the current lesson and tell them how this connects to the next lesson. This could be in the form of a “teaser,” commercial, questions, etc.


  • For students who want to know more about the lesson subject, provide Enrichment resources or activities. Suggested titles for the enrichment topic could be, “Want to Know More?” or “Explore on Your Own”.

  • Conduct an exit poll

  • Ask for student feedback (Survey Monkey). Use this information to improve your course.

  • Provide a glossary of key terms.

  • If a poll was used in the Preview section, pose the same question and compare the results.

  • Suggest activities for students to conduct on their own. Provide resources and encourage learners to further explore topics of interest.

Created by Sylvia Amito'elau,Edits M. Yanalunas 04.08.14 Coastline Community College

Download 37.39 Kb.

Share with your friends:

The database is protected by copyright © 2020
send message

    Main page