Welcome to the Learning, Teaching, and Innovative Technologies Center!

Located in the James E Walker Library, Room 348

Teaching Tips - Engaging Online Activities


The following information was adapted from the book The Online Learning Idea Book: 95 Proven Ways to Enhance Technology-Based and Blended Learning written by Patti Shank. (Available in the LT&ITC library.)

Engaging Online Activities

"Engaged learning stimulates learners to actively participate in the learning situation, thus gain the most knowledge from being a member of an online learning community"; (Conrad, 2004, p. 79).

There are numerous activities that can be incorporated into the Online learning environment and one of interest is the MiniQuest. A MiniQuest is an online activity that uses a scenario, a task, and instructor-selected web sites to produce a product. This activity promotes critical thinking skills and is relatively easy to design.

In Shank's book The Online Learning Idea Book, she outlines the steps in creating a MiniQuest which are explained below.

  1. Construct a scenario for the exercise that places the student in an authentic role. The scenario should incorporate critical thinking skills and a course of action or decision. It should establish the question or quest.
  2. Write a structured task that directs students to specific web sites. Provide questions that will help direct them to information pertaining to the question or quest.
  3. Describe the final product to be produced. The product should match the role given in the scenario and provide an answer to the question or quest. Some possible products include:
    1. Reflective paper
    2. Essay
    3. Plan of action
    4. PowerPoint presentation
    5. Model of something
    6. Podcast
    7. Blog
    8. Debate

For examples of a MiniQuest, contact the center by calling (615) 494-7671 or by sending an e-mail to ltanditc@mtsu.edu. The book The Online Learning Idea Book: 95 Proven Ways to Enhance Technology-Based and Blended Learning contains an example of a MiniQuest and is available for check out.

BIBLIOGRAPHY

1. Shank, Patti, The Online Learning Idea Book: 95 Proven Ways to Enhance Technology-Based and Blended Learning, Pfeiffer, San Francisco, CA, 2007.

2. Conrad, Rita-Marie, and Donaldson, J. Ana, Engaging the Online Learner: Activities and Resources for Creative Instruction, 2004.