Which software solutions are best for interacting with your course participants?
Speaking in public, whether for a conference event or a learning course, requires capturing the short attention span of your audience. Nowadays, as online learning becomes a necessity in a COVID world, you can take advantage of online tools to hook your audience or connect with your course participants at a deeper level.
Luckily, there are numerous software solutions available to boost engagement and audience interaction. Whether you’re speaking via video or teaching using an asynchronous model, get the lowdown on software solutions and tools to boost your online course and engage your speaking audience below.
Video conference software solutions
If you’re speaking at an event or running your course live, you’ll need reliable video software. Zoom has become a firm favorite, but there are others that may work well for you.
- Zoom: Zoom is a classic choice. It’s got password protection, breakout rooms and solid connection even with numerous participants.
- Whereby: Whereby is a no-frills alternative. Just create a link and go — no downloads required. Screen share, branded meetings, recordings, and a chat board are just some of the key features.
- Adobe Connect: Adobe Connect is a robust platform for complex learning environments. You can use customized layouts, breakout rooms, and an engagement dashboard.
- Microsoft Teams: Microsoft Teams is task-oriented video software. It’s easy to share documents, save groups, and link with your calendar. It’s good for recurring courses with task-based learning.
- LearnCube: LearnCube is specifically designed for learning. It includes an interactive whiteboard, custom branding, easy media upload/download and recordings. It’s a simple, yet reliable software solution.
Depending on your event or course needs, some of these Zoom alternatives may be the right fit. In particular if you’re teaching creative skills, Adobe Connect may be best for you.
Tools to use during live courses
During your live speaking event or course, you’re sure to need some tools to boost your content and engagement. Live speeches can sometimes suffer slumping interest. These tools will help you regain the attention of your participants and ensure they’re actively engaged in your material.
- Wooclap: You can ask engaging multiple-choice questions, word clouds and competitions using Wooclap. Participants connect via phone (using web or SMS) and answer live.
- Kahoot: On Kahoot, you can make fun challenge-style learning games. This is an excellent way to engage students and review topics.
- Conceptboard: Conceptboard is a collaborative infinite whiteboard that lets you and participants work together on screen.
- Classkick: Classkick is great for monitoring work and giving feedback. With it, you can view all your students’ work in real time, making it easy to identify the right help and feedback.
- Wizer.me: Wizer.me helps create interactive worksheets. This tool is best for courses with assigned asynchronous work. The worksheets are beautiful and integrate with Google Classroom.
Try out these top tools to see if they help boost your online event or course. Finding useful new tools is often a matter of trial and error, so don’t be shy about testing them out. There’s also an amazing online learning toolkit published by Unicef you should check out.
Online learning platforms
Perhaps your course also includes asynchronous tasks and learning methods. If you’re a speaker, you may be new to this mode, but these tools make it easy. An online learning platform can accompany your event or course, and enrich your value as a speaker.
Often these platforms are designed for homework-like assignments, or asynchronous learning that can be completed (and corrected) at an individual’s pace. Some excellent options for online learning platforms include:
- Google Classroom: Intuitive and easy, Google Classroom is excellent for sharing resources, handing in work and managing progress. You can assign work and send updates all within your course “channel.”
- Schoology: Schoology is a tried-and-true learning platform. It’s got everything you need to create assignments and resources, open class forums, and manage grading.
- Tovuti: Tovuti is a top platform for managing coursework and learning. You can create assignments, update with media, open forums, and give feedback — all in one place.
- Edmodo: Edmodo is a learning platform that brings together classrooms through messages, class materials and accessible assignments. It’s getting a lot of attention in school districts, but is easily adaptable for any learning scenario.
- Canvas: Canvas is a learning platform preferred by universities. It’s got great integrations with other tools and has all the features needed to manage courses.
As you can see, these are all great options for managing the learning process. If your course takes place over weeks, months, or longer periods, these may be especially useful.
Course-building software solutions
Finally, if your course is self-directed and asynchronous, you may need course-building software to create the course and keep it running for your participants. These tools let speakers like you pre-record videos and design assignments to automate the course process. In this case, you can try out:
- Kajabi: Kajabi is a no-coding course builder that allows you to build subscriptions and digital products, integrate with your website, and get paid easily.
- Thinkific: Thinkific is another top course builder and membership site to share your know-how. Features include live lessons, assessments, progress tracking, community center, and easy ecommerce.
- Open edX: Open edX is a cutting-edge course builder for any type of learning, including self-paced or even degree programs. Founded by Harvard and MIT, this builder gives you access to the best course creation and management.
- Podia: Podia is a slick course manager for everything from webinars to memberships. It’s got robust build-in marketing features as well.
- Xperiencify: Xperiencify is a course builder focused on engaging participants. It helps you build courses with feel-good psychological triggers that boost engagement and course completion.
For speakers who want to record their expertise and sell it to participants online, course-building software is essential. These are our favorites, but you may also benefit from Adobe Captivate if you’re in the creative field. Moreover, there are other more traditional platform options available.
Ultimately, you can leverage your expertise as a speaker by using these software solutions and tools to increase participation and engagement — and ensure your course is as fantastic as it can be.
While you’re at it, software solutions are just one part of successfully creating and marketing online courses. You should also have a robust online presence with a website and social media channels. Start by choosing the perfect website builder software — and go from there!
About the author:
Hey, I’m Dale! I’ve helped hundreds of thousands of people just like you around the world learn how to create a website over at CreateAProWebsite.com. Whether you want to make a beautiful blog, portfolio, or business website, we’ve got you covered with our easy to follow guides and tutorials!
This was originally posted on SpeakerHub Skillcamp.