John Mitchell, the Chairman of the Department of Science at the Lincoln High School in Harrison in CountyWest Virginia, faced a challenge. He had 125 classroom students and over 700 21st century students from around the world. Teaching them using conventional methods was not an easy task.
He needed a mechanism for these students to visit his science website and take tests. After searching for a while, John finally realized that using software for online teaching was the best bet to make his job easier and save him hours of hard work that he would otherwise spend in designing tests, distributing them, and then grading them.
Using software for online teaching, he could automate the process, which earlier used to take him over 5 hours to complete.
Not only this, the software helped him to tackle other challenges that teachers usually face in their line of work. Well, lucky for John!
We know how hard being a teacher is. Whether it is elementary education or higher education, teaching has challenges at every step of the way.
But the good news is that most of the time adopting the best online teaching software can help.
What Is Online Teaching Software?
An online teaching software is a web-based teaching tool that aims to reduce teachers’ administrative burden and help them complete their coursework quickly & more efficiently.
How Does Using Online Teaching Software Benefit Teachers?
Online teaching software offers numerous benefits to teachers. Here are the most significant ones:
- It allows for better learning through enhanced capabilities. It lets teachers use different question types in assessments that address different learning styles.
- With such software, teaching and learning can take place almost everywhere, as teachers and students can access the quizzes or tests from any place using mobile devices like smartphones or laptops.
- It reduces teachers’ burden by providing features, such as automated grading, instant feedback, auto-generated reports, and security configurations. Most of their repetitive and time-consuming tasks are taken care of by the software.
- The online teaching platform widens reach and access, allowing users to participate easily, especially those teachers and students who tutor/study from home.
- It makes sharing information easier, and this can be seen as the most basic and most important use of these tools. Since it facilitates access to and sharing of resources in a digital format, accessing material from digital libraries, social networking sites, and search engines becomes easier.
Now, let’s circle back to our primary concern- the challenges faced by teachers and how best online teaching software can help overcome them.
Watch: How to Use Online Quiz Maker for Teachers?
What Are the Challenges That Teachers Face and How Does an Online Teaching Tool Help?
Teachers have to face a new challenge every day. It doesn’t matter if they’re starting new or have taught for decades; teachers are expected to tackle the challenges in a way that does not impact the overall learning experience of their students.
Often coming up with a solution takes time and can cause stress. But, with a blend of technology and the best practices, it can look easier than it ever did.
Here’s a list of some of the most common challenges faced by teachers and the solutions provided by the best online teaching software to tackle those challenges. Let’s take a look.
#1 Challenge: Making Learning Fun
Most problems faced by a teacher during instruction are in the form of:
- Lack of student engagement
- Lack of participation by students
- Less knowledge retention
For better student engagement and knowledge retention, a teacher must have the right tools for online teaching, which make the students avoid skipping classes, cover all topics, gamify learning, and more.
With quiz software, teachers can create engaging quizzes to make learning fun. Creating fun quizzes will have students looking forward to more fun & gamified learning, which is a great way of boosting participation.
They can make the entire process of learning with quizzes engaging by:
- Using images & videos to make the quizzes interesting
- Adding hints to the questions for the correct answers or explanations for correct answers
- Allowing performance comparison on the leaderboard
- Giving customized quiz certificates to the learners once they’ve completed a quiz
For example, teachers can add images or videos within questions or answer options while adding questions in a quiz. Various studies have shown that people tend to remember a piece of information better and longer if they involve images.
This matching question is a great example of an image-based question. It has images of images of Wonders of the World instead of their names.
Adding images will not only boost retention but also make the learning process interesting. Not only that, with quiz software, teachers can create customized quiz completion certificates with students’ scores to boost their morale.
#2 Challenge: Building Assessments to Identify Knowledge Gaps
The next big task for a teacher is to identify knowledge gaps. Ask any teacher today, and they will tell you that this task takes up most of their time.
They have to devote many hours outside of their working schedule only to design test papers and distribute them weekly, monthly, and quarterly.
Using the best quiz maker software to create quizzes or tests and assigning them to their learners is a great way to identify knowledge gaps. Teachers can create formative assessments to see how much their learners already know about a topic or summative assessments to assess knowledge retention from a topic they’ve taught their learners.
They can also access auto-generated reports to identify knowledge gaps.
Tests or short quizzes created with online test generators automatically produce a detailed report of all the learners’ activities and performance. Teachers can access these reports to access all the details like the number of correct and incorrect answers, time spent in answering a question, total time spent in completing the test, questions that were skipped, etc.
They can compare the reports of formative and summative assessments to see how far their learners have come in terms of their learning and how much they’re yet to learn.
Also, when a test is conducted online, teachers don’t even need to have the tests invigilated physically.
All it takes is to configure the security settings, and the rest is taken care of. They can prevent cheating by randomizing questions, shuffling answer options, and creating private links.
With these settings in place, the learners are unable to cheat, and hence the reports are genuine.
#3 Challenge: Assigning Scores & Feedback
Grading each answer and providing feedback is probably the most time-consuming task for teachers.
They need to provide comments on the strengths and weaknesses of each learner and ensure that learning takes place. The most common problem areas in the assessment include:
- Heaps of tests papers to grade
- Writing feedback for each test paper
- Making sure the test papers don’t leak
A test or assessment built through the best online assessment software will allow teachers to create dynamic feedback depending on the answer given to a specific question.
Teachers can save hours of grading & writing individual feedback by assigning automated scores and grades for correct answers while creating the tests or quizzes. Automating scores & grades can save the teachers from grading each test or quiz individually. Teachers can even create prompt feedback that’ll display when the students complete answering a question.
When results are automatically and instantly calculated and communicated to both instructor and students, it becomes easier for teachers to review results in real-time for meaningful analysis.
#4 Challenge: Measuring & Comparing Teaching & Effectiveness
Apart from spending too much time creating assessments, teachers also spend a lot of their time preparing reports & statistics. In addition to preparing individual reports, teachers also have to:
- Compare scores with previous papers
- Analyze results
Teachers can easily monitor learner progress and analyze results by automating reports & stats for online tests & stats in an online assessment software.
This way, it becomes easier to review detailed individual learner reports, including the date the test was taken, how long it took learners to complete it, their scores, a link to their scored reports with our online test creator.
Teachers can also view stats, such as the number of questions answered correctly, the average percentage score, the minimum score needed to pass, question difficulty level, etc. They can even download these reports in SCD, MS-Excel, or text formats using an online test creator.
#5 Challenge: Working on Improving Instructions
Every student has a different pace of learning and grasping the instruction. Applying a fixed curriculum to students with vastly different needs can badly impact teaching effectiveness.
For example, in a geography test, student A might score ten on ten while student B might score five on ten. It points out the difference in their learning capacity and knowledge retention.
Adapting lessons to students and tailoring instructions to their needs take time if the students having the same scores are grouped and assigned the same set of instructions.
So broadly, the problems are:
- Grouping students based on different scores
- Assigning reframed instructions to students
One of the solutions to tackle these challenges is adopting the software for online teaching or quizzes to assess students & measure learning effectiveness.
The availability of software for online teaching only makes creating quizzes quicker & easier.
They’d also help ensure that students understand what you’re teaching and, in case they don’t understand, where your teaching has missed the mark.
With online teaching tools, teachers can create online classrooms where they can create different groups of students and assign them quizzes & courses in a centralized manner. Once logged in, they can see all the quizzes or courses they need students to take.
They can also see what students have completed in the past, including accessing their past scores, certificates, etc.
A quick read of the real accounts of teachers who adopted various software for online teaching & learning is the best way to understand their benefits. Find them in our next section.
Let us present a few cases where teachers and instructors sought help from online teaching resources when faced with challenges.
1. Ringling College of Art & Design
2. Sequoia Middle School
3. Franklin County Community School Corporation
Now, take a look at how such a software works to make tasks easier for teachers.
How Does Teaching Software Work to Help Teachers?
To keep it simple, let’s understand this with an example of ProProfs Online Teaching Software, one of the best software for online teaching.
1. Creates Assessments in Minutes
Creating student assessments is one of the most stressful tasks for a teacher. They have to create a format, choose the right questions, and assign adequate time and scores for each question.
A good teaching software lets teachers build online tests and exams in minutes with tons of ready-to-use templates and ready-to-use questions. Teachers can use quizzes and questions as they are or edit them based on their requirements.
2. Automates Grading Process
Just like creating assessments, grading them is another stressful task for teachers. They spend hours carefully grading the answers and constructing feedback.
However, with automated grading and instant feedback features, online quiz software helps teachers save hours of their time & effort that they’d spend on grading questions manually. Pre-assigning grades and scores to questions allows the system to automatically grade questions when attempted.
3. Generates Detailed Reports
Manually preparing a report is hectic and often misses out on useful insights crucial for evaluation.
A test generator, or exam maker automatically generates detailed reports for all the tests attempted by students. AI-powered reports include details such as the total number of attempts, individual scores, time taken to finish the quiz, the hardest and easiest questions, and more.
a) Recent Activity Report
b) Advanced Progress Report
c) Grade Book Report
All these reports provide valuable insights that help teachers identify knowledge gaps and prepare students’ instructions better.
4. Helps Prevent Cheating
One of the major challenges while assessing students is to prevent cheating on online tests or exams. It is a major concern, especially when the teachers are conducting assessments remotely.
In a non-invigilated setting, there’s a possibility of copying answers or looking up answers on the internet. But, when using a an online software for teaching, you can configure settings to prevent such steps in the following ways:
- You can randomize the order of questions so everyone gets a different set
- Shuffle answer options so it becomes difficult to copy answers, and
- Disable tab switching so answers can’t be looked up.
Configuring these settings is a good way to ensure students don’t cheat in a non-invigilated learning environment.
5. Lets you Quiz Anytime, Anywhere
The assessments created with an online quiz maker for teachers are mobile-friendly and perfectly fit the screen size of smartphones and tablets. Teachers can create a quiz or tests as a link via email or even embed them on a website.
This way, the students can take the tests or quizzes within the specified time or anytime, anywhere, and teachers get real-time reports as students attempt them.
With this, we’ve reached the end of our article.
If you’re a teacher, we’re sure you’ll agree with all the challenges mentioned in this article. But you know you’re just a software away from tackling those challenges.
Apart from ProProfs, here’s a list of the 10 best tools for online teaching that you can look up and choose from.
Teaching is indeed a challenging role, with teachers playing the role of a mentor, educator, friend, examiner, etc. These challenges arise from many directions- students, administrators, and parents.
But at the end of the day, the teacher needs to find a solution and take these challenges head-on while sticking to their roles & responsibilities. For them, adopting an online teaching tool is the best way out.
The best online teaching platform can easily save hours of effort & tons of time, automate most tasks, and leave little to no room for cheating to create the right learning experience.
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