Engaging students fully in college experiences contributes to meaningful learning and personal development. Student engagement includes connecting with instructors, with course content, with individuals and groups of peers, with the campus community, with their own sense of wellness, with civics, and with many other opportunities for growth.
The following resources have been curated by educational developers, instructional designers, and student support services personnel and were reviewed by faculty throughout the University. They are offered in the spirit of supporting instructors who aim to engage students in making the most of their education. Resources are organized in the following categories of engagement:
- Office hours
- Study groups
- Wellness opportunities
- Policies, Guidelines, and Recommendations
- Frequently Asked Questions
Engaging Students during Class
Teaching during a pandemic makes engaging students in class challenging. Here, we offer our top-five resources to provide ideas about connecting students with you, with your course content, and with their peers in your courses.
- Engaging Students from Day One
Sections from the Flexible Instruction Teaching Guide about engaging students
- Media Commons Resources for Faculty
A wide range of media-based assignments and support for students and faculty, with a section specific to “How Media Projects Impact Learning”
- Strategies for Creating Engaging Synchronous and Asynchronous Learning Environments
Strategies curated from across the University for engaging students in all remote delivery modes
- Zoom: Questioning Strategies to Increase Engagement
A table aligning Zoom tools (chat, polls, whiteboard, and more) with strategies for engaging students with content and with each other
- LinkedIn Learning
These resources are for those who prefer a directed and structured learning experience, offering a deeper dive into the resources. Be sure to authenticate through Penn State for free access to resources.
- Learning How to Increase Learner Engagement (42 min)
- Flipping the Classroom (42 min)
- Learning to Teach Online (46 min)
- Teaching Techniques: Blended Learning (1 hour 37 min)
- Teaching Online: Synchronous Classes (1 hour, 12 min)
Engaging Students during Office Hours
Share with Students
Guidance for Using Office Hours
Tips instructors can provide to students regarding what to speak about, how to prepare, customary behaviors, Zoom suggestions, benefits, and more
Student attendance at office hours often seems elusive, even in normal instructional times. The good news is that students are seeking connections. Younger students, especially, want to know their instructors. Consult the following resources for enticing students to make use of this long-standing way to connect with instructors.
- Holding Virtual Office Hours
Suggestions for instructors regarding where to post office hours times, when to schedule, how to set the stage, and creative uses of office hours, from the Flexible Instruction Teaching Guide
- Office Hours: Guidance for Instructors (DOC)
Considerations for accommodating students in various time zones, enticing students to attend, and more
Engaging Students with Study Groups and Learning Resources
Share with Students
Suggestions for individual and group study, written for students at Penn State
Listing of resources for academic tutoring and learning support, academic advising, academic integrity, and more
Virtual Study Groups
Recommendations for creating virtual study groups
Students face unknowns and disruptions during a pandemic, making studying challenging. Refer to these resources for assisting students with learning.
- Virtual Study Groups: Guidance for Faculty (DOC)
A guide for faculty, highlighting the importance of student collaborative learning (especially during the pandemic) that includes study group considerations, technical how-to’s for setting up group spaces, and additional resources
Engaging Students in Pursuit of Wellness
Share with Students
Health and Wellness
Comprehensive listing of health and wellness resources for students
Instructors can play a critical role in connecting students to online tools and campus resources to support their health and wellness.
- Red Folder
Online resource guide for faculty and staff to help students in distress
- Student Care and Advocacy
Central office that coordinates efforts with campus partners to assist students who encounter challenges or concerns
- Email: email@example.com
- Share a Concern: Share a Concern form
- Phone: 814-863-2020 (voicemail)
Policies, Guidelines, and Recommendations
- Use of Webcams - Factors to consider regarding the use of webcams in courses offered through remote learning technologies.
Frequently Asked Questions
Review the following frequently asked questions about engaging students. For additional information, read all frequently asked questions.
Webinars designed to provide critical information to faculty and staff about engaging students.