3 High-Impact Openers for a High School eLearning Course

eLearning course
Online learning is not only popular for college courses, it’s an equally important part of high school learning. A critical part of developing an engaging eLearning course is to understand what motivates the learner; in this case it is the high school student.  We can describe a high school student’s learning profile using these 6 characteristics.

  • Critical thinker
  • Goal setter
  • Engages in self-reflection
  • Prefers active over passive learning
  • Highly curious thinker
  • Seeks connections

The first goal of the beginning of an eLearning course is to grab the learner’s attention. If the learner is initially hooked, it’s easier to keep their attention.  Here are 3 ways to trigger your high school student’s attention.


Download the infographic,

8 Factors that Lead to an Engaging eLearning Course

1. Increase interactivity in eLearning

To spark your student’s interest, incorporate interactive elements that will help them drive their learning. Instead of having a slide progress automatically, include a feature that will allow students to drag, drop, and hover. This will trigger your student to stay alert and involved in the lesson. The student will know that their input is needed to progress the lesson. Changing the interactivity throughout the lesson will also get their attention.

Learning is impactful when content is relevant and meaningful and students form strong connections to real world situations. Click To Tweet

Additionally, using tools like hovering also aids in chunking information. For example, instead of presenting information about an image in a paragraph, use chunks of information. These chunks can be revealed when the student hovers or clicks. You will capture the student’s attention as he or she moves across the screen. The student will be motivated to discover the information on their own.

Download this free article on how to create assessments for an eLearning course.

2. Include scenario-based tasks in online learning

Learning is impactful when content is relevant and meaningful and students form strong connections to real world situations. This is a powerful motivator to sustained engagement.  For example, starting a lesson with a real-world scenario will get your students’ attention.  Animations are another tool that can grab the student’s attention and immerse them into the scenario.

Instead of prompting students to read a scenario, include characters or items that pop up and speak. This will help the scenario feel more like a story. Scaffold the scenario through pop-up text. The pop-up text can give the students hints needed to solve the scenario.

3. Incorporate gamification in online learning

The third tool is to use gamification. Research from PLOS One in 2017 identified 1,017 studies on gamification. PLOS One found that gamification leads to increased engagement in online classes. Gamification uses elements of a game such as badges and points, and applies it to a non-game context. Gamification can help transform a passive learning experience into an active one.

Here are some important features to consider.

  • Leaderboards
  • Badges
  • Points
  • Levels

One way to add gamification into the beginning of an eLearning lesson is to introduce students to the badging system. You can show three different levels of badges and the points needed to reach each badge. Plan to break your assessment into smaller chunks. As the student finishes each assessment, they will be motivated to get more points. This will get your student to set a goal and work throughout the lesson to reach it.

Getting a student’s attention in the classroom or online does not have to be difficult. By using these three components at the beginning and throughout your eLearning course, you will sustain your student’s attention.

Who is A Pass?

A Pass Educational Group, LLC is an organization dedicated to the development of quality educational resources. We partner with publishers, K-12 schools, higher ed institutions, corporations, and other educational stakeholders to create custom quality content. Have questions?

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