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Module A ButtonTopic A1.1: The Online Journey Begins

Characteristics of an Effective Instructor
Just what does it take to be an effective instructor when your students are somewhere in cyberspace? To find the answer, we need to look at the characteristics of effective teaching, regardless of the medium. Wotruba and Wright (1975) identified the following six characteristics of an effective instructor:

1. Knowledge of and enthusiasm for the subject matter and teaching.
2. Good organization of subject matter and course.
3. Effective communication skills.
4. Positive attitude toward students.
5. Fairness in evaluation and grading.
6. Flexibility in approaches to teaching.

Further studies have recognized other essential characteristics of a teacher, such as sensitivity to student needs, a concern for their learning, and the ability to motivate. It should come as no surprise that these characteristics also influence the success of an online educator.

Go to the article prepared by the Rochester Institute of Technology, "Effective Teaching Techniques for Distance Learning," and see how your list compares to the characteristics posted there.


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