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Author Topic: No online teaching experience - how do I start?  (Read 25274 times)
cenparis98
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« on: July 27, 2010, 11:59:00 AM »

Help!

I'm a very experienced teacher with a PhD in political science.  My wife's job is moving us all over the place so I thought online teaching would be a good option to supplement family income.  I'm a little overwhelmed by all of the information out there and I was hoping someone could provide some good advice as to how to get started with online teaching.  I have done some initial research but this is unlike any job search I have done in the past.  I need advice!

Thanks in advance.  Relevant professional details below:

Harvard PhD, 2003
Six years college teaching experience
Six years high school teaching experience
Currently located in Boston, but only for a year (after that, who knows?)

Thank you!

cenparis98

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jonesey
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« Reply #1 on: July 27, 2010, 1:00:54 PM »

Harvard PhD, 2003
Six years college teaching experience
Six years high school teaching experience
Currently located in Boston, but only for a year (after that, who knows?)

How are you not in a TT job with a Harvard PhD?  Are you one of those Cambridge folks who couldn't leave Boston and, thus, remain an adjunct (I've met many in my day)?  Boston is a great town, but sometimes you have to leave in order to get a permanent job. 
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cenparis98
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« Reply #2 on: July 27, 2010, 1:06:10 PM »

No, the problem is too much moving.  You do have to stay in one place to get a TT job.  But as it seems we don't stay in one place for too long, online is a good option. 
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neutralname
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« Reply #3 on: July 27, 2010, 1:06:48 PM »

How are you not in a TT job with a Harvard PhD?  Are you one of those Cambridge folks who couldn't leave Boston and, thus, remain an adjunct (I've met many in my day)?  Boston is a great town, but sometimes you have to leave in order to get a permanent job. 

Jonesey: I'm not sure why you think having a Harvard PhD guarantees a tt job, but it definitely does not.  Not even if you are willing to move to Wyoming. 

OP: what kind of online teaching are you thinking about?  Not U Phoenix, right? 

If there's a listserv for your discipline, I'd ask for advice on that.  I did this regarding a particular standard course, and got a number of very helpful replies back.  People gave me a guest name and password and let me see the courses they had set up.  There's nothing like having some examples to follow.
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cenparis98
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« Reply #4 on: July 27, 2010, 1:15:47 PM »

neutralname - you're definitely right that having a Harvard PhD doesn't guarantee a job in this market.  There's a glut of unemployed fancy PhD's out there.  It's not a pretty scene these days with all the hiring freezes.  Fortunately that's not exactly my problem.

My field is political science, but I have also taught history and philosophy.  I guess the best thing to do would be to find someone who is working online in one of these fields.  Maybe I should post a query to that effect.

Thanks! 
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jonesey
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« Reply #5 on: July 27, 2010, 2:28:31 PM »

My field is political science

This helps to explain the lack of a TT job.  Still, a Harvard PhD has to count for something, right (it's only the best university in the world, or one of them, anyway).  Government job, perhaps? 

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scampster
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« Reply #6 on: July 27, 2010, 3:19:31 PM »

My field is political science

This helps to explain the lack of a TT job.  Still, a Harvard PhD has to count for something, right (it's only the best university in the world, or one of them, anyway).  Government job, perhaps? 



Jonesey, I think the OPs dilemma is that his wife's job requires them to move a lot, so he can't take on a permanent position anywhere, except for online.
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neutralname
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« Reply #7 on: July 27, 2010, 3:24:43 PM »

My field is political science

This helps to explain the lack of a TT job.  Still, a Harvard PhD has to count for something, right (it's only the best university in the world, or one of them, anyway).  Government job, perhaps? 


It will help for some job applications but hinder for others.  Plenty of places would not seriously consider a Harvard PhD, for a variety of reasons.
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infopri
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« Reply #8 on: July 28, 2010, 10:27:14 PM »

Cenparis98, are you looking for advice on how to find a job teaching online, or on how to teach a course online?
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cenparis98
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« Reply #9 on: July 29, 2010, 11:20:45 AM »

infopri: What's the difference?  Do you mean teaching my own course vs. teaching a course designed by someone else?  I would be interested in doing either.  I've had success with both.   
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cenparis98
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« Reply #10 on: July 29, 2010, 11:22:27 AM »

btw, this seems like a very useful website for people interested in online teaching: onlineadjunctjobs.blogspot.com.  Just thought I would share.
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infopri
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« Reply #11 on: July 29, 2010, 11:30:31 AM »

infopri: What's the difference?  Do you mean teaching my own course vs. teaching a course designed by someone else?  I would be interested in doing either.  I've had success with both.   

In hopes that you're on the level and not a spammer:

No, that's not what I meant at all.  I was asking whether you were looking for help in finding a job teaching online, or for help in figuring out how to do the actual teaching (i.e., pedagogical techniques for facilitating learning in an online environment, to the extent that these techniques differ from those one might use in a physical classroom).
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People who do not understand numbers should not be allowed to use them for anything. - DvF

MYOB.  Y enseņen bien a sus hijos.
cenparis98
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« Reply #12 on: July 29, 2010, 12:14:46 PM »

Infopri: I'm trying to learn how one goes about getting a job teaching online courses.  The pedagogy I'm afraid will have to come with experience.  I run my high school courses through websites so I should be familiar with at least some aspects of what is entailed.  And I know people who do this, but they work in very different fields. - cenparis98
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infopri
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« Reply #13 on: July 29, 2010, 6:24:15 PM »

Infopri: I'm trying to learn how one goes about getting a job teaching online courses.  The pedagogy I'm afraid will have to come with experience.  I run my high school courses through websites so I should be familiar with at least some aspects of what is entailed.  And I know people who do this, but they work in very different fields. - cenparis98

Ah.  I could have helped you with the pedagogy, but not so much with the job hunting.  I teach online at my alma mater, but I taught there for years in the classroom, first, so I knew all the right people to get this job when it came open.  So the only advice I can give you--which may have limited utility, given the way you move around--is to work your network at any schools at which you have contacts.  Let them know you're available (and eager) to teach online, and hope something comes out of those conversations.

The other alternative, of course, is to approach one of the online universities--University of Phoenix, TUI University, etc.--but be aware that working there may negatively affect your ability to land a TT job elsewhere later on, depending on the attitudes in your field toward such places.
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MYOB.  Y enseņen bien a sus hijos.
cenparis98
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« Reply #14 on: July 30, 2010, 5:40:59 PM »

All the people I know who are teaching online courses had some prior connection to the university.  Not very encouraging in my case.  I've noticed that people generally speak very poorly of UPhoenix.  Is that because it's thought to be a diploma mill or for some other reason?  An online university might be a good option for someone in my situation, but there's no sense in my applying if the school is disreputable.  In any case I didn't see many courses in the liberal arts. 
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