Management of Large Classes
From e-Learning Documentation
Teaching a large class in e-Learning can present some challenges. Classes with more than 700 students enrolled may experience moderate to severe slowdown as the number of students increases. But there are certain tips that could make managing a large enrollment course more manageable.
Some tools work better than others in large enrollment classes.
- Gradebook 2 works better in large enrollment classes than does Gradebook
- Assessments works better in large enrollment classes than does Tests & Quizzes
- Blogs does not work well in large enrollment classes, even as few as 300 students (if they are posting often) can slow down the performance of this tool. As the number of students and posts increases, the Blog slows down dramatically. It is best to use an outside Blogging tool such as "Blogger."
One option for managing a very large class is to set up a Parent/Child scenario. Let's say that you are teaching ABC1234 with 30 sections. You have six TAs who will each be assisting with five sections. You can set up a "Parent" course that contains all content for the course - readings, lecture notes, lecture videos, etc. This is where students will go to view the content. You will want to remove any tools from the toolbar that are not going to be used in the Parent course so as not to confuse students.
There will be five "Child" courses, each one assigned to one of the TAs and only the rosters for that TA's sections are added to the Child course. In the Child course, students hand in their Assignments, take tests, participate in Discussions, etc. The Gradebook for these students is kept in the Child course. TAs manage only the students assigned to them without the ability to see the rest of the students.
While this scenario avoids many of the problems associated with a very large enrollment class, it does require Instructor/TA collaboration.
Information on how to set up the Parent/Child relationship can be found here.