Online Teaching Strategies – Best Practices

This post is provided by guest blogger, Kylie Mussay, graduate student at the University of St. Francis in Joliet, Il., MS in Training and Development.

Best practices in online learning are key to setting clear guidance for online learners. Hanover Research Council wrote an article on their definition of best practices in online instructional design. The Hanover Research Council outlines Pelz’s (2004) report that

indicates three main goals in online instructional design:

  • Social Presence
  • Cognitive Presence
  • Teaching Presence

Online instructors must create an instructional design that facilitates student engagement with the class and the instructor while disseminating material in an organized and simplified way. Additionally, the Hanover Research Council believes online teaching strategies best practices include writing clear and specific objectives, focusing on behavioral outcomes, and designing the course in a student-centered way.

This article is perfect for an instructor who is designing their first online course. The Hanover Research Council is an organization that provides credible, analytical research to its clients in education and business sectors. A new online instructor can use this article to develop a list of specific guidelines for developing and conducting an online course. It will also provide instructional designers specific best practices in designing and implementing online courses with the intention of keeping the course student centered and engaging. Any person looking to develop their first course or brush up on some best practices in online instructional design should browse this article for some great tips.


Hanover Research Council. (2009, July). Best practices in online teaching strategies. Hanover Research Council. Retrieved from:  Online-Teachin g-Strategies-Membership.pdf

Pelz, B. (2004, June). (My) three principles of effective online pedagogy. Journal of Asynchronous Learning Networks, 8 (3). :

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