Teach your online course your way

Written by Tom Gayner

You know stuff, right?

Maybe you even know so much stuff that you’re considering teaching other people this stuff. Hell, maybe you’ve already taught some people about the stuff you know.

The rollercoaster of the past couple of years has proven what a gift e-learning is to anyone with wisdom to impart or on a mission to absorb someone else’s wisdom. Thanks to remote learning and online courses, the days of IRL classrooms, shoebox-sized textbooks and haven’t-done-the-homework guilt are gone.

(Ok, that last one still exists, whether you’re on or offline.)

But not all online courses are made equal, and the way you run your course matters to your students.

Choose a learning management system (LMS) that is too inflexible, and you won’t be able to deliver the kind of content you want, when and how you want. Plus, if you choose an online course platform dedicated to hosting courses, such as Udemy, you suddenly have to funnel all of your hard-won community through their system.

On the other hand, there’s the tried and trusted (and free!) route of hosting your course materials and chatting to your students via a Facebook Group. But this is 2021, and increasingly people are choosing not to be on Facebook, perhaps because of privacy or corporate concerns, or perhaps just because, y’know, they’re Gen Z and FaceyB has just never been their thing.

The ideal situation is for you to be able to run the course in whatever way works for you and your students. If you’re teaching knitting, being able to host video lessons and send video clips is going to be incredibly helpful for your students. If you’re teaching creative writing, perhaps it’s more crucial that you can send writing prompt worksheets in advance of your lessons.

Levellr is designed to offer you total flexibility in how you teach, while also making sure that you’re in control of your lessons and students, not us.

Perhaps it’s time for a little case study?

Take Lily. She's a well known financial freedom vlogger. After several YouTube videos talking about her next course - How to save for a house deposit when you feel totally broke - she's had loads of comments from people asking how they can access the course. In her next video, she includes a link to her Telegram group, for anyone who wants to join in her first ever live course. Students sign up to her Telegram group for £50 each (Lilly has set the rate, and keeps 100% of the money using Levellr's tools to create a paywall), and they immediately get added to a group with the other students, and receive a PDF outlining the course and with worksheets to fill in before the first lesson. On Monday evening, Lilly messages the group prompting them to join the video call. They all use the Telegram group to join the live video call, and Lily tells them all about stage one: working out where your money's going. At the end of the call, Lilly sends everyone next week's PDF. She also sets them a challenge, to share with the group over the course of the week every time they think they're making an unnecessary purchase (Lilly's quite the taskmaster). Over the next week, the group share photos of lattes, receipts for episodes of Real Housewives of Beverly Hills and a lot of crying laughing emojis. (One group member starts trolling the group with aggressive comments, and they're swiftly ejected from the group with the minimum of drama.) The weeks go by and the group gets more financially savvy. At the end of the course, Lilly decides to keep the group set up as her students have had such a great experience they ask if they can continue to chat and update each other on their progress. She uses Levellr's subscription technology to set up a new payment plan for the group at £9.99 a month. She drops in every so often to offer some encouragement or share some tips, but mainly this gang now runs itself, sharing their success stories and bringing financial freedom to their lives.

Find out more about how you can teach via Levellr.