I used LaunchPad to teach a class for the first time this past semester. It was a class I’d never taught before, which meant throughout the semester I spent a lot of time preparing lesson plans. I needed the online aspect of the class to run smoothly. So I jumped in with both feet. Here are three things I learned:
- Students like it. My school uses Blackboard exclusively, so I encountered a lot of blank stares when I mentioned using LP on the first day of class. But students found it easy to use and had no problems keeping track of and uploading their assignments every week.
- I like it. Sure, LaunchPad seems cool when you first look at it, but I’d never actually used it to teach a class. What I discovered was it made creating assignments easy; after the first class I never had to spend time explaining where to find homework.
- Students loved the built in exercises, in particular LearningCurve. My goal every semester is to help students learn to think for themselves and LearningCurve (along with the other built in exercises) nudged them along at just the right pace. I would encourage you to dig into the resources as soon as you get ahold of your course and find out what might be there that can help you help your students too.