Course Management Strategies

Online courses present unique challenges and opportunities for managing teaching tasks and course workload. These challenges and opportunities range from time management to virtual communication to grading of digital assignments. With a little forethought and pre-planning, instructors can minimize the challenges and maximize the opportunities of course management through a few simple steps and strategies. After teaching online a few times, instructors develop their own combination of strategies to help them best operate and thrive within the online classroom.

Why Is It Important?

Teaching and managing an online course means juggling many responsibilities that can be time consuming. In fact, without an awareness of how best to juggle these responsibilities, instructors’ time spent on their online course can quickly spiral out of control. Conversely, instructors have more control over their class schedule and might be able to teach an online course while living internationally, whether for research or personal reasons. Just as online students need good time management, organization, and self-motivation skills in order to succeed in an online course, so do instructors.

How to Put Into Practice?

To conceptualize the various course management strategies, it is helpful to group them into three main categories: manage time, establish student policies, and promote academic integrity. Each of these categories will be familiar to instructors with face-to-face teaching experience. However, there are unique considerations and challenges that apply to teaching online.

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Where to Find Resources?


  Want More?

The “Course Management Strategies” deep dive topic presents a variety of practical strategies for managing time, communications, and students.

Topics covered include:

  • Time Management
  • Managing Student Policies
  • Promoting Academic Integrity


Visit the Course Management Strategies deep dive topic

Note: This course is available for FREE to all UW-Madison faculty and staff. When you click the link you will be prompted to sign in with your UW-Madison NetID and password. Then you will be taken to the topic homepage where you can learn more and complete activities.