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Create Your Course

Practice Activities

Are you looking for more advanced training to really help you take your course to the next level? Learn how to add practice activities throughout your course to truly engage your students.

We’ve created some great resources to get you started. We’ve provided you with two different ways to learn – a video course, or a written overview. (Feel free to do both!)

Option 1: Enroll in this Official Udemy Insights Course: Adding Practice Activities

In this course you’ll learn everything you need to know about adding in practice activities throughout your course. As a bonus, you’ll also learn about your specific course style so you can target the practice activities directly to what you are planning on teaching.

 


Option 2:
Continue Reading
Follow the steps below and learn how to add practice activities to your course. We’ve provided information, resources, and activities to get you going.

ADDING PRACTICE TO YOUR COURSE:

What is a Practice Activity?
Practice activities can be anything that makes a student apply their learning. It can be a reflection question, coding exercise, project, worksheet, or quiz.

Why should you care?
We all know how it feels to be lectured endlessly on theory without any opportunities to actually get your hands dirty. Practice Activities help you make your content relatable for students. Practice activities can be anything that makes a student apply their learning. It can be a reflection question, coding exercise, project, worksheet, or quiz.

When you help students take the content they’ve learned and apply it to their own world, it makes the content much more engaging and valuable. Helping your students apply their knowledge in real-world ways is the most important part of teaching on Udemy.

Students come to Udemy because they want to learn things that will impact their day-to-day life and see results. In fact, a lack of practical activities is the BIGGEST reason why students leave negative reviews.

What makes good practice:
When including practice activities in your course, follow the “virtuous circle” for engaging your students. This circle consists of four steps:


IDEAS FOR PRACTICE ACTIVITIES:

There are plenty of activities that you can – and should include in your course. Use the resources below to explore a collection of activities to choose from.


WAYS TO INCLUDE PRACTICE IN YOUR UDEMY COURSE:

Udemy offers different tools for instructors to make their content more interactive and to get students to apply what they’ve learned.


ASSIGNMENTS: 

When should you use this feature?
Assignments should be added to any course that teaches students a new skill and needs to provide students the chance to practice on their own and get feedback.

Examples: Personal or professional development courses, like Photography (e.g. project), Management Training (e.g. case study), History (e.g. essay)

How does the feature work?

  • Assignments give students the chance to practice on their own and get feedback
  • You can use a variety of methods to get students to apply what they’ve learned, from answering open-ended questions, to case studies, or projects. Look at this list of activities for inspiration.
  • Unlike quizzes, assignments are good for concepts that requires deeper understanding or practice, e.g. problem-solving skills or creativity
  • Students are able to submit open text, format code, or upload images or links (e.g. to Vimeo, YouTube, or Google Drive)
  • Students will get the chance to review their own work, and get feedback from peers or from you (the instructor)

Best Practices

  • Include at least one assignment per section. Frequent and spread out practice are best for learning.
  • Have assignment replicate a real-life scenario. Give students an assignment that ensures they’re practicing the skills they need in real life. Have them work on a project, or frame the assignment in a realistic context (e.g. case study) to have them practice problem-solving
  • Provide students with a time to complete. Let students know how long the activity might take them, so they get a sense of the scope of the activity. When you estimate the time, try the activity yourself and then remember students will need 2-3 times as long.
  • Write good instructions. You can include instructions in both text and video. Describe the activity, its importance, what students need to do, and list the materials needed to complete the assignment.
  • Provide examples. If you provide sample solutions, students get a chance to evaluate their own work by comparing it against the example(s).
  • Ensure students are getting feedback. Encourage community-building and peer feedback. Provide students with a rubric or checklist that lists the criteria for a high-quality piece of work. This leads to more and better targeted peer feedback.

EXAMPLES

Leadership course – self reflection questions:

  1. What are some of your biggest strengths in the workplace?
  2. What are some weaknesses?
  3. Explain a recent situation where you wish you would have acted differently.

Photoshop course – project:
Create a black and white image and make a certain area stand out.

Angular course – project:
In this assignment, you’re going to create, use and style your own components and see practice how you can build up your Angular app with Components.

Real course examples:
Example 1
Example 2
Example 3

Where can I find this feature?
Click here to learn more about how to include assignments in your Udemy course.


PRACTICE TESTS: 

You can add a practice test into a traditional Udemy course (in addition to video and article lectures). Or – and this is unique to practice tests – you can create practice test only courses. Click here to learn how to create a practice test only course.

When should you use this feature?
Practice Tests are particularly useful if your course is on a topic that prepares students for a final exam.

Examples: SAT, GMAT, ACT; or other Certification Exams used in a variety of professional industries like IT, Architecture, Finance, and Business.

How does the feature work?

  • Practice Tests are composed of a list of questions, either as Single-Answer Multiple Choice, or Multiple-Answer-Select.
    Unlike Quizzes, Practice Tests are designed to be a longer, more robust assessment tool.
  • Instructors can set a time limit, a passing grade for students to strive for, and bucket questions into specific “Knowledge Areas,” so that students know what sub-topics they need to spend more time studying.
  • Practice Tests are graded only upon completion, and are timed.

Best Practices

  • Use this feature when it makes sense. This feature is especially useful to prepare students for certification exams. It can be used to test recall and application, but not problem-solving skills or creativity. Consider our other features (e.g. “Assignments”, “Coding Exercises”) if you want you want your students to assess other skills or apply their learning in a deeper context.
  • Make this a realistic exam experience. The purpose of the practice test is to prepare them for the real exam.
    • Use similar question types. Research examples for the exam you are preparing them for. Create questions that are similar in content, style and language. But be mindful of copyright. If you don’t have permission to use existing questions, you need to create your own.
    • Prepare a similar exam in length and requirements. Include the same number of questions and necessary score to pass as the real exam. Also make sure your answer choices and the number of right and wrong answers is the same as the exam, e.g. are there 3 or 4 answer choices, is there one or more correct answers, etc.
  • Frame the questions in a context or real-life scenario. To assess application and critical thinking, you should ask questions that require students to think through a realistic situation and apply what they’ve learned in it.
  • Avoid negative questions, except if it’s required for significant learning outcomes. Otherwise you unnecessarily confuse students which is not what you’re assessing.
  • Have challenging distractors. The biggest problem with Multiple-Choice questions is that the wrong answer options are often too obvious. Students shouldn’t be able to guess the answer without consuming the content. Make sure you:
    • Have plausible distractors. Think about common student errors or misconceptions to come up with distractors.
    • Switch up the placement of right and wrong answers, because most instructors have the right answer as the 2nd or 3rd option. You can randomize the answer order in the feature.
    • Keep the length and style of the answer options similar. If the alternatives have differences in grammar, length, formatting, or language choice, they can serve as clues to which answers are incorrect.
    • Avoid extremes like “never”, “always”, “only”.
    • Try to avoid “none of the above” and “all of the above” options because students can guess the right answer with partial knowledge and you don’t know if they know the correct answer.

Examples of Multiple-Choice questions

Course examples:
Course with practice test
Practice-test only #1 (best rated)
Practice-test-only #2

Where can I find this feature?
Click here to learn more about how to include practice tests in your Udemy course.


To add practice activities to your course, click into your draft course from your instructor dashboard.

Go to My Draft Course