Courses are increasingly becoming a popular medium of lesson delivery, and as such, they are evolving to better suit the students using them. In the past, courses were just generic and they did not look to address student needs like their preparedness, and now, thanks to some developments, we are starting to see such student needs being incorporated into course design.
Student preparedness looks at how well students are equipped with the skills required to take a course and it is now viewed as one of the fundamentals of any course. The principle underlying this is that a course will not be effective if it is not designed in such a way that the students have the skills to grasp the concepts it presents. In this regard, it is clear to see that student preparedness plays a pivotal role in the success or failure of delivery of any course.
Student Preparedness in Practice
A good example of incorporating student preparedness is an English teacher trying to teach the language to a group of students who do not have an appreciation of interactive communication skills or any other skills required to learn English. In preparing the course, the English teacher will have to ensure that he/she includes activities that bring about the necessary skills for learning in their course design.
How Student Preparedness Is Incorporated Theoretically
Theoretically, student preparedness has been said to be achieved through several means like using appealing readings and making sure that the course material links seamlessly with other class or peer sessions. This is a more traditional approach to course design which is based on studies that have been conducted in the past. While this approach is not wrong, it somehow fails to leave room to enhance student preparedness because it is somewhat limited.
The strategies employed may not necessarily work with all the students, as each student has their own particular strengths and weaknesses in relation to the course, therefore more flexibility is required to implement operative student preparedness.
Student Preparedness in Practice
With experience, it has now been shown that course design needs to look at and address the academic needs of the students. It is because of this discovery that course designers now consider the group of students that the course is aimed at in order to
understand their needs and addressing them in the design.
Course design now includes looking at student behavior and modeling the course in ways that promote student engagement, interaction, and understanding. Incorporating student preparedness is now a strategy employed by course developers in order to create excellent courses.
The Future of Course Design
While the movement away from the old way of designing courses is now the norm, we are seeing more hybrid courses making an entrance. These hybrid courses now come with a substantial online element which means that student preparedness is crucial now more than ever because students need to be able to work through the course without the face-to-face interaction with their tutors.
Incorporating student preparedness into the course design will allow for the effective provision of the courses. At the end of the day, a course is there to help a student succeed, and integrating student preparedness plays an important role in achieving this objective.