Beat Zoom Fatigue: How To Make Your Virtual Course More Engaging

Mountaineers volunteer Serene Chen shares resources to help you design and facilitate a fun, interactive virtual experience.
Serene Chen Serene Chen
Volunteer
February 25, 2021

It’s been nearly a year since COVID-19 changed so much in our lives  - including The Mountaineers. As we dive into the 2021 course season, many of us are thinking about how to improve and refine the experiences we’re designing within the confines of Zoom and Google. Pandemic or not, hybrid and virtual courses are here to stay and we have a great opportunity to make them as accessible, interactive, and fun as possible.

In my day job, I lead company events and employee engagement. In the early days of the pandemic, that meant shifting our weekly company "all-hands" from in-person to fully remote without missing a beat. I’ve since led a variety of events big and small, using ever-changing Zoom functionality and tools available through Google to create interactive, dynamic experiences for teams.

Much of what I’ve learned in the last year translates well to our Mountaineers courses. After considering the club’s pivot to virtual programs, Sara Ramsay and her team shared a list of common questions or roadblocks our volunteers encounter when working remotely to teach and build community:

How To: Make Your Virtual Courses More Engaging

These tips and tricks are framed as the problems you might be trying to solve when planning for the different components of a course, ranging from the learning environment you’re trying to create, to making courses more interactive, to figuring out the backend logistics with fellow leaders. They are simple and straightforward, using the tools you already have. Our hope is that they’ll serve you both immediately and in future planning.

Creating a welcoming and interactive virtual meeting takes time and effort, but the benefits are worth it for the sake of our students and community. 

I hope these are helpful - please don’t hesitate to reach out if you have any questions.

Important Note: Zoom is often releasing new updates. Make sure to remind everyone to upgrade to the latest version of Zoom to take advantage of the latest functionality!

Lead image of an intermediate snowshoe course zoom meeting. photo by serene Chen.