I read an article by Drs. Murugan and Badawi published by Faculty Focus. titled What Online Faculty Can Do to Avoid Burnout (Jan 2018) that lists 24 suggestions on avoiding faculty burnout and maintaining instructional vitality. These tips for online faculty are great.
Some I already do and some I try to do. Others, well, I know I should, but I just can’t seem to follow through on. I thought I would share 3 of the suggestions the article lists and how I implement them to circumvent burnout.
1. Developing strong classroom management skills is essential in online and face-to-face courses. One way to avoid repetitive student questions is to create a FAQ sheet. Many questions will be applicable to more than subject, so I create a template with those questions and answers. It’s updated at the start each term for each of my classes. Then I upload into my LMS Resource section, copy the link and paste it into my opening message and in syllabus.
2. Taking breaks is so hard to do! I get so engrossed in my work that I don’t realize how long I’ve been sitting at the keyboard. Getting up and stretching or moving around for 5 minutes every hour is a good habit to make. Good for resting the brain and increasing the energy level. Years ago, I put away pop and chocolate bars and got out the nuts and dried fruit for munching. No more sugar crashes!
3. Connecting with my peers in person, on the phone, or even in an online group is a great idea. Talking about teaching strategies with others helps me improve my skills. Of course, we talk about other things too and get a good laugh in, it helps with that feeling of isolation.
How about you? What do you do in avoiding faculty burnout? Do you have any tips for online faculty to sustain instructional vitality? Be sure to tell us about it.
Let’s get a conversation going.
PS Here’s a link to the article: