Getting online teaching experience feels like credit -- you have to have some to get some. Everyone starts their career with no experience. Here are four ways to get experience when you don't have any.

If you are just beginning your career adventure as an online professor, you may have no official teaching experience. Maybe you are looking at the job apps and thinking to yourself, "this position requires three years experience, and I have zero. I will skip it." Think again. Many of the job postings have "nice to have" and not firm requirements. Also, you may have more teaching experience than you realize. While hunting for online teaching jobs can feel a lot like your first credit card (without credit you can't get credit), it doesn't have to be.

Here are 5 tips to getting experience for your teaching CV.

  1. Develop a course and sell it cheaply on a site like Fedora or Udemy. The development and teaching process absolutely counts as teaching experience and will be good for your skill set anyway. You may even just get paid!
  2. Guest lecture at a university. If you are close to a college campus, find out who teaches there and go talk with them or email him or her. Ask to come in and guest lecture on a topic you know a lot about. Just an hour of guest lecturing is teaching and you should list this on your CV.
  3. Hold a brown bag lunch or seminar for working adults at your workplace. This shows your commitment to continuing education, your understanding of working with adults (which is likely who will be in your online classroom) and provide you with experience. You will learn about the feedback mechanism for course or training revision. You will mention this in your teaching philosophy statement too.
  4. Get a job as a teaching assistant. Usually the requirements are far less (as is the pay, but you're in this for the experience) than an adjunct in terms of years experience. Often being a TA is a gateway into teaching for an institution too.

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Contact the author Dr. Dani Babb
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