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  1. 1. Lesson: Before Your Course Objective: After completing this lesson, you will be able to describe why and how to communicate with participants before the start of the course. 1
  2. 2. Topic 1: The Welcome Email If the course you are facilitating is 100% online, your first contact will likely be by email. Send a welcome email message a week in advance of the course start. This accomplishes the following important goals: 2
  3. 3. Topic 1: The Welcome Email • Officially begins your relationship with participants • Reminds participants when the course will open and close so they begin to think about planning their time • Sets the tone for the course • Emphasizes the value of learner voices and input • Sets expectations for communications, including how and when participants can contact you, and the schedule of assignments • Communicates resources and contacts for content and technical support so potential barriers to participation can be addressed right away 3
  4. 4. Topic 1: The Welcome Email  Refer to the Facilitating Online Courses Materials you downloaded at the beginning to find the Welcome Message Example. Your course may be hybrid, beginning with a face-toface session that is followed by an online session. Send a message as soon as possible after the face-to-face session (the same day is best) in order to address the relevant goals listed above.  On the left menu, click During Your Course to continue. 4