Author: British Council | Published on 1 September 2022


Look at each of the questions in turn. Think carefully about how they relate to your own training experiences. Then click on each box to see tips, advice, guidance and further information.

1. Think about any online training sessions which you have attended. Do you think they were well managed? What does well-managed training look like?

Well-managed training makes participants feel secure. It can also make your life, as a trainer, much easier. Well-managed training follows these guidelines: 

  • There is a timetable and the trainer sticks to it.
  • All training information / materials are distributed before the session / course.
  • Sessions start at the advertised time.
  • Feedback on progress is given regularly.
  • The trainer keeps control during both synchronous (real time) and asynchronous (in your own time) activities.
  • The trainer holds the teachers accountable for managing their time and completing their work.

2. What management skills do you think are important in remote learning environments? How could you implement them?

The same management skills are needed in remote teaching as in a face-to-face training. However, you may need to adapt them to an online setting.

Here are some guidelines to follow:

Build good relationships: Involve teachers in establishing how you will communicate with each other, so that they feel part of the process. If you have the technology, use a brainstorming website / tool for this. If not, teachers can send their ideas to the group. You can still be engaging and friendly, even if from a distance. Tell the teachers about yourself. Ask them to tell the group about themselves. Respond to comments positively. Be fair and inclusive.

Have good administration and timekeeping skills: Keep registers, provide timetables, keep good records and establish routines e.g. what to expect at the beginning of each session. This will give the trainees confidence in you and in the systems you are using.

Give frequent and constructive feedback: On small tasks, this could be as simple as a ‘thumbs up’ emoji. If you ask teachers to submit a task, give timely feedback. Don’t expect teachers to hand in work on time if you are late in giving feedback.

Understand the technology you are using: Don’t expect the teachers to use a platform until you have tested it thoroughly yourself. You need to be confident about the way you present the course.

Have a Plan B: Always have an alternative in case the technology fails or there is no electricity. Be flexible and ready to change if necessary. Change to a new method immediately if you lose power, your connection drops or your teachers can’t access the session. Having a backup like using text messages is a good management tip.

3. What are the most common technical problems you might experience when training remotely? How can you help teachers with these issues?

The only certain thing about technology is that it will sometimes go wrong! To be a trainer in an online environment does not mean you have to be a technical expert. However, there are basic technical troubleshooting skills you should learn. These include:

  • Learning how to use the programmes or apps you will be using. If you are using WhatsApp or Zoom, for example, make sure you know which features will be useful to you. Think about how you can explain these features to your trainees.
  • Find a short tutorial on how to use the programmes and send it to the teachers beforehand. This could be a video clip or a document. Refer to it during the first session, so that teachers know where to find help.
  • If you are using videoconferencing material, familiarise yourself with the sound and video settings on the computer. One common problem is that teachers can’t hear. This is often because they haven’t checked their settings. You can send a quick message to help them fix the problem.
  • If you want teachers to submit work they have completed, give very clear instructions on how to save and send their work. Again, a short tutorial can help.

4. What challenges do you anticipate in managing remote learning effectively? What could you do, and what could you say to participants, to minimise these issues?

Managing online training has similar challenges to face-to-face training. However, there are also some specific strategies you can follow to make sure online training is well managed. 

These include: 

  • Relationships with teachers and between teachers are more difficult to manage remotely because you aren’t in the same room and you can’t see their reactions or their body language. You may have to work harder at building relationships.
  • Administration issues, e.g. lessons which start late or run over time because teachers are not ready. This can be frustrating for you and for participants who arrived on time. Give guidelines at the beginning of the training and repeat them frequently. Start on time, even if teachers join late.
  • Keeping up with tasks. You need to hold teachers accountable for tasks which need to be submitted.

What changes are you going to make in your training sessions to manage them better?

This is up to you! Being organised is crucial. If you plan well, keep good records and remain flexible, your training should work well. You should also regularly reflect on how you have managed your sessions, and make any necessary changes.