May 18, 2022


Sofema Online (SOL) considers the best Instructional Strategies for effective online delivery of aviation subject matter.


Online Learning whether the student is working privately through material or whether he or she is led by an instructor is, without doubt, becoming the new normal, even to the point that it is expected to be the medium of choice in a post-Covid world.

Online training brings its own challenges including:

  • The need for the instructor to assume a higher level of responsibility related to delegate engagement (managing passive delegates).
  • Responsibility for the delegate attendance including identity verification.
  • Responsibility for the recording of the event (an important aspect as the completed MP4 file is promised to the delegate).
  • Strive for Relevance:

o Engage with the Delegates – Understand why are they here?
o Take the time to explain to the delegates how the course is relevant and how they will benefit (Motivation and willingness to engage improves when adult learners understand the value of the training).


  • Have a backup plan – the more prepared you are for contingencies the less likely you will need to call on them, however being able to cope during different disruptions is what makes you a professional.

o Alternate Internet Source.
o Backup Computer (LAPTOP?).
o Separate access to the training so you can monitor what is taking place in real-time (helps not to get lost when sharing screens) – I use my GSM to monitor the proceedings.

Can you Make your Training Experience Visually Stimulating?

An Online Instructor is lost without Passion. It is most important to accept the need for “passion” Consider that if you are not passionate about the value the course will bring to your students then it is going to be difficult to keep them interested in your material.

By sharing our enthusiasm and motivation we have an opportunity to encourage the delegates attention.

  • Good use of colour graphics as well as pictures can add value to our message.
  • Additionally, by using other medium (as we would in the classroom) we can maintain the flow and encourage a high level of engagement.
  • Consider the Use of External Web Links and Other Resources it is easy to switch between different sites and pre-prepared material.
  • Note – Prior to the delivery of the session, it is important to check all links, etc. which you intend to use during the session.
  • Where possible download content to a desktop folder so you have it readily available it can help to improve the user experience (here is nothing worse than waiting for a slow website to load).
  • Make a separate note of any hyperlinks, etc. that you intend to use and place it on a word document which you can keep on the desktop – (You can also share this document with the students in advance as part of the general preparations).
  • Add Value by creating and maintaining a strong presence.
  • Try to use video chat rather than basic instant messages when interacting with students.
  • Encourage the students to engage by beginning discussions in the group chat.
  • Ask regular questions and encourage full student involvement.

Avoid Isolation – Driving Discussions and Conversations

Without a doubt, the potential for student Isolation is a major challenge which we face during online learning and for this reason (as well as the need to ensure attendance) it is important to maintain a video link to ensure visibility as well as promote interactive engagement.

  • As the Instructor as well as the facilitator it is your responsibility to take full control and lead the learning experience, a few points to consider:

o Engage the delegates in conversation by asking a particular person for their view (this is important as general questions tend to be answered by the same few with many students hiding in plain sight).
o Avoid closed questions instead of going for questions like – where do you see the challenges related to xyz? Or how do you make xyz work in your organisation?

Online Training Breaks and Discipline

A student’s typical attention span is around 20 to 25 minutes so it is important to break up the sessions so there is a change of pace or focus around this timespan.

Prior to commencement agree on the timing of the breaks and the duration of the breaks – each hour it is good to take a short break – aim for 5 mins (note discipline is required to keep it below 10 mins).

Next Steps

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Sofema Online ( and Sofema Aviation Services ( provide classroom, webinar, and online regulatory compliant and vocational training. For additional information, please see the websites or email


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