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About the Author: Melissa A. Venable, PhD

An Education Writer for's Inside Online Learning blog and host of the weekly #IOLchat, Melissa's professional background in higher education includes work at private, public, and for-profit institutions.

Melissa is an experienced instructional designer, curriculum developer, online instructor, academic advisor, and career counselor who has experience with undergraduate and graduate students. She earned her doctorate in Curriculum and Instruction – Instructional Technology from the University of South Florida, where she also completed faculty certification in online teaching. Melissa currently teaches instructional design and project management online courses at the University of South Florida and Saint Leo University.

More Recent Posts

December 19, 2014

social classroom

Are You Ready for the Social Classroom?

While it may have been optional to tweet a class discussion or join a Facebook study group in the past, online classes of the future could require this kind of participation of all students. The “rise of the ‘social’ classroom”…

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December 12, 2014

profitable major

Is Engineering the Only Profitable Major?

Today’s college students are taking on more debt than ever before to pay for the increasingly high cost of higher education. While the general consensus is that college degrees are still worth the investment, you’ve probably also read plenty of…

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December 5, 2014

Online course on campus

When an Online Course Isn’t Completely Online

Have you ever registered for an online class only to find out after the term starts that there are required, in-person meetings? It has happened to me and it’s frustrating to say the least. Sometimes this kind of information is…

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November 21, 2014

Study apps johanl

6 Top Study Apps for Online Students

As we approach the holidays and end of the traditional academic semester, final exams, projects, and other course commitments are coming due. Whether you prefer to study on your own or as part of a group, there are mobile apps…

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November 14, 2014

computer ready for online learning

Is Your Computer Ready for Online Learning?

Do you need to upgrade your laptop? What about new software? Can you complete your course work from a tablet or smartphone? Staying up to date with the latest technology is a daunting, and potentially expensive, process. If you are…

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November 7, 2014

career development activities

5 Career Development Activities You Can Add to Any Course

Many online students enroll in their academic programs with career goals in mind. But this doesn’t mean they are actively working with a Career Counselor or the school’s Career Center to fine tune their plans, conduct a job search, or…

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October 28, 2014

Driving Innovation in Online Learning

Driving Innovation with Online Learning

If you’ve visited the Inside Online Learning blog before, it’s probably no secret that the Online Learning Consortium (formerly The Sloan Consortium) provides many of my favorite resources for both research and professional development. I’m attending the OLC conference this…

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October 24, 2014

note-taking apps

5 Top Note-Taking Apps for Online Students

Need to study for a big exam or have trouble keeping all of your notes together? Do you lose track of when assignments are due in different courses? Are you in charge of coordinating a team project? There are apps…

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