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The A&P Professor

92 EpisodesProduced by Kevin PattonWebsite

Explore human anatomy and physiology (A&P) teaching and learning with host Kevin Patton. An experienced professor, textbook author, and mentor, Kevin is a recognized leader in A&P teaching. The A&P Professor updates science content and provides practical teaching advice. Want some ideas to superchar… read more


EVEN MORE Tricks for Retention Success in Online Courses | TAPP Episode 23

Online courses continue to have a notoriously low retention rate and success rate compared to traditional courses. In this second of three episodes, Kevin continues the conversation with ways to literally make the course more face-to-face, plus using faces, voices, and scheduled announcements to promote connections.

  • Medical mitochondria (4 min)
  • Syllabuses: I need your help (1 min)
  • Review of first two parts of this series (3 min)
  • gFeatured: EVEN MORE Tricks for Retention & Success in Online Courses (18.5 min)


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(0:42) New research proposes using mitochondria isolated from healthy tissue in a patient's body to treat ischemic heart muscle and perhaps other dysfunctional tissues or organs.


(4:44) Syllabuses, syllabi. Whatever. It's almost time to think about tweaking our course documents for the fall semester. I'll cover that in an upcoming episode, so I need you to send your contributions now!


(5:55) It's too long for one episode, so it's a series of three episodes: 21, 22 (previous episodes), and 23 (this episode).

If you're not teaching online now, you will be someday! Most of these tips apply to face-to-face courses, anyway.

In  the previous two episodes, Kevin suggested:

  • It's all about connections.
  • Cultivate a friendly, informal, and supportive "online teaching persona"
  • Express empathy, don't just have empathy.
  • Use customer-service skills when communicating with students
  • Use our own pain points and frustrations to tap into how our students might feel
  • How we can literally make our online course a face to face course
  • How to use faces, voices, and scheduled course announcements to enhance the connections necessary to retain students and promote student success.


 (8:47) Online courses are notorious for high dropout rates and high failure rates, compared to traditional face-to-face classes. Kevin continues to share even more strategies he has found to work in creating and nurturing the kinds of connections that help retain students and support their success in the course.

This episode focuses on:

  • Why reaching out to individual students who may be at risk is important--and how to do that.
  • Why feedback to students is important in nurturing connections.
  • Some final thoughts.

If you experience a repeated section starting about about timestamp 21:36, it's not your imagination. Probably. A pre-release version had such a hiccup and it may have been downloaded into your app. If so, you can simply re-download in the app. Or enjoy twice the fun by leaving the repeat in there!

If the hyperlinks here are not active, go to to find the episode page.

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