QR Codes for online courses

Online courses offer huge benefits for students of all ages. Convenient, cost effective, flexible, and interactive, online courses provide us with learning opportunities that we can access anytime and anywhere. In this article, we will explore the benefits of using QR Codes on online courses, describe how to make and use them, and provide specific examples.

Benefits of Using QR Codes for Online Courses

  • Increased engagement with students. QR Codes give students the opportunity to reach out to the instructor and share their thoughts about the course. This is a better and faster option that having your students type the URL flashed on your screen.
  • Easy access to course materials. Students can scan the QR Code and download the materials on their own devices. This minimizes the need for you to send them the materials one-by-one via email. They are also free to download and access these at their most convenient time.
  • Promotes self-directed learning. By providing materials to additional references and online/offline activities they can do on their own, you can help students take a more active role in the learning process. You can also help them find resources on topics they are interested in, so that they can explore these topics more deeply.

How to Create and Use QR Codes

Creating QR Codes

1. Select a QR Code generator tool. There are a handful of free and paid QR Code generators available today. One example is QR Cloud, which is a QR Code marketing suite subscription service that allows users to make dynamic QR Codes and smart pages.

2. Choose the type of content you want to link to the QR Code. Plan what information you want to put inside your QR Code and select the appropriate type.

4. Encode the necessary information you want to include in your QR Code. If you are making a static QR Code, you have to make sure that all of the details are correct, since you can’t edit it once generated.

5. Customize the appearance of your QR Code, if necessary. If you want your QR Code to appear on brand, you can personalize it by changing the shape and colors. Many QR Code generators will allow you to design the appearance of your QR Codes without affecting scannability.

6. Generate the QR Code. Once you are satisfied with the appearance of your QR Code and you have made sure that it works as intended, download it and start integrating on your course material.

Using QR Codes

1. Place QR Codes in course materials. Add QR Codes to link to supplemental videos, other reading materials and printable activity sheets. This makes it easier for your students to access relevant content.

2. Share QR Codes on social media platforms. Direct potential students to the link to your online course by posting its QR Code on various social media accounts. You can also encourage your students to share it to their friends so that your course will reach more people.

3. Use QR Codes during live lectures. During live lec]tures, you can add QR Codes to solicit engagement and participation from students. For example, you can link them to answer your question on mentimeter.com, where you can view the results live. You can also do this to give incentives to students who are tuned in, such as a limited code for a free one-on-one coaching session.

Best Practices for Using QR Codes in Online Courses

  • Keep QR Codes simple. Too much data inside the QR Code may make it hard to read. This is one reason using dynamic QR Codes is beneficial. Using multiple colors and shapes other than square may also make scanning slower, so it’s a good idea to stick to the basic shape and colors.
  • Use high-quality images. Download your QR Code in PNG if you’re going to print it. For use on the web, make sure that your QR Code is big enough to be scanned.
  • Test QR Codes before sharing them with students. Doing test scans in different parts of the preparation process ensures that your QR Code contains the correct information. The best thing about dynamic QR Codes is that they are editable, which gives you enough room to change the contents even after printing.
  • Ensure accessibility for all students. Not everyone has the capacity to scan QR Codes. So, it is highly recommended to add the URL alongside the QR Code. Also, add a call-to-action so your students know exactly what to expect when they scan your QR Code.

Examples of QR Codes in Online Courses

  • QR codes linked to supplemental resources
  • QR codes linked to interactive activities
  • QR codes linked to feedback surveys


QR Codes are a very simple yet effective way to instantly share information with your students. They offer easy access to learning materials, make discussions interactive and allow students to give feedback in just a scan.

If you’re an educator or anyone who is thinking of creating an online course, sign up with QR Cloud to discover the many benefits of QR Codes for your course.