Online and Blended Course Development
These pages will assist you with all aspects of developing and teaching an online or blended course. To get the most out of this resource, first read the University’s policies on teaching in these modalities below. Next, visit our page called “Is Teaching Online Right for You” in order to assess your own preparedness for teaching online. If it seems like a good fit and you have approval from your Chair and Dean, feel free to contact us for support with the development process, or use these resources on your own. Please keep in mind that developing an online course can take between 12 and 24 weeks. We ask that you contact us at least 12 weeks ahead of the date on which you intend to teach the course if you would like our support. We will also need to confirm that the course has been approved and coded as either “online” or “blended” before students register for the course.
Course Approval and Policies
New Course Offerings
Each new online or blended course is approved by Adelphi faculty governance committees in the same manner that other traditional courses and programs are approved. Detailed procedures and forms are available on the Adelphi Intranet (on-campus only).
Before teaching a traditional face-to-face course in an online or blended format, faculty need to obtain written permission from their dean or chair. Course methodology needs to be indicated when the course is open for student registration. Please let your departmental course planner know if you are using the Blended (30-79% content online) or Online (80%+ content online) methodology so they can process the course appropriately.
Distance Learning Policy
Adelphi’s Distance Learning Policy provides a thorough overview of the guiding principles for distance learning at Adelphi and includes important information about faculty preparation, course approval process and effective practices in online instruction and course design.
Begin Developing an Online Course
Developing an online course should be a dedicated exercise in organization, learning new skills, and re-inventing yourself as a facilitator of learning. It is recommended that faculty teaching in Web-based modalities acquire competencies in online pedagogy and educational technologies. We advise faculty to plan for several months of development time. There are several resources available to faculty who wish to begin this process. First, there are the resources within the section in this site called “Resources for Planning and Development.” The FCPE also offers a self-paced fully-online course on how to design and teach an online course. FCPE staff are also available to assist faculty throughout the development process. Please schedule an appointment through our contact page or call us for more information at 516.877.4221.
The following workshops are recommended one semester prior to developing or teaching an online course.
- Online and Blended Course Design
- Moodle Basics
- The Art of Online Discussion Forums
- Moodle Gradebook
- Preparing Online Quizzes in Moodle
Check our current schedule to see when these workshops are offered.
Instructors are required to be available online consistently throughout the duration of the course to assist students with their studies. Course communication methods include:
- Virtual office hours via: phone, live chat or video-conferencing tools
- Discussion boards
- Student surveys
Is Online Teaching Right for You?
The Faculty Center for Professional Excellence (FCPE) assists with this question. Before embarking on the approval process, we recommend that you read through the questions below and answer honestly about your teaching style. They are for your personal use and will help you assess your preparation needs if you are considering becoming an online instructor. You can also schedule an appointment with the FCPE at 516.877.4221 to brainstorm ideas and course possibilities.
- Do you communicate clearly through your writing?
- Are you self-motivated and self-disciplined instead of scrambling at the last minute?
- Are you willing to initiate and moderate online class discussions for students?
- Are you comfortable with using or learning technology as opposed to others who seem easily frustrated?
- Do you believe that high quality instruction can take place outside of a traditional classroom?
- Do you set specific objectives for your courses?
- Do you prepare each session’s instruction before class rather than make it up as you go along?
- Are you able to set limits for yourself, e.g., stick to office hours?
- Are you well organized at managing files and folders, both in your physical office and on your computer?
- Do you have regular access to a home computer/laptop with high-speed Internet access?
- Do you use email regularly as a communications method?
- Can you easily surf the Web and perform searches to find necessary information online?
- Do you know how to download a file from the Internet?
- Can you attach a file to an outgoing email?
- Are you able to sit at your computer for two or more hours at a time?
- Do you have the necessary software applications on your home and/or office computer, e.g., MS Office Suite, Mozilla Firefox browser?
- Would you feel comfortable providing basic technical computer or Internet assistance to students?
Depending on your answers to the questions above, you may need extra preparation before submitting a proposal for an online course. The FCPE can help you work on your technical and organizational skills in order to become more adept at successfully leading students in an online course.
To thrive in this teaching platform, you can’t put off creating course assignments or the preparation of materials. You must be able to resist distractions, whether it be people in your home, the TV, or other interruptions on your computer while you’re preparing course work. You need to be able to set aside blocks of time where online posting takes priority.
Additionally, students are depending on you to lead them through the course work and to make expectations and directions clear and explicit. You will also be expected to model and adhere to certain “Netiquette” standards of online communication conduct. In addition, students may be looking forward to enhancements to break up all the text, such as having their reading supplemented by images, video, and audio.
A good next step once you are ready to tackle online course design is to explore the FCPE’s resources for online and blended course development to learn more about best practices and view planning tools.