Insights from UAF’s new online organic chemistry labs

This fall, UAF’s Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry debuted its asynchronous online organic chemistry series with labs. There’s a reason this has not been done before: It requires an enormous amount of planning. But we’re doing it, and with some of the wisdom shared here, you might think about taking your lab course completely online as well.

Personalizing communication with your students

Many students struggle with staying engaged in their online courses.  Others lose track of deadlines.  Some students feel that the lack of communication makes it hard for them to stay involved in their courses.  In some situations, students have been through online...

Three tips for semester startup

At UAF eCampus, we are focused on creating win-win scenarios for new-to-online instructors and students. This article is focused on creating that win-win scenario from the start using Blackboard.

How to get students to read your feedback

The type of assessments you give will direct the nature and method of feedback you provide students. Feedback provided through the semester can be essential for guiding student learning. However, if students miss seeing your feedback or if they don’t understand...

Setting up your course in Blackboard

You may not have used Blackboard much in the past, but with the uncertainty of how COVID-19 will affect in-person classes, Blackboard can be a reliable tool to help you prepare. Here are some steps to get started.

Strategies for emotionally connecting with students

Emotionally connecting with students supports engagement and helps ensure high-quality teaching and learning outcomes. Here are some strategies to help students develop connections with the course content, the instructor and their peers.

Reflecting on 30 years of distance and online education

Heidi Olson managed paper-based correspondence courses in the ’80s, supported UAF’s first online offerings in the late ’90s, and has handled thousands of online courses since. She retired last week. Read her reflections on these changes over time and advice on giving students the best possible learning experience.

Is your course organized?

There is no one right way to organize a course, but there are some basic principles that will help students navigate and stay on path.

Address uncertainty in your syllabus

Recommended strategies and language to include in your syllabus to help address the uncertainty surrounding the COVID-19 pandemic. For example, try surveying students about their current routines and internet access.

Scheduling for success

Course schedules are tried-and-true tools that provide a bird’s-eye view of your course, and can effectively communicate to students your plan for the semester. A well-crafted course schedule clarifies structure, facilitates planning and explains pacing.

Where to find inspiration for course design

Course Showcase  We can learn a lot from each other.   You may be curious to see what other faculty are doing in their online class, like how they are organizing content and managing activities. Touring other courses can be a great way to get inspired about creating...

Fostering engagement in online discussion

Creating active discussions in a course can be challenging. In times of COVID-19, fostering that space for community exploration and making connections between content and the current world can become the anchor that keeps the momentum.

OLC Innovate 2020 Virtual Conference

UAF eCampus has secured registration fees for anyone associated with UAF to virtually attend the Online Learning Consortium’s (OLC) “Innovate 2020” Virtual Conference. This virtual conference is from June 15-26 with daily sessions on weekdays. (There...

Keeping the door open

Now more than ever, you are an important tether between our students and campus. Here are some tips for keeping the door open to maintain a relationship with your students.

A Gentle Reminder to Take a Pause – Revised

This Teaching Tip has been revised from the original version for off-campus options.   A default answer to ‘How are you?’ is often currently ‘Busy!’. In addition to forces beyond our control, we take on so much right now and sometimes feel overwhelmed as a result.  ...