What does it mean for an online course to be accessible? How do you begin to make it accessible? Many UAF instructors have already gone through the journey of addressing accessibility in their courses. Here, several of them share their experiences on the challenges and benefits.
If you are teaching an online course at UAF, you have a clear support structure to provide reasonable accommodations for students. Here, UAF eCampus and UAF Disability Services detail available resources and the responsibilities that are shared with instructors.
This teaching tip briefly reviews FERPA and how it’s applied in the digital age.
I can’t say that I’ve mastered the art of a balanced life, but I do have some tips for those new to teaching. These are some hard-won lessons I’ve gathered over the last two decades teaching at UAF.
UAF’s Master of Education in Special Education program became the first online special education program in the nation to earn the Quality Matters’ Online Program Design Certification. Here’s how they did it and how you can earn Quality Matters certifications for your course or program.
Nov. 5-9, 2018, is celebrated as National Distance Learning Week. UAF instructors employ a variety of ways to not only include non-local students but to actually use their differing locations to enhance a course. These three classes, in particular, are strengthened by students outside of Fairbanks:
Universal Design is a collection of principles for making an experience inclusive for a range of users with consideration to age, ability, size and any other condition that causes them to be more or less successful interacting with the world. It is an approach to design that intentionally means to benefit many individuals and it can be applied to course design.
The first day of fall semester is right around the corner. This is the first in a series of four Teaching Tips that provide ideas on readying your course for opening day and covers items that require a longer time for planning and communicating to your incoming roster of students.
As a new semester approaches you should be thinking about making some improvements to your course. There are many review rubric resources available that will help prompt you into making revisions that will better support your students. This week’s tip will share information about some of these helpful resources.
Teaching online since 2011, Janene McMahan has learned some things along the way. In this tip she shares three ideas for making the best use of your time: set expectations, set up your workspace for good flow, and prep a layout once then replicate it.
The summer semester is short. Keeping students engaged and thinking about your course can be helped by creating a regular plan for communication at the beginning of the semester. In this Teaching Tip, we’ll discuss how to create a plan and provide considerations for using Blackboard Announcements to push your notifications out to students.
Getting students to use quality information sources for term papers and projects can be a challenge; the library offers suggestions to make it easier for both instructors and students.
Two online workshops are available in April and June to instructors with existing courses online. The training introduces a subset of the Quality Matters rubric standards which have the greatest impact on course design. Faculty decide and prioritize which sections of their course to improve.
We’re at a point in the semester when energy gets low. Students have gotten quiet on discussion boards, you’ve got grading to last you the rest of winter and winter isn’t near over yet. It can be hard to keep everyone engaged in your work together, but making a simple phone call could make a big difference.
As of this month when your students turn in programming code and graphics inside of Blackboard you can use the New Box View inline grading tool to view the code and add comments to the images. If you previously used Crocodoc to quickly view spreadsheets or papers inside of the Blackboard Grade Center, you’ll find the expanded list of supported file types a breath of fresh air!
During National Distance Learning Week UAF eCampus conversed with students via Facebook. Here’s a light read on student strategies to stay on task as well as a few shared challenges we all face. Read on; it might spark a small change to make in your course as a result.
Solving Ill-structured problems require high order thought, reflective consideration and guided discussion. This teaching tip provides specific research based practices to conducting such discussion in your online class.
Your students have options for demonstrating their knowledge and expertise via video. Kaltura MediaSpace, conveniently integrated with Blackboard, offers a way for students to record, share and store their video demonstrations of content mastery.
Whether you’re creating or updating an online course or experimenting with blending online and face-to-face modes, rich, original media can improve your course. Opportunities abound to enhance your presence and provide your unique perspective.
A few well-placed visuals may help students find their path through your course. Consider providing both a course calendar and a course map to guide them.
Many of us don’t have the luxury of attending software training workshops or classes to learn how to use products like Adobe Photoshop or Microsoft Excel. Having access to just–in–time training is really important in helping us get our jobs done. Finding reliable resources to help learn to use software and technology in your teaching and learning can sometimes be a challenge.
Video captions benefit everyone and make a video more useful as well as accessible. Making your videos accessible with captions meets the needs of all students.
Kaltura Mediaspace, UAF’s video and media delivery platform, gives users greater control over their videos than similar platforms (like YouTube). Instructors can view analytics of videos they deploy from their media gallery inside of Blackboard.
Key structural course components should work together to support intended learning outcomes. Considering alignment helps us focus on our designs for student understanding, and spend time looking at how various course elements support those goals.
Today’s teachers face a critical challenge deciding when and how to make use of technology in their classroom, whether they are supplementing a classroom experience or leading a flipped, hybrid, or fully online course. UAF eCampus’s team of instructional designers exists to help with this (https://iteachu.uaf.edu/events/), but each of us is always our own design staff.
By spending an hour a day updating your course over the holiday break you’ll be ready to go. There are 26 days between when Fall Grade are due and the first day of Spring classes.
When the world feels too big to shut out of your classroom, do you close the door or do you invite in what’s on the minds of so many? Integrating current events into your course is not only engaging for students, it teaches them to approach challenging conversations as learners and to defend their positions with evidence.
It is well known that rapid responsive communication with students can help eliminate the feeling of isolation in online classes. The question for instructors isn’t so much how often you should communicate with students, but how early and in what form? Using one of the tools provided to all University of Alaska faculty, this teaching tip offers the idea of very early, pre-semester email communication with students. The end goal is to positively shape expectations and achievement.
On a flight from Boston to Seattle a couple years ago, I was sitting next to a young man who told me that he was in his final semester in computer engineering at M.I.T. and he was going for his first interview at a big company, which he was pretty excited about.
Last year I spent two days in a cold hotel conference room in Dallas practicing how to build connections between group members. Connecting individuals increases their chances of building community. Building community helps with success.