The Many Perspectives of an Online Course

Concurrent Session 7

Session Materials

Brief Abstract

Many groups of people are involved with an online course – including course designers, faculty and student training and support roles, and the students and faculty themselves. What does each group wish the others knew? In this interactive session, we’ll discuss the research as well as our own unique perspectives. 


Sara has over ten years of teaching, training, and instructional design experience in the online, blended, and face-to-face modalities. This includes two Blackboard Exemplary Course Awards for excellence in instructional design, and extensive experience teaching and working with college students as well as facilitating professional development offerings to faculty. She holds an M.Ed. in Educational Technology and an M.S. in Management and currently works as an instructional designer and adjunct online instructor.

Extended Abstract

The presenter’s career path began in instructional design, transitioned into faculty training and development, and then a return to instructional design, while also simultaneously completing an online graduate degree and online adjunct teaching as well. This has led to an enhanced awareness and understanding of the many “hats” worn in online learning; many of us wear more than one over the years and often more than one at the same time. This multi-faceted perspective can bring great value to the course, as a quality course should always be considered from various perspectives including the instructional design side, training/support/administration side, faculty side, and of course the student learning side. Each perspective is unique, and each group involved can look at the course in a new way.

In this highly interactive session, each group represented will have the opportunity to answer two important questions:

  • What do I wish the other groups knew about online learning?
  • What do I want to know from the other groups about online learning?

In addition to these questions, we will also discuss what the research says identify common themes that exist among all groups; often, we are not as far apart in perspective as we may think.

The session agenda is as follows:

  • 0:00 – 0:05 - Presenter/Session Introduction
  • 0:05 – 0:15 – Small Group discussion: What do I wish other groups knew? What do I want to know? During this time, questions to other groups will be collected by the presenter via online polling software and/or written index cards.
  • 0:15 – 0:30 – Large group discussion – common themes that arose? Q&A with collected questions as well.
  • 0:30 – 0:40 – What does the research say about these perspectives?

0:40 – 0:45 – Closing thoughts and questions