A Recipe for eCourse Design: Combining Raw Ingredients and Modality Options to Create Successful Courses

Workshop Session 2

Session Materials

Brief Abstract

Creating an eCourse is similar to cooking – raw ingredients become a dish through thoughtful combination and perhaps a little spice! This hands-on workshop will demonstrate how to turn your content and assessment ingredients into online, hybrid, and CBE courses.  Participants will leave with a recipe for design success.


Jennifer Davis, Instructional Designer at Sinclair College, has over 23 years of experience in education with university, community college and adult education providers. She holds a Bachelor's in History from the University of Dayton and a Master's in Instructional Design from WGU. Jennifer also serves as the CBE lead Instructional Designer and teaches the First Year Experience course in the CBE modality. She holds several Quality Matters certifications including Master Reviewer, Face-to-Face APPQMR Facilitator, Course Review Manager, and QM Coordinator. She has presented at state and national conferences on such topics as course design, literacy, professional development, and technology. Additionally, she develops faculty trainings on CBE, QM, and LMS usage/tools.
Vandana Rola, eCourse Design and Development Manager at Sinclair College, holds M.S. in Physics and Education from Delhi University, India. Previously, she worked as an Instructional Designer, and taught physics and math at the high school and community college levels. She won Innovator of the Year award and was part of Sinclair winning its first Bellwether Award for pioneering online science labs. Vandana has presented at various state and national conferences, including ITC, League, and Bellwether on topics such as Online Science labs, Master Course Model in eCourse Design and Development. Under her supervision, over 70 online, hybrid, and CBE courses are developed annually. Vandana is also one of the QM Coordinators for Sinclair.

Extended Abstract



As eCourse modalities expand to meet the needs of students, faculty, institutions, and emerging technologies, course design has taken on the challenge of finding effective and innovative means to deliver content and assessments.  Courses have moved beyond the classroom to online, hybrid, and competency-based education (CBE) modalities.

Using the analogy of cooking, this interactive workshop will teach the basics of navigating the vast options of eCourse design through:

  1. selecting the menu (course);
  2. gathering ingredients (content, activities and assessments);
  3. determining the style of dish (delivery modality); and
  4. preparing the dish (design and development).

Given a set of ingredients, participants can prepare one or more dishes through hands-on design work.  The practice and recipes they leave with will start their own course design cookbook.

Workshop Learning Objectives

Participants will be able to:

  • Distinguish the specific elements of each eCourse modality (online, hybrid, CBE) [LO1].
  • Determine layout adjustments needed for each eCourse modality [LO2].
  • Diagram the process of designing eCourse modalities from the same content and assessments [LO3].
  • Articulate how this process applies to their own institution [LO4].

Target Audience:  Instructional designers, instructional technologists, faculty, and distance learning administrators

Navigating the various modalities and considering the design needs of each can be a daunting task.  Where are the commonalities? Where are the differences?  By using a comfortable analogy of cooking, the target audience can utilize this same correlation back at their own institution when collaborating with other distance learning staff and faculty.  It takes some of the education-based “lingo” out of the equation and thus brings a familiar aspect to the discussion. 

Proposed Workshop Agenda

Please click on the link above to see the proposed workshop agenda with alloted times, activities, and learning objectives.

Required Materials

Presenters will bring a laptop for connecting to the provided AV systems and internet.  The Introduction and Closing portions of the workshop uses Kahoot polling.  Slides highlight the Presentation portion; connecting to our institutional LMS, eLearn (D2L), provides hands-on activities for the Demonstration and Practice portions of the workshop.  All participants will receive a temporary guest account to our institution’s LMS for hands-on practice and samples.  For those who are unfamiliar with the LMS or prefer alternative means of interacting, paper and electronic version of the activities are available.  Additionally, a link to additional resources housed in Google will allow participants to extend the learning beyond the workshop.

Participants will need their own device (laptop/tablet) with internet access.  During the Practice portion, participants can work individually or in pairs (preferred) to develop a course topic in various eCourse modalities (online, hybrid, CBE).  If desired, participants may also use smartphones during the Introduction and Closing portions of the workshop.

Data and Assessment Information

Recognized as a community college leader in eCourse design and development, Sinclair’s online enrollment is at 40% and continues to rise.  Demand for eCourse development and expansion into various modalities has consistently grown over the last 5 years.  Responding to the emerging needs for flexible design and delivery, we became a best practice model in CBE for the state of Ohio and received full HLC institutional accreditation for all CBE programs in early 2017.  We also formalized the hybrid modality within our college through proven course templates and quality design.  We have multiple examples of courses designed and delivered across the various modalities and can demonstrate how good “ingredients” can be prepared to make various “dishes.”  Participants can view data on the expansion and success of courses via resource links.