A Successful Faculty Development Program for Effective LMS Implementation

Concurrent Session 5
Streamed Session Blended Blended

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Session Materials

Brief Abstract

This session discusses the results and experiences of a successful faculty development program for the use of LMS with an innovative training approach using the TPACK model to build faculty technical skills and pedagogical knowledge while remaining contextually relevant to their discipline. The session goal is to showcase evidence-based approaches for improving instituionally mandated faculty development efforts.

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Extended Abstract

The most significant investment educational institutions invest in to support teaching and learning is the Learning Management System (LMS). Expenditures on LMS’s include vendor licensing, initial installation, training system administrators, administrator salaries, migration costs (from other systems, resource costs stemming from technicians, size of migration, and time), faculty development sessions (orientation for new users, continuing development as features added or changed), instructional designer salaries, and so on. Yet, for all the investment dollars institutions make, use of LMS features is inconsistent among faculty. To explore this claim and seek an approach to a solution, this session presents a successful faculty development program for effective use of LMS using the TPACK Model*.

Source: http://tpack.org/

Figure 1. Technological Pedagogical and Content Knowledge (TPACK) MODEL

The need is to train faculty not only on how to use the LMS tool but also to integrate it with their pedagogy and subject matter. The training approach uses the 3 pieces of the TPACK model (Technology, Pedagogy, and Content) to develop asynchronous modules (for faculty to complete), perform workshops, develop instructional materials, and software applications. 

This presentation will discuss the experience and share data on a faculty development program that took place at Southern California University of Health Sciences (SCUHS) over the entire Fall 2020 term. This program was an effort to help faculty at this institution train on the LMS and use it effectively due to the remote teaching situation (COVID-19). The goal was to help faculty make effective use of LMS in these unprecedented times and also use the same when we get back to normality (after COVID-19) in a blended approach. This faculty development program involved faculty to participate in asynchronous modules designed on each feature of an LMS (sample Canvas). This program involves effective use of Canvas LMS. But the same strategies and faculty development approach could be used for any other LMS for any institution. The faculty development program was titled as ‘Optimizing Canvas for Student Learning.’ It was initiated/started on August 17th, 2020 and will end on December 18th, 2020. It involves asynchronous training using 8 modules on Canvas LMS. Each module was spread across 2 weeks and required 1 hour per week from each faculty to complete the activities. Each module thus required 2 hours overall spread over 2 weeks to complete all the activities related to the LMS feature. See list below.

Hands-on workshops also took place on the side for those faculty who were not very technologically savvy. For faculty who participated in the hands-on workshops did not have to complete the activities in the asynchronous modules.

Schedule for all the asynchronous activities for all the modules: 

Module 1 (Aug 17th- Sep 6th, 2020): ‘Pages’ feature in Canvas LMS

Module 2 (Sep 7th- Sep 20th, 2020): ‘Quizzes’ feature in Canvas LMS

Module 3 (Sep 21st- Oct 4th, 2020): ‘Assignments’ feature in Canvas LMS

Module 4 (Oct 5th - Oct 18th, 2020): ‘Discussions’ feature in Canvas LMS

Module 5 (Oct 19th- Nov 1st, 2020): ‘Rubrics’ feature in Canvas LMS

Module 6 (Nov 2nd- Nov 15th, 2020): ‘Modules’ feature in Canvas LMS

Module 7 (Nov 16th - Nov 29th, 2020): ‘Homepage’ feature in Canvas LMS

Module 8 (Nov 30th- Dec 13th, 2020): ‘Canvas Studio’ feature in Canvas LMS


Schedule for Hands-on Workshops:

‘Pages’ Feature- Tuesday, September 1st, 2020 12 pm to 2 pm

‘Assignments’ Feature- Friday, October 2nd, 2020 12 pm to 2 pm

‘Modules’ Feature- Friday, November 13th, 2020 12 pm to 2 pm

‘Canvas Studio’ Feature- Friday, December 11th, 2020 12 pm to 2 pm


You can access the Faculty Development Timeline here and the Welcome Letter here


The session will present the details on the faculty development program and share data on the following:

  1. How it helped faculty improve the use of LMS for their remote/blended teaching 

  2. Faculty growth in pedagogical knowledge and development

  3. Institutional data on effective use of LMS

  4. Quantitative data on faculty training completion, time, reviews, feedback, and use of LMS

  5. Qualitative data on faculty responses, discussions, reflection notes, feedback and so on. 

  6. Qualitative and Qualitative data to demonstrate the success at the institutional level.

This presentation is intended for Academic Administrators, Design Thinkers, Instructional Support Staff, Faculty, Training Professionals and Educational Technologists. This presentation can be helpful to schools who are moving from one LMS to another and also those institutions who struggle to motivate their faculty to use their LMS effectively. The same faculty development approach can also be used to help faculty move towards a blended teaching and learning approach. This program prepares faculty rigorously on how to develop their course on Canvas that can help them design their courses for a blended/hybrid modality that involves combination of teaching online and traditional face-to-face. It can also prepare faculty to design their courses for a combination of asynchronous and synchronous teaching modalities. 

See Explanation of TPACK Model fitting for faculty/teacher development

During this presentation, I plan to engage my audience by doing a question & answer session, providing a link to the training program, and share the qualitative and quantitative data that shows faculty experiences. They will also be provided templates for faculty development approach and timelines for effective LMS training using the TPACK model. They will also be asked to share their own faculty development plans/implementations and how they intend to apply this training at their own institutions. This presentation is unique and valuable since it employs a novel and innovative approach using the TPACK model for a faculty development program on the usage of LMS effectively, a strategy that has not yet been tried. It is valuable to faculty and training designers in the field of education. With the help of this presentation participants will be able to think of an LMS from a pedagogical point of view and be more creative on how to use it when teaching their subject matter. Participants will be able to use this approach for faculty development at their own institutions. Personally, I seek to help Higher Education Institutions with faculty development efforts.


Learning Outcomes:

By the end of this educational session, participants will be able to:

  • Apply the TPACK model for LMS training at their own institutions
  • Use data on usage and effectiveness from faculty to design and develop faculty development programs and LMS training models at their own institutions
  • Design and Develop faculty development programs for effective LMS implementation at their own institutions
  • Connect and network with interested colleagues to collaborate on faculty development plans that integrate the TPACK model

Outline of the session:

Question & Answer Session/Discussion- Are faculty at your institutions making effective use of LMS? How do you train your faculty on how to use LMS? Is your training effective? (5 minutes)

Introduction/Learning Outcomes/TPACK Model/Past experiences with this training technique that worked and from where the idea was originated and developed (5 minutes)

Present samples of training material- Link to a repository with demos, slides, workshop models, faculty professional development timelines, and Canvas LMS course shell that present the training approach using the TPACK model. All the details related to the Faculty Development Program will be presented

See a brief sample here: https://tinyurl.com/tpacklms 

Note the tiny url link above presents/explains the TPACK model approach to train on LMS for this submission. The repository link on the day of the presentation will include the entire LMS training on the Canvas LMS course shell. Dummy accounts will be created on the school Canvas website and participants will be able to walk over and browse the training modules on Canvas implemented for this faculty development program. They will also get access to workshop slides and recordings. 

(5 minutes)

Share Data- Results of faculty participation, usage, experience, and the increase in the use of LMS will be shared. All data that demonstrated the success of the program will be shared. Problems that were anticipated and areas that could be improved upon if the same program was to be implemented again will also be shared. (10 minutes)

Application Activities- A Faculty Development Template (with a timeline) will be shared that will have an outline of the key aspects that need to be involved for effective LMS training (using the TPACK model) to increase its effective usage. Participants will be asked to brainstorm plans for their own institutions for such a training using this template. This activity will be done individually or in groups of two.

(15 minutes)

Audience Reflection Discussion on how this approach can be implemented in their institutions. (5 minutes)


*Sources (Also See List of all References): 

Mishra, P., & Koehler, M. J. (2006). Technological Pedagogical Content Knowledge:  A new framework for teacher knowledge. Teachers College Record 108 (6), 1017-1054.

TPACK.ORG. (2020). TPACK Explained Retrieved June 1, 2020, from http://tpack.org/