Focus on the Essentials: A Flexible Model to Prepare Hundreds of Faculty for Online Teaching in Just a Few Weeks
Concurrent Session 1
Creation of new faculty development programs can be a lengthy process and may be limited to small enrollment. However, circumstances such as the recent pandemic presented the need to quickly prepare large amounts of faculty to teach online. This presentation will explore a model used to quickly create a quality faculty development course focused on the essentials of online teaching, which can be scaled based on individual institutional needs.
Creation of new faculty development programs can be a lengthy process and the resulting programs or courses may be limited to small enrollments. However, circumstances such as the recent pandemic presented the need to quickly prepare very large amounts of faculty to teach online. This presentation will explore a model used to quickly create a quality faculty development course focused on the essentials of online teaching, which can be scaled based on individual institutional needs.
The primary motivation that led to the development of this model -- and resulting professional development course -- was fueled by the current global pandemic and the immediate need to quickly prepare large amounts of faculty to migrate to more flexible formats (online and blended) as needed while also maintaining student access to quality instruction, and to encourage student satisfaction and reduce disruptions (Thompson and Moskal, 2020).
At our institution, faculty need to be credentialed to design and deliver online or blended courses and during the initial impacts of the global pandemic in the spring 2020 semester, 354 faculty (22% of the faculty teaching in the spring term) had not completed any of the existing digital learning credentialing programs (Thompson and Moskal, 2020). Consequently, there was a need to prepare hundreds of faculty members to transition face-to-face courses to quality online/blended modalities as a result of the impacts of the pandemic. However, the existing credentialing programs are also not designed to accommodate large faculty enrollments.
The traditional process for the development of a new faculty development program is typically very arduous and can span very lengthy periods. However, the current global pandemic presented a unique opportunity where inventive practices could be employed to rapidly design quality and successful faculty development courses. Agile practices, which are rooted in effective project management principles, were adapted by a small team of instructional designers to produce a brand-new, quickly-completable faculty development course that would enable hundreds of faculty members to successfully design and deliver new online and blended courses. The model utilized can be summarized into three primary phases – planning, development, and implementation – which was adapted from multiple models for rapid project management and course development (Pappas, 2015; Read, Morel and Hennington, 2015; Trust and Pektas, 2019).
In this presentation, we will explore this model used to develop the new faculty development course. The presenters will focus on the model employed rather than the newly-developed course itself, though the course will also be briefly discussed. Each of the three primary phases of the model will be detailed in the presentation, along with challenges & “lessons learned” as well as outcomes & data. The presenters will also discuss potential modifications for practitioners looking to adopt and implement this model, which can be scaled up or down based on individual institutional needs -- whether faced with a crisis or not.
- Pappas, C. (2015, April 19). The Power Of AGILE Instructional Design Approach. Retrieved from https://elearningindustry.com/the-power-of-agile-instructional-design-approach.
- Read, M., Morel, G. & Hennington, D. (2015). Using ADDIE to Design Online Courses Via Hybrid Faculty Development. In Proceedings of E-Learn: World Conference on E-Learning in Corporate, Government, Healthcare, and Higher Education (pp. 1873-1878). Kona, Hawaii, United States: Association for the Advancement of Computing in Education (AACE). Retrieved July 31, 2020 from https://www.learntechlib.org/primary/p/152238/.
- Thompson, K., & Moskal, P. (2020). Simultaneously Supporting Faculty for Remote Instruction and (Actual) Online Teaching During COVID-19. Retrieved from https://onlinelearningconsortium.org/simultaneously-supporting-faculty-for-remote-instruction-and-actual-online-teaching-during-covid-19/.
- Trust, T., & Pektas, E. (2018). Using the ADDIE Model and Universal Design for Learning Principles to Develop an Open Online Course for Teacher Professional Development. Journal of Digital Learning in Teacher Education, 34(4), 219-233. doi:10.1080/21532974.2018.1494521