The big hurdle in moving a course online is considering how your face-to-face activities
would function in the digital world. Use this F2F-Online Translation Table to guide you through the digital possibilities. And remember, you do not have to
use all the technology available to you. Use what fits your subject and content best.
Using two to three technologies effectively is better than using many poorly.
Translating all your content at once can be a daunting task. Use this Planning an Online Course template to help you think out that process by module/week.
You should also consider consulting with other faculty in your subject area that teach
online. Faculty champions are a great resources for translating something online
that may be very specific to your discipline. They have also been there before.
Ask them, "what do you wish you had known from the start?" If you do not already
know someone, consult with your department chair and/or dean.
Now that you know how you will translate your face-to-face content, take the time
to learn about the digital environment and tools you will be using. Preparation now can save you time and stress later on!
Distance Education's Tech Tools and Resources website has guides (videos, step sheets, and sometimes both) for all of our tools. Resources
like this are really great because they can support you 24/7 and you can learn all
about the tool or search for a specific topic.
- D2L Brightspace, called D2L for short, is the online classroom environment.
- Camtasia is a software based video tool that can be used to create and edit videos for tutorials/how-to/demos,
lessons, presentations, etc. The tool is very robust and has many features. Distance
Education purchases a limited number of licenses each year.
- Examity and Honorlock are both options for online proctoring which is used to improve the academic integrity
and student identity verification for online exams. Contact Distance Education to
help you determine which is best for your needs.
- Snagit is another software based capture tool. It can be used to create videos; however,
the capture and editing features are limited. Snagit's strength is in capturing and
editing screen captures. This is very helpful in creating quick instructional materials.
Distance Education purchases a limited number of licenses each year.
- Turnitin provides tools to deter plagiarism and provide personalized feedback using rubrics
and drag-and-drop, voice, and/or text comments.
- Tutor.com online tutoring helps students one-on-one, 24/7/365 with academic assistance. Instructors
should encourage student use if their course is support and then they can access student
usage data and early alerts.
- YuJa is used to create, host, manage, and edit video and audio files. It can also be used
to store, manage, and share a large spectrum of other digital assets like images,
documents, and more.
- Zoom web conferencing allows for one-on-one and group online meetings using video and/or
audio. It allows for whiteboarding, polls, groups, chat, and screen sharing.
Distance Education offers webinars for the tools listed above. Please check the webinars schedule. If there is no upcoming webinar scheduled for a tool you are interested in, you
can view a recording from the previous session.
Now it is time to move and/or create your course content in the online classroom.
Please refer to the D2L Brightspace resources for general information about adding course content to D2L.
If your D2L course shell is empty, you may consider course combines and course copies.
Course combines allow faculty to manage multiple sections of a course they are teaching
all in one course shell. For example, BIOL 1010-09 and BIOL 1010-12 could be combined
into one place in D2L. Course combines must be performed prior to content being added and students having access to the course.
Request a course combine (opens new window)
Course copies are performed to copy content from one D2L course shell to another.
This could be copying your own course content from term to term or copying course
content between faculty. In order for content to be copied from another faculty member, they need to provide
their permission via email.
Request a course copy (opens new window)
D2L Course Template
A general D2L course template can be imported into your D2L course shell so that you
do not have to start from scratch! The template includes a getting started module
and module outlines. The getting started module contains links to student resources
and place holders for all necessary course information that needs to be included in
an online course. The module outlines are designed to help you create an organized
course that is easily navigated by your students.
The getting started module is also available separately from the whole D2L course
template. If you already have an online course or are using a course copy, you can
still use the getting started module to ensure you are providing complete information
to your students.
Contact Distance Education Support at firstname.lastname@example.org to request the D2L course template or getting started module (stand alone). You
will need to provide the course information (example, BIOL 1010-09 Spring 2020).
As mentioned under Step 1: Planning Your Course, faculty champions are a great resource
and now is another great time to consult with them.
Accessibility deals with making your content usable by your students and is especially
important for students with disabilities. For example, if you have text pages/files
in your course, students should be able to use screen readers to hear the content.
If you have videos/audio in your course, students should have access to the captioning
and/or transcripts so they can read the content. This content diversity is beneficial
to all your students and gives them choices in how they access the content. Accessibility is more than just a good idea; it is part of the Americans with Disabilities Act (opens new window).
Here are some resources to help you with course accessibility:
Communicate with Students
If online is new for you, it might be new for your students too! Make sure you share
plenty of resources with them.
A great place to start is with the D2L course template or getting started module listed
under Step 3: Course Creation. These already contain resources for your students
for student success, technology, library, and more.
Another great resource for students is the Distance Education Introduction to Online Courses Guide. You can share a link with your students in your regular communications, include
it in your course syllabus, and/or add a course link directly in D2L.
Finally, be very clear with students in your course syllabus, schedule, and announcements
about expectations and behaviors for the online environment.
Here are examples you can use or use as a starting point when communicating with students:
Communicate with Us
Distance Education provides resources for you and we love to hear what else you may
need! Make sure you reach out to Distance Education Support with your needs, questions,