Inclusive teaching is always important, but it is especially urgent during times of uncertainty and increased stress. The move to remote learning can be an opportunity to look at your course with fresh eyes and identify ways to prioritize inclusion and make your course more welcoming to a diverse range of learners. I’ve collected a few strategies to consider.
At CITT, we aim to help subject matter experts (SMEs) create courses they will be proud of. We spend up to a full semester working with each SME, meeting regularly to review materials, provide feedback, schedule recordings, and coordinate building the site in Canvas. It’s not unusual for an ID to spend up to 80 hours on one course, but this is often dwarfed by the time many SMEs invest when bringing a course to life.
The fall 2020 semester start date has been pushed to August 31, 2020, giving instructors approximately two months to design courses in formats suitable for safe delivery during the pandemic. I have been impressed with the response from several offices on campus that have offered their support to instructors—from eLearning Support’s (eLS) instructor help and Zoom guides, to Center for Instructional Technology and Training’s (CITT) workshops and consultations, to Center for Teaching Excellence’s (CTE) #NoWallsTeaching movement—even from a distance, we’ve remained connected!
Imagine trying to make a good first impression on 9,000 students and families! New Student and Family Programs (NSFP) is tasked with this every year when they offer UF Preview, a two-day new student orientation. In response to COVID-19, NSFP had just four weeks to redesign and build UF Preview in an online environment and deliver it to all Freshmen, PaCE, and Transfer students and their families.
How do you facilitate and assess reading in your classes? If this tends to be a struggle, you might consider a collaborative eReader, Perusall, that lets students mark up their assigned readings with questions or comments and auto-grades their participation.
As learning happens remotely to keep us safe, Zoom has been a lifeline that allows us to connect in real time. Zoom is an especially useful tool to convert lecture or discussion heavy courses to an online environment, but it can be hard to keep students engaged when human interaction is mediated through a screen. Here are some engagement strategies to consider as you plan your Zoom conferences.
Traditional video production requires equal amounts of artistry and technical wizardry--not to mention years of experience, access to high-end filming equipment, and a team of crew members gathered to make it all happen. So, what do you do when all of those elements are off the table? Over the past few months, our team has attempted to build a working model for remote recording to safely produce high-quality video content.
Adapting services to support the University of Florida’s nearly 6,000 faculty and 57,000 students in a remote teaching environment in the span of a single week required a deep dedication to instructional excellence, commitment to collaboration, and a willingness to try something new.
Wow, what a semester we have had this spring! It has been a semester marked with change, uncertainty, but ultimately, adaptation and perseverance. Despite our sudden shift to remote work and classes, the Gator community has pulled through by adapting new technologies and techniques to continue our work toward student success.
…and into the fire. We all know the expression…and transitioning a course to online quickly is a challenge, there’s no denying it! CITT typically plans an entire semester to develop an online course, so we understand that many instructors are feeling enormous pressure to adapt quickly to teaching online due to COVID-19. That’s why I’m writing to explain a couple of ways we are here for you.
We’re excited to introduce you to our new website that represents all four services offered by the Center for Instructional Technology and Training: Academic Media Production, Instructional Design, Training, and Web & Graphic Services.