Manage Course Materials and Delivery
In the event of an interruption, you may need to provide an updated syllabus that modifies the planned course activities, assignments, content and due dates. Once you have established clear communication procedures and pathways, you may want to send updated course materials.
Make sure students know where to find the material: We recommend you post these items on Blackboard: in a discussion forum, upload the syllabus directly to your Blackboard course site, send an announcement. Hosting materials in a centralized location is more manageable than emailing them. If Blackboard proves too technically complex for you or your students, you can create a folder on OneDrive and share materials that way. The simplest solution is to email students new course materials as attachments or links to online resources like videos, websites or podcasts.
Use mobile friendly formats: In a crisis, many students may only have access to a smartphone, so it is best to convert Word documents, PowerPoint slides and Excel spreadsheets to PDF format which can be read on a mobile device. Visit the accessibility webpage and LibraryGuide that provides just in time resources. A new tool was turned on in Blackboard called Ally that allows you to identify and correct accessibility issues in your course content. Ally provides you guidance on how to correct any accessibility issues and automatically creates alternative versions of your files so students can choose the type of file they want that best suits their needs.
Creating Content: While emailing documents and hosting discussion forums are effective methods to provide continuity, they may not prove to be an effective instructional strategy over longer periods of interruption. Panopto, a video hosting tool, enables you to create audio and/or video lectures, record a lecture while capturing both you and your screen or slides and post the video your Blackboard course. Learn how to download and use Panopto. Learn how Panopto enables you to record a lecture while capturing both you and your screen or slides.
Experiential Learning: Some courses have essential components that may be challenging to replicate in an online environment. For example, many courses have lab sections in which students learn to conduct experimental procedures using specialized materials or sophisticated instrumentation. Some architecture, design, construction management, science, or engineering courses may have essential studio components that may not translate well online. And many courses require students to engage in community-based field work in specialized settings. In these cases, faculty should think creatively with their disciplinary colleagues whether elements of these activities can be adapted under the circumstances, alternative activities could be offered using virtual tools, or certain activities could be postponed until the campus returns to standard operation. Please contact LIT at firstname.lastname@example.org if you would like to discuss strategies for some of these experiential learning elements.
Curating Content: Many different multimedia resources are available online so you should not feel the need to create all of the course materials for your students. In the event of an unplanned interruption, you may not have the time to master content creation tools and then create, edit and post content. A good first step is to search Distance Learning Resources for readings, link to websites, and use existing videos, simulations, and podcasts to integrate media into your course. This guide will provide information on electronic databases, eBooks, streaming videos, online guides, and services available to the Wentworth community during the campus closure. Please contact the Library if you have any questions regarding research help or Library services.