Online Teaching



Advanced Online Competency Development for the Experienced Online Practitioner

For whom is this PD intended:

Once an Online Practitioner* demonstrates mastery of the core online course design and teaching competencies, additional professional development opportunities is necessary for continuous improvement in online course design and teaching practices and will be made available in the form of advanced courses and workshops.

*Online instructor, instructional designer, instructional technologist, multimedia designer, librarian / OER expert.

Experienced Online Practitioners:

There are 3 levels of experience targeted at that Advanced level that will address the continuum of needs for advanced competencies among “experienced online practitioners”.

These 3 PD tracks correspond to the 3 levels of expertise:

  1. Newly experienced online practitioners who want to review, revise and improve their online course design. (Basic)
  2. Online Practitioners that have completed the basic level and want to target improving their online teaching practices, or Experienced Online Faculty that will teach a course from a master course or an Open SUNY powered team designed course. *These are Course Instructors that teach courses that were created by others or that were team developed where the instructor may, or may not have been the SME in the course design. (Intermediate)
  3. Online Practitioners that have completed the basic and intermediate levels and are interested in innovating and taking their online course and teaching practices to the next level with advanced topics in online teaching, learning, course design (Advanced)

We are exploring options for online practitioners who wish accredited online teaching certification, or to pursue an advanced to degree,

Goals/Objectives for this PD:  

  • Provide a continuum of PD paths incrementally advancing online teaching and course design competencies toward the advanced Fellow roles.
  • Support/facilitate a culture of continuous improvement in online teaching practices and the quality of Open SUNY online courses.
  • Establish 3 certificate programs signifying satisfactory completion of professional development tracks to recognize and make skills and accomplishments visible to the community (and within the Open SUNY Online Teaching community of practice)  to promote networking, mentoring, and engagement in the PD process.
    • Establish modularized sub-certificate options.
    • Establish a badging system to gamify professional development and to recognize and make skills and accomplishments visible to the community to promote networking and engagement in the PD process.
  • Provide mechanism for ongoing recertification and continuous improvement.
  • Identify aspiring exemplars and experts.

How we will accomplish this:

Curriculum mind map:

  • A badging system and certificates of completion are envisioned that map to competencies/skills.
  • Research-based templates will be provided for adaptation.
  • Discipline-specific and topic specific effective practices/templates will be available for adaptation.
  • Online course review rubrics will be used formatively and summatively.
  • Faculty development project plans will be developed for use and adaptation.
  • Opportunity to observe exemplar online courses in a variety of disciplines.
  • Opportunities to talk to or gain benefits from the experiences of exemplar faculty.
  • Opportunity to work with an expert online instructional designer.
  • Self-assessment inventories (based on the Community of Inquiry presences) to help faculty identify areas in their course/practice that needs improvement.
  • The Open SUNY Course Quality Review program with opportunities for:
    • Self-assessment
    • Peer course reviewer.
    • Have course peer reviewed.

Competencies are organized into the following broad categories. (Specific skills and workshops/courses will be associated with each category):

  • Course Design (CoI / modularization / consistency / best practices / collaboration with experts)
  • Educational Theory & Pedagogy (Community of Inquiry / andragogy / heutagogy)
  • Content Presentation (Multimedia / student-generated content)
  • Learner Engagement ( instructor-led and learner-led forums / collaboration strategies)
  • Assessment (authentic assessment strategies / rubrics / peer review)
  • Tools and Technology (OER / LMS / integrated tools / social media / web 2.0)
  • Course models  (blended / flipped / self-paced / MOOCs)

Expected Results:

  • Improved instructor and student satisfaction with online learning and online courses (as assessed by Open SUNY survey).
  • Improved perceived learning by students (as assessed by Open SUNY survey).
  • Improved course quality (as assessed by course quality peer reviews / teaching presence survey, etc.)
  • Incremental improvement in course completion rates (as assessed by SUNY reporting).
  • Improved graduation rates for online learners (as assessed by SUNY reporting).
  • online faculty willingness to offer additional courses and recommend online learning to colleagues.(as assessed by Open SUNY survey).

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