Best Practices for Teaching Online

Time Management Strategies
In this Section

Online Course Facilitation and Time Management

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Time Management Strategies for Online Instructors
A great list of tips and advice from veteran online instructor, Dr. Kay Lehmann.

Checklist for Online Instructors
A checklist of best practices for facilitating online classes compiled by Joan Vandervelde and Jim Erbe.

  • What to do before the class starts?
  • What should be accomplished during the first week of class?
  • What expectations should be met during the class?
  • How to make the most of the last week of class?

Each stage includes checklists for:

  • Managerial Expectations
  • Social Expectations
  • Pedagogical/Instructional Design Expectations
  • Technical Expectations

Sample Late Policy for an Online Class
Clearly defining and communicating a late policy saves faculty time because it eliminates uncertainty about expectations and defines emergencies. These suggested guidelines, based on best practices gathered through experience, serve as an example for adaptation in the course syllabus and will assist in managing the online workload.

Sample Description of Online Office Hours
Tips for spelling out instructor availability, instructor response time in the Q & A discussion forum, and student email communication. Adapted from Kay Lehmann's syllabus.

Discussion Board Etiquette
Kay Lehman and Lisa Chamberlin share tips to promote civility and professionalism on the discussion board to create a great opportunity to express opinions, share ideas, and receive feedback from peers who are engaged in the same learning objectives. 

Online Discussion Rubric
Online discussions present an opportunity for rich and meaningful student learning and interaction. Joan Vandervelde's rubric helps students self-assess the quality of their postings and stresses the importance of active and regular participation to learn course content and make connections between topics. 

Student Expectations and Responsibilities
Online course guidelines to promote collaboration in class discussions with respect and understanding for diverse points of view.

ePortfolio Rubric 
Joan Vandervelde's rubric may be used for peer review or self-assessment.

Blog Rubric
Karen's Franker's rubric addresses blog journaling outcomes with different weightings for each element.

Carnegie Mellon's Eberly Center of Teaching Excellence & Educational Innovation provides helpful resources for assessing team projects.

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