Online Class Assignment Guidelines for Deans

These recommendations are from the ICC Online Learning Committee.  The recommendations are resources, are not policy, and are not used to evaluate faculty.  For more information, contact a committee member, the committee co-chairs, Mary Phelps Clayton and Jen Hopp, or the administrative liaison, Patrice Hess.

updated September 23, 2016

We, the Online Learning Committee, want all online classes to be a valuable LEARNING experience for our students. This is a COMMUNITY effort from faculty, administration, and staff. To ensure the INTEGRITY of these courses, guidelines and rubrics have been developed so that faculty can reflect on and improve their own teaching, as well as demonstrate readiness for online teaching. We have a RESPONSIBILITY to the Higher Learning Commission to ensure that our online classes are more than correspondence classes. We believe true online courses have ongoing assessment, evaluation, and interaction. We strive for continuous quality improvement, and our goal is EXCELLENCE – excellence in teaching, excellence in student experience, and excellence in communication.

Online Class Assignment Guidelines for Deans

  • Expectation: faculty member is qualified in the discipline
  • Recommended selection: faculty member expresses an interest in teaching online
  • Recommended experience: 
    • Experience taking an online class as a student
    • Prior experience teaching online; if from another institution, provide a letter of recommendation
  • Recommended preparation (at least one from each category, Technical and Pedagogical):
    • Technical:
      • Blackboard or other relevant/specific learning management system training
      • Demonstration of use of the LMS in traditional classes
    • Pedagogical:
      • Master Online Teacher or other relevant/specific online teaching and learning certification
      • Previous or current involvement with a lead teacher, mentor, or Online Faculty Fellow who can provide guidance in discipline and teaching online
      • Sample artifacts of content to be delivered in an online class
  • Recommended process:
    • First semester, new online teaching assignment
      • Class observation using the QOCI rubric (not a contractual observation but related to the teaching assignment)
    • Ongoing
      • Self-assessment using the QOCI rubric and/or other relevant tools
      • Class observation of online class, when scheduled
      • Drop-in observation, anytime
      • In the case of valid student complaints about the class, mentoring, review of best practices, or other action may be taken
  • Recommended action: Cancel the class section if a qualified faculty member cannot be assigned

See also, Quality Online Course Initiative and Online Teaching Effective Practices