Before you decide exactly how to move your course online, try to gather some information from your students about the challenges they anticipate and preferences they have. Take some time also to reflect on your own resources, preferences, and challenges.
Gather information about students’ access to the internet and comfort using the kinds of technology you anticipate using. This can help you make choices and determine what information will help your students make this transition.
Andrea Kaston Tange provides an example of a survey to gather such information. The survey asks about remote access to a computer and internet connection, preferences about how to conduct the course remotely, and concerns about the course and more broadly:
Dennis E. Showalter encourages teachers to collaborate with students to make a backup plan if they don’t have internet access at home.
Amanda Henrichs has shared a handout, “Switching to Online Learning in 9 Days,” which prompts teachers to reflect on their goals and what they already know how to do. Henrichs reminds us that this shift to online learning “requires you and your students to thoroughly shift your intellectual, physical, material, and even emotional frameworks around what it means to learn and to teach.”
Tony Russell’s Service Interruption Readiness Survey for faculty at Central Oregon Community College offers another tool for instructors to assess their level of preparedness and interest in the technological options available.
You and your students may be facing a number of challenges, like access to a computer, access to reliable wifi, access to private space, caring for children and other family members, work responsibilities, unemployment, and more.
As you make decisions about how to handle the remainder of your course, take these challenges into consideration.
Resources for Making a Plan
- A Crash Course for Switching to Online (Amanda Henrichs, handout)
- Please Do a Bad Job of Putting Your Courses Online (Rebecca Barrett-Fox)
- Service Interruption Readiness Survey (Self-Assessment) (Tony Russell, Central Oregon Community College)
- Considerations for Instructional Continuity (Graduate Center, CUNY)
- An Equitable Transition to Online Learning – Flexibility, Low Bandwidth, Cell Phones, and more (Lindsey Passenger Wieck)
- Going Online in a Hurry: What to Do and Where to Start (Chronicle of Higher Education)
- HASTAC Thoughts & Resources for Those About to Start Teaching Online Due to COVID-19 (Jacqueline Wernimont)