Asynchronous courses are a cornerstone of online learning. At the same time, asynchronous courses present challenges in terms of self-motivation, community-based learning, and combating feelings of isolation. One approach to addressing some of these challenges is to add synchronous elements to your online course. When used correctly, synchronous elements can add a layer of direct interaction and engagement that doesn’t detract from the benefits of the asynchronous format. However, adding synchronous elements isn’t as easy as just setting up regular meeting times. We need to plan with purpose, diligence, and a bit of creativity.
Are you nervous about diving into online education? Want to expand your reach beyond your current online course or program? Then join me for a 20 minute interview on online education and advocacy with Dr. Amos Bailey.
Instructional design is a fully-formed, stand-alone professional discipline focused on teaching and pedagogy. It is a proactive, collaborative approach to conceptualizing and creating learning materials, fostering learner community and inquiry, and empowering learners and teachers to make intentional decisions about what and how they learn. That being said, instructional design processes and functions look different at different institutions. Read on to learn more about our instructional design team's philosophy and strategy when working with CU faculty.

One of the adjustments for our team in working remotely is that we have fewer impromptu conversations about current trends or topics in higher education. As part of a move to reconnect and promote scholarly discourse beyond our day-to-day work, several team members decided to participate in a mini bookclub to read and discuss Ungrading: Why Rating Students Undermines Learning (and What to Do Instead), edited by Susan D. Blum.

In online learning it is easy to get distracted by the latest technology. Don’t build your assignments around a tool. Instead, start with the student!
Consider how you can implement small changes in your courses to help improve accessibility and remove learning barriers for all students.
If major portions of your digital courses will take place synchronously, check out these student-focused tips for your course planning.
The last few weeks have been a blur for all of us with the sudden but necessary shift from teaching classes face-to-face to moving everything to remote or online teaching. Hopefully you have had a chance to take a look at the many resources available on the Remote Teaching website that have been compiled and created to help you navigate this unprecedented and overnight migration to online and remote learning.
Life happens. It’s always happened. People get sick. Family members pass. Spouses get divorced. Babies are born. Cars break down. Jobs are lost and gained. Personal and professional lives have always had ups and downs in terms of stressful events.