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Covid-19 Preparations

As BC shifts away from in-person instruction in light of COVID-19 concerns, many instructors are understandably overwhelmed by the expectation that they continue teaching their courses remotely. The following resources are meant to provide you a starting point for planning your transition to remote instruction, and you can also count on CTE, CDIL, and ITS staff to help you work through the challenges that arise.

Find an ever-growing collection of Emergency Remote Instruction resources, including discipline-specific recommendations, on the CTE’s Resources site. And if you can’t find the information you need there, we’re also compiling an FAQ of additional questions as they come in. See the latest schedule for our Remote Teaching Drop-in Sessions below.

Guiding Principles

Emergency remote instruction is not the same as online learning: Faculty preparing to teach a formal online course can spend six months or more designing it. We have less than a week to prepare for remote instruction at BC. Rather than seeking to create the ideal online course experience for students, keep your focus on simple, “good enough” solutions. 

Build on the structures you already have in place: One benefit we have is that instructors have had nearly two months already to build relationships with students and put course structures in place. Think creatively about ways you can use the existing architecture of your course to guide your decisions about how to continue teaching remotely.

Low tech can be the best solution: It can be tempting to try to reproduce the in-class experience by primarily utilizing synchronous platforms, such as Zoom, but getting all your students online at the same time can be a challenge (some students may lack internet access, some may not have a quiet place to participate from, some may be in a remote zone, etc.). Mixing asynchronous approaches with occasional targeted synchronous discussions can often be a more effective way to engage students.

Revisit your goals: Take a step back to revisit what you see as the most fundamental goals for your course, and give yourself permission to set aside the elements that are lower on your priority list. COVID-19 is forcing us to adapt to less-than-ideal teaching conditions, and so we may have to rethink our educational ideals in the face of it. Decide what’s most important to you and let that guide your decisions.

Center human connection: Experts in online instruction emphasize the importance of connection as essential to remote learning environments. And given the heightened anxiety and uncertainty we are all experiencing at this moment, it’s even more important that we make space to approach each other with compassion and generosity. BC’s commitment to cura personalis becomes particularly salient given the increased isolation we’re all likely to experience in the coming weeks. 

Remote Teaching Drop-In Sessions

The CTE and CDIL are offering online drop-in sessions in the coming week, where you can get targeted support with your remote teaching questions. The current schedule is below (and additional sessions will be added as they are confirmed):

Tuesday, April 7

2:00 - 3:00 pm:  Collaborative Reading and Writing

This session will explore tools instructors and students can use to discuss and interact with texts and documents collaboratively. We will cover Google Docs, Perusall (which allows collaborative annotation of texts), and advanced Discussion Board features in Canvas.

6:00 - 7:00 pm:  Giving Exams with the Canvas Quiz Tool

This session will focus on Canvas quiz functions especially suited to delivering exams, including question types, features to promote academic integrity, and ways to include accommodations for individual students.

Wednesday, April 8

2:00 - 3:00 pm:  Zoom: Best Practices for Engagement

Now that you and your students have met in Zoom, this workshop will provide you with tips and examples to make your Zoom teaching experience more interactive for students, and less stressful for you.

6:00 - 7:00 pm:  Proctorio

CDIL staff will introduce BC’s online proctoring tool, available through Canvas for faculty needing to administer high stakes exams.  The session will cover security options available for instructors, address privacy concerns, and provide information to share with students.

Tuesday, April 14

3:00 - 4:00 pm:  Assessments and Feedback Using the Canvas Quiz Tool

Learn how to set up the Quiz tool in Canvas. We will go over making tests to assess student comprehension, building surveys to gather student feedback, and using publisher item banks. Features to promote academic integrity, as well as ways to include accommodations for individual students, will be covered.

Thursday, April 16

10:00 - 11:00 am:  Proctorio

CDIL staff will introduce BC’s online proctoring tool, available through Canvas for faculty needing to administer high stakes exams.  The session will cover security options available for instructors, address privacy concerns, and provide information to share with students.

Friday, April 17

12:00 - 1:00 pm:  Assignments and Grading

This overview of options for receiving, grading and managing student work online is recommended for anyone new to grading through Canvas.

Wednesday, April 22

2:00 - 3:00 pm:  Assessments and Feedback Using the Canvas Quiz Tool

Learn how to set up the Quiz tool in Canvas. We will go over making tests to assess student comprehension, building surveys to gather student feedback, and using publisher item banks. Features to promote academic integrity, as well as ways to include accommodations for individual students, will be covered.

Friday, April 24

2:00 - 3:00 pm:  Proctorio

CDIL staff will introduce BC’s online proctoring tool, available through Canvas for faculty needing to administer high stakes exams.  The session will cover security options available for instructors, address privacy concerns, and provide information to share with students.

Tuesday, April 28

1:00 - 2:00 pm:  Giving Exams with the Canvas Quiz Tool

This session will focus on Canvas quiz functions especially suited to delivering exams, including question types, features to promote academic integrity, and ways to include accommodations for individual students.

Wednesday, April 29

2:00 - 3:00 pm:  Proctorio

CDIL staff will introduce BC’s online proctoring tool, available through Canvas for faculty needing to administer high stakes exams.  The session will cover security options available for instructors, address privacy concerns, and provide information to share with students.