Quality Course Design

Quality Course Design:
Pedagogies, Best Practices, Tools & Techniques

Summer Full Day Workshop - Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Co-sponsored by the Office of the Provost, Office of Information Resources and Technology, and the Drexel Online Learning Council

This full-day workshop is intended to provide pedagogical guidance to support course development, design, and redesign, regardless of delivery method.  Techniques and pedagogies covered throughout the day can be applied to online courses, web supported face-to-face courses, and hybrid courses.  This workshop will also provide guidance and support for faculty who are preparing digital course material for migration to Blackboard Learn.

While IRT will soon be providing training and workshops on how to use the new Blackboard Learn system and how to transfer course materials effectively, this is an opportune time to evaluate, modify, and improve existing courses and course materials before migrating them Blackboard Learn, as well as create new, high quality, outcome driven courses.  This workshop will provide information, pedagogies, best practices, and assessment techniques which can be applied to course design and redesign to ensure the highest quality academic experience for our students. This workshop will address digital objects for use in all types of delivery—totally online, hybrid, and web supported face-to-face classes.

The afternoon will be set up as clinic sessions.  One-on-one assistance will be available to help you apply new tools and techniques and to answer any questions you may have.

Please identify a course you are interested in redesigning and bring with you the syllabus, course description, course outcomes, and the techniques currently used to measure student performance and achievement.

All participants will receive a certificate of completion recognizing your efforts and all respective deans and department heads will be informed of your participation.


8:00- 8:45 

Registration - Behrakis Grand Hall, Creese Student Center


Welcome and Review of the Day


Drexel Quality Initiative - Guides for Structuring a Quality Course

This session focuses on how course design and structure can influence the overall quality of a course. While the emphasis will be on online course design, the content provided in this session is highly applicable to online supported, traditional, and hybrid courses. This session will be divided into three parts:

  • Drexel Student Learning Priorities: Craig Bach will explain how the Drexel Student Learning Priorities Project and the Learner-Centered Syllabus initiative provide a framework for online course structure.
  • Drexel Core Design Elements: Marlin Killen will introduce the new Drexel Core Design Element Checklist and discuss the use of the checklist as a foundation for online course design.
  • Course Design: Scott Warnock will discuss how course design and structure can be used to advance academic excellence in online courses.

A brief Q&A will follow




Assessment Informed Course Design—Objectives, Content, Assessment

This session will provide an overview of assessment in relation to course and curriculum design. The relationship between assessment and learning will be discussed and how assessment tools can be creatively used to enhance instructional delivery and facilitate course design.  The jargon of the assessment field, including such terms as student learning outcomes, performance criteria and rubrics, will be defined. The relationship between assessment and accreditation will be reviewed so that participants can the understand the context of the current in regards to the Middles States Commission on Higher Education and other accrediting bodies.


Accessibility: What It Is and Why We Do It

Federal regulations have impressed upon us the need to design web based materials to be accessible to all students.  It is no longer optional so we all need to care and know how to do it.  This presentation will explain and demonstrate what accessible means and will provide simple examples of what is not accessible and how it can be made accessible.  Dan Allen, Michele Miller, Jenny Dugger will show you how to design web materials for accessibility by those with challenges but also how to make materials more accessible for all students.





EduApps - How to Support  Mobility and Encourage Student Engagement

This session will introduce the EduApps Portal, a Web-based data warehousing system for educational applications broadly modeled on Apple, Inc.’s iPhone applications delivery system.  EduApps are educational applications designed to disseminate and evaluate innovative teaching (instructional, curricular, and assessment) methodologies and teaching support (operational) tools. The proposed EduApps Portal will provide a simple, efficient and effective method for faculty to disseminate and use innovations. By providing proven methodologies for specific issues, faculty will be able to easily download and use new techniques without going through an exhaustive search of the educational literature. In addition, EduApps will be designed with embedded assessment tools, ensuring that evaluation and feedback are part of the approach. The applications can be aligned with currently collected evaluation data (e.g., end-of-term surveys, outcome achievement results, learning styles instruments) to support the intentional use of the EduApps to respond to these data.

Presenters: Don McEachron, Craig Bach, YoungMoo Kim, Adam Fontecchio and Cory Schmitt


Afternoon Sessions

Applying Tools to Support Assessment, Collaboration and Engagement, and Accessibility

Clinics for individual assistance on improving your course. You will choose one of three 2-hour sessions to spend your time on hands-on individual course improvement. You may also move from room to room to address all three areas if you would like.           

Session 1
Accessibility Clinic

 Is your online content accessible to students with disabilities? Much of what you can do to create accessible content is “low-hanging fruit,” requiring only minor changes to your current methods when using popular programs like Word and PowerPoint. Stop by and we will review your online documents with you, and show you how to ensure their accessibility. We will also be happy to review your Blackboard courses and make recommendations to improve accessibility.
Dan Allen and Michel Miller

Session 2
Panel Discussion:  Student Engagement & Collaboration

There are now a myriad of software and web-based tools available for online and on campus instruction, and navigating these resources can be daunting.  This faculty panel will discuss how they are using a variety of these tools to effectively increase student engagement and collaboration.  The discussion will focus on best practices surrounding the implementation, assessment and evaluation of student work through the use of these resources.  Some tools to be covered will be lecture capture, videoconferencing, blogs, wikis, discussion boards, group work, and more.  Cory Schmitt

Session 3
Assessment Tools, Techniques, and Transformation

This is a working session designed to provide one-on-one assistance to faculty instructors to use assessment procedures and tools to facilitate course design. Instructors are encouraged to bring in current syllabi and session facilitators will help them to develop appropriate and measurable learning outcomes, design metrics and/or rubrics and implement various assessments and evaluations.  Learn how to construct minute surveys to employ for formative evaluation from survey research expert Bill Rosenberg.  Mentors will be there for one-on-one assistance in learning how to truly assess student learning, engagement, and performance throughout the learning process.  Craig Bach, Don McEachron, Bill Rosenberg


Refreshments and RAPID Review Focus Group Session--Cory Schmitt

RAPID stands for Research, Assessment and Practice in Distance Learning.  RAPID Review is a web portal of educational resources and services built specifically for use by those in distance, blended and online learning.  RAPID Review was developed by the Goodwin College of Professional Studies and is currently being beta tested with a core set of users.  We invite attendees to a brief focus group where they can learn more about the site and provide qualitative feedback to be utilized for further development of this exciting new resource.