Online, Hybrid, & Blended Course Review Checklist
The Course Review Checklist is used to review all online, hybrid and blended courses prior to the launch of the term to ensure they have the required and essential components of a quality online course. Most courses will be reviewed twice: once before the instructor is added to the course and then again approximately 3-4 weeks prior to the start of the term. Faculty will receive feedback regarding their first review from their hiring manager when the course shell is made available.
My Reports block in Moodle provides valuable information for faculty
If you would like to check:
1) The number of Forums, Graded Activities, Resources: Run Report #305.
2) The elements checked by the Instructional Design team before a course is considered ready for access by students: Run Report #315.
3) The activities posted in your gradebook and the course weights given to them: Run Report #360
The 100-level and 200-level report are useful to run after your course has begun. For more information see Report descriptions.
Guide to Using the GSC Course Review Checklist
- Blocks: In order to maintain consistency among all of the GSC courses, there are a few blocks that are required in all courses. This includes the Instructor Block, Messages, Activities Block and Research Help Block. The Instructor Details block, while optional, is highly recommended to include detailed information about communications preferences, availability to meet with students, expected response time, etc. Other blocks may be added, but it should be considered as to whether they add value to the learning environment or not. Too much clutter can cause as much confusion as not enough information. If possible, blocks should remain in the left-hand side of the course.
- Main Topic Area: The main topic area remains at the top of the course main page. Because it can’t be collapsed or hidden, it is prime “real estate” for important resources and information. However, if there is too much in this main topic area, it forces the students to scroll every time they log into their course in order to get to the desired module. This is especially noticed if they are accessing their course on a mobile device.
–> Syllabus: edit the “Updated” date every time you revise your syllabus.
–> Announcements: use this “instructor only” forum to make regular class announcements. This also creates a sense of instructor presence.
–> Course Resource Documents: This is a folder in which files can be added.
–> General Course Questions & Discussion Forum: This forum is used for general questions or discussions regarding the course. Students can post their questions and the instructor or other students can respond in this public forum.
–> Virtual Student Lounge Forum: This forum is for students to share non-course related conversations.
- Topics/Modules: The Moodle course should have a module for each week of the course. The course format is typically collapsed weekly topics. The module title should be added. The date range is added automatically added. All content in course that is not created by the instructor should be cited and fall under Fair Use in Copyright Protection including articles and images. Content should also follow ADA compliance and Universal Design principles to ensure that is accessible to all.
- Rich Media Content: Rich media is encouraged when it enhances the learning and engages students more with the content and with each other. GSC provides access to some tools such as Kaltura streaming media server and Bb Collaborate web-conferencing. Other Open Educational Resources are available freely on the Web. ADA compliance and Universal Design principles should be considered when using rich media. Instructions and support information should be added if necessary. (Also see Best Practices for Using Video in Your Course.)
- Gradebook: The gradebook should be setup to reflect the grading criteria established in the syllabus. Columns should be organized to facilitate ease of use. See Gradebook Basics.
- Activities & Assessments: Activities and assessments should be setup to facilitate ease of use and navigation. Instructions, expectations and deadlines should be clear.
- Recommendations for Redesign and/or Additional Cleanup: When a course is reviewed comments and suggestions will be provided to improve the overall course design to meet the quality online course standards. Many of these updates can be made easily by the instructor. Others may require additional support of the instructional design team. Instructional design support is available to all GSC faculty by submitting a Support Request.
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