Division of Academic Affairs
In Part 2 of our series, "10 Things I've Learned About Teaching and Learning Online," Valorie talks about what you need to consider as you develop an online course. Course development takes more time and money than you think.
Hello. I’m Dr. Valorie McAlpin, director of the Center for Teaching and Learning at UNC Charlotte. Welcome to Teaching and Learning Matters. This is a series of podcasts that will feature key lessons learned from my experience in teaching and learning online. Today’s topic is the second in this series, entitled “Course development takes more time and money than you think.”
Whether you’re designing an online course from scratch or transitioning an existing course into the online environment, whether you’re developing a credit course or a non-credit course, there are certain preliminary steps you have to consider as you proceed with course planning and development.
For credit courses, new course proposals generally have to be approved by a college level review committee. After passing the College review, the new course proposal then proceeds to the University review committee which all totaled could be a 4-6 month review process.
If you’re developing a non-credit course, you may want to partner with your Office of Continuing Education and Summer School to provide online registration, marketing and financing. After the administrative approvals are received, content needs to be developed and peer reviewed or existing peer reviewed content needs to be integrated into your content management system. You may also want to consider development of interactive animation exercises, or use of multimedia to enhance learning.
Do you need a teaching assistant to assist with course development and teaching support? Do you need an instructional designer to assist with multimedia development? And what about usability testing/pilot testing and revisions to the course based on this feedback?
If you’re going for the best possible quality that you can afford you’ll want to test your market and revise your course continuously to fit market demand. Which financial model will sustain this effort? Will it be faculty overload, course release or percentage of revenue to the originating department? To adequately address each of these concerns requires considerable time, funding, teamwork, and administrative support.
This ends segment number two of the “10 Things I’ve Learned” series. Thank you for listening and be sure to join us for the next episode, entitled “Management of Interactivity and Feedback.” And remember ... Teaching and Learning Matters.
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