2017 Digital Pedagogy Summer Institute –
By Jaya Kannan, Former Director, Digital Learning
Institute focuses on Course Design
The Office of Digital Learning ran the annual Digital Pedagogy Summer Institute from May 15 to 19, 2017 in partnership with faculty advisors and Academic Computing. The topic of the Institute this year was “Effective Course Design.” Faculty participants could choose to work on a new course or redesign an existing course and anchor their work to face-to-face, blended or online contexts.
Our inaugural Digital Pedagogy Summer Institute was held in June 2014. With 30 participants, including two international visitors from ITT Ireland, this was the largest cohort within the last four years. Attendees included faculty from all the five colleges, one faculty from the English language Institute and three staff from the academic support services. This faculty development program was open to full time and part-time faculty.
The core facilitation team comprised of the staff from the Office of Digital Learning, Faculty facilitators, and colleagues from the Academic computing team in IT.
What are the Elements of Course Design?
An important contribution to the planning and implementation of this Institute was the materials development for this course. We created useful resources called ELEMENTS OF COURSE DESIGN and showcased it on the SHUsquare website.
We identified the following as the TEN elements of Course Design:
The value-add for faculty was that for each of these elements, there was a concrete example from the work of SHU faculty. This served a dual-purpose – 1) it showcased the innovative work of our faculty work and 2) provided models of effective course design practices to the Institute attendees.
Conceptual topics combined with Concurrent sessions
For the morning sessions, the weeklong Institute focused on an important topic related to Course Design every day. The topics were:
Day 5 – Self-assessment and Next steps for Applying in the classroom
In alignment with these thematic topics for the day, faculty could select topics from concurrent sessions for the 10.30am to 12pm sessions. The concurrent sessions were more hands-on and interactive and introduced faculty to emerging pedagogies, new technologies and highlighted key features from the Blackboard LMS. For example, workshop sessions focused on Building a Community of Inquiry using Flipgrid, Accessibility features in the Blackboard LMS, and Podcasts for feedback.
Independent work in the afternoons
After the activities during the morning that promoted several opportunities for peer discussions, the afternoons allowed faculty to work independently on their course design work. Faculty facilitators were available for collaborative discussions. Digital Learning Student Assistants served as the go-to people if faculty wanted to learn about new digital tools. Faculty attendees stated in the survey responses that the Digital Learning Student Assistants played a vital role in their learning experience that week.
Program Outcome - Exhibition style presentation
The weeklong institute ended with participants presenting their projects on the last day in an exhibition-style sharing session. Examples of innovative teaching practices presented included blended course design for MBA, game-based teaching for digital marketing, video-based teaching materials for the social work online program, and audio podcasts for Sociology etc. To view selected projects from the 2017 Summer Institute, please click here.