Monday, March 1, 2010

What about student evaluations of online courses?

Student evaluation of online courses are conducted using an online survey system controlled by OIR.  Students enrolled in online and hybrid courses receive email messages to their accounts containing a link to the evaluation tool.  There are many views about the effectiveness of these evaluations and the student response rate is typically low.  Faculty members should discuss issues of student evaluation with their department chair and dean.  The Provost has identified student evaluations of online courses as a key issue and committee work is underway to identify solutions.

What is a Course Management System (CMS)?

A CMS is online software that facilitates the management of courses.  At Metro State, we currently use Blackboard Vista for online and hybrid courses.  Blackboard Vista is also available for all courses, including on-campus, and many faculty take advantage of the file sharing, gradebook, and communication tools available within Blackboard Vista.

What is the Greenbook?

The Greenbook is a document that explains how online learning is conducted at Metro State.  It documents policy, procedure, and guidelines found in various areas across the college into a one resource document that is updated as changes occur.

Who builds online courses?

The faculty member assigned to an online course is responsible for the course.  Metro State provides many resources to assist faculty with online course development through the Educational Technology Center.  In addition, some departments combine efforts to build master online sections to ensure consistency and quality of the course and provide a solid foundation for faculty to launch their specific section.

What is the difference between online and hybrid courses?

Online courses are conducted completely online.  If synchronous or on-campus activities are required, then the class should be designated as hybrid.  Hybrid courses combine elements of on-campus and online learning and assessment activities.  Hybrid courses are not easy to define since the combination of on-campus and online activities match each courses pedagogical needs.

I would like to teach an online course, where should I start?

All courses, including those taught online, are assigned by Department Chairs.  Begin a discussion with the chair of your department about your interest in teaching online.  Then, register for the Online Faculty Orientation which is a requirement for all faculty teaching online.  

Wednesday, December 9, 2009


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