Try our checklists with detailed recommendations to help you stay on track while your prepare your courses.
Start by watching this video or for more extensive information visit our Start Strong: Build Your Online Course, which has resources instructors of all levels will find useful. You'll learn the basics of course design. The design approach called Backward Design is introduced. This is just one of many design models. It's a good place to start for many instructors. Three important questions are discussed and they are designed to get you started quickly!
Backward design refers to a way of designing a course or lesson, where you start from from the end your course. You consider your learning goals or the "big ideas" - what your students will know at the end. Then working backwards, you consider what will demonstrate that your students have achieved those goals. And finally, you develop your course assignments, readings, lectures, activities, assessments and other content to support your students' achievement. Wiggens & McThighe's course design template is a great place to start designing your course.
Bowen, Ryan S., (2017). Understanding by Design. Vanderbilt University Center for Teaching. Retrieved from https://cft.vanderbilt.edu/understanding-by-design/.
The first step in designing your course is to know where you are going.
Your course goals take the very general course description and fill it out. At this stage,focus on the goals or learning outcomes. Sometimes goals and objectives are confused. The table below illustrates the differences.You'll get to the objectives later.
Course Goals or Learning Outcomes
Students will understand the effects of healthcare policy on health outcomes.
Writing may include objectives such as:
Identify the author's argument, enlisting appropriate evidence, and organizing paragraphs.
Problem solving may require
Define the parameters of the problem and choose the appropriate formulas.
Anderson, L.W., & Krathwohl (Eds.). (2001). A Taxonomy for Learning, Teaching, and Assessing: A Revision of Bloom’s Taxonomy of Educational Objectives. New York: Longman.
Bloom, B., Englehart, M. Furst, E., Hill, W., & Krathwohl, D. (1956). Taxonomy of educational objectives: The classification of educational goals. Handbook I: Cognitive domain. New York, Toronto: Longmans, Green.
How to Write Learning Objectives for Online This site compares objectives to goals, describes the importance of objectives, and explains the components of a well-written objective.
The Objective Builder This tool offers a step-by-step "fill in the blank" wizard that guides the user through the process of writing learning objectives.
We assess in order to understand how and what our students are learning, and where there are still muddy points or confusion. Authentic assessment is built into your course or lesson right from the start, and is based on your learning outcomes. (See also Teaching Resources tab Language of Teaching section.)
Student-created TED Talk
We're here to partner with you in reviewing the components, structure, and pedagogical design of your online course. We'll work with you and conduct an in-depth review and provide course-specific recommendations for you. Send a request via ticket (select Instructional Support from the menu) or send an email and ask for Course Quality Review.
Custom course review: A custom course assessment can be requested for any online course. An Instructional Designer will be assigned to the course and provide a detailed analysis using the MCPHS Course Quality Review (CQR) evaluation tool. After the review is complete, an instructional designer will meet with you to review the report and discuss targeted recommendations if you'd like. You'll receive the full report. Get the details!
How to Write a Syllabus - It's more that a checklist. from the Chronicle of Higher Education
MCPHS Ally and Content Accessibility resources. Ally is built into your Blackboard courses and is easy to use. It's the fastest way for you to ensure your course documents are accessible.
Web Accessibility Evaluation. This tool allows you to type in a web address, including a Blackboard course, to identify accessibility problems. It identifies the type of issue and the degree of importance. (To securely test your Blackboard course, use the WAVE browser extensions.)
Selecting font size for PPT presentations. Learn what size fonts are best suited to your application.
Hyperlink Usability: Guidelines For Usable Links. Learn best practices for writing discernable links.