University of Wisconsin–Madison

Preparing for Instruction Spring 2021

Phase 1: Plan Your Course

This is adapted from the Quality Matters™ Emergency Checklist for Remote Instruction and the Design+Teach+Engage website. The most important first step to developing an online course is to plan it. You will need to articulate your desired student learning outcomes and then show how you connect all of your assessments, activities, readings and homework back to those outcomes. Once completed, you have your game plan for the work that you need to do. In addition to helping you see that work, the course map helps to make sure that you are not creating too much work for you and your students.

Action Steps:

Review the information on this page to:

Phase 2: Utilize the WSB Canvas Template

To save you time and to provide a more consistent student experience, the WSB adapted the campus online course template that can be easily brought into your Canvas course to customize for your needs. You may view in the template course as a student here:

Using this template sets students up for success by quickly preparing the environment before students begin work, and orienting them to their new “classroom”. This may include collecting links for technology assistance, setting communication policies, drafting an explanation of what’s different, linking to synchronous meeting tools, and revising the schedule. Doing so helps address the biggest questions students might have, and allays most immediate concerns in moving to remote instruction. Note: It is strongly recommended that you include the WSB Module 0 in the course.

Action Steps:

Utilize the WSB Canvas Template

Phase 3: Edit the ‘WSB Module 0’ from the template

A well-done Module 0 is the most critical element that you can add to your course to provide a quality experience to your students. It can help alleviate stress in your students by helping them understand how to navigate your course. If you invest time in editing this module, you will accomplish most of the checklist items required to have a basic standard of quality for online instruction expected for WSB.

Action Steps:

Edit the template for your course

    • Ask a Technical TA to assist you with editing the WSB Module 0 template by email
    • Edit the WSB Module 0 by opening the various topics within the module, selecting the edit button in the upper right hand corner of the page and focusing on that information which is highlighted in yellow. Additional information on using Canvas is found within the template under “Using the Template”.

Phase 4: Develop a Practical Module Structure for the Remainder of the Course

Just like a good Module 0, the structure of your modules in Canvas is also important for helping students to navigate and understand the course. It should represent what steps students need to take to succeed in the course. It should reflect the effort that you put into your course planning, chunking, and establishing the weekly rhythm from Phase 1.

Action Steps:

Review and consider using the Module Concept #2 template in the WSB Canvas Template. You could create a single page for each week or each day of the week that a module lasts. In this page you would edit and link out to all of the things you want students to read, view, do, and reflect on. There is no yellow highlighted text, but just like any page in Canvas, you click the Edit button to make changes.

Phase 5: Create Instructional Materials, Activities, and Assessments

You will need to learn to record asynchronous lecture material to share with students. You will also need to leverage the tools inside of Canvas to create or link out to the activities that you want students to engage in with the content, with you as the instructor, or with fellow students. This is another place where your course map will provide you with guidance of what to create and the appropriate place to put it in your module structure.

Action Steps:

Learn to record asynchronous lecture material

Learn how to facilitate effective online discussions

Prepare digital assessments

Create an accessible learning environment

Utilize these resources if you have Canvas questions

Contact if you are unable to find solutions

Phase 6: Use a Checklist to Review Your Course

By working through the above phases, you should meet each of the items on the checklist in Action Steps. We suggest that you review this list and think about how well your course meets the item. Another suggestion is to ask a colleague to use the list to review the course and provide feedback to you. A second set of eyes, especially looking at the course through the lens of a student, can provide very meaningful suggestions.

Action Steps:

Download or print this checklist for reviewing your course.

Read the full article at: