Building an Ecosystem of Supports for Higher Education Faculty


>>– and faculty. So I want to tell you what we’ve done at our institution. My name is Tammy Waldron and a senior Instructional Designer and have been with the institution for 6 and a half years so I’ve really seen this evolve over time so I want to share everything that we’ve done at our institution today so you can hopefully take it home and repurpose it or revise it to meet your needs. I will point out that I do have 60 slides but I’m not about death by PowerPoint. I am here today to share resources, so we’re not going to spend a lot of time on things, we will go kind of quickly on some things then stop and have some moments for conversation as well. So, these are the key components of my presentation. Of the things that we built at my institution, um, we have the QM implementation plan, we have a master course system, which has a course template. We also are a part of the Ohio QM consortium; we have instructional design support in-house which faculty development stems from and we also have now started to embed our policies and procedures to have QM established and kind of sprinkled throughout those. So, I just want to get a pulse, out of those items which are the most important or most interesting to you today? So I can kind of judge how much time I spend on each of these things.

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>>Is there a limit on the number of people that can get into your Nearpod?>>Not that I’m aware of.

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>>[Off mic]>>I’ve gotten a few comments.

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>>I wasn’t aware of that. So I apologize. For those in the room you can just share out —

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>>And I’m sharing my screen for all the remote people, so they don’t need to access it unless they want to answer the poll themselves.

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>>Okay. Okay. Thank you. Faculty development, master course system and instructional design seems to be top hits, so I’ll make sure to spend some time to talk about those things. So moving on, about my institution. We’re super tiny. We have a long history though. We were established in 1902 and we’re a part of the Christ hospital network. So we started as a nursing certificate program and then in 2006 we became a college and, two year college and 2015 we became a 4 year institution. And this is information from last spring than fall we launched a new program as a face-to-face program for medical assistants and we have about 35 students that are launching that program. So we’re predominantly face-to-face and we’re pretty small. This is our course offerings per year. We offer around 102 classes and 42 of those are online So we do have two online programs in our RN- BSN program and we have some online offerings for our RN-BSN students as well and our graduation rates at 150 percent the program length is 90 percent and our retention rates are also really high. You can learn more about our institution by going to our student outcome’s web page. I’ve shared these Google slides on my presentation information so you can come back to this as a resource. So just curious, what size of an institution are we working with in the room and online? I have some big people in the room. Kind of a sprinkling. Interesting. Okay, well as I said I’m from a tiny place, but I think that if you are in a large place you might be able to still utilize some of my resources, hopefully and repurpose them for your institutions. So when we launched our RN to BSN program it was a hybrid and we implemented an internal QM implementation plan right away. We had our administration supporting QM and that’s pretty much the foundation of what we wanted to start this program with. We hired an institution, not an institution, a company to help us build a master complete system for this program and then once that was completed it helped it launch really quickly then we hired instructional designers to manage that ongoing. So, our implementation plan has kind of evolved over time. And it started just being internal and now it’s official with QM and it continues to grow over time, but I am curious, like, where are you guys at in your implementation plan? Are you precontemplation, are you contemplating it? Are you preparing for it? Are you in the action phase? That’s where I think that we are at. Kind of in between action and maintenance at this point in the game. So here’s another poll for you about whereabouts do you think that you are. You guys can share out — you can share out online or we can share out with our voices.

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>>[Off mic] I’m also working with a nursing department RN to BSN and we’re hoping the RN to BS is the first program that becomes certified. So we’re going to try to do it coinciding with the accreditation which is in 2021 so obviously it lends itself. So that’s our goal. So we’re ramping up in 2020. I just finished designing all 11 courses this year and so, by the time it gets to 2021 we will be in the third or fourth session for those courses.

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>>Super. Yeah. Nursing programs are excellent because Quality Matters is a great quality assurance tool to use and it’s great for accreditation purposes. And I’ve found nursing faculty are really on board for high standards. Anyone else want to share? We’re kind of all over the map. Good. All right. So this is kind of basis of our implementation plan. This is what we started with. All online faculty are going to receive QM faculty development with the APPQMR and as we got approved at the state to do an IYOC now I allow both, either/or as their foundational QM training. And in 2007 we moved from internally reviewing to officially reviewing. As the school grew and we had more online classes it became really hard to do internal reviews, and the time it took to do that. And it’s so easy being a part of the Ohio consortium, to do officially reviews through the bartering system. I will talk more about that a little later. We decided to move in that direction and it’s going really well. So we offer a QM workshop every May and upon request. So it’s not very often to some big institutions but we’re so small we have 40 faculty, 80 total and that’s meeting our needs. And then in addition, we are surrounded by institutions that are part of the consortium and our membership we can go to those for free. So anytime there are some in the region I share that with my faculty so they can go. And we have 100 percent. 100 percent of our online faculty have taken Quality Matters training and it’s required for our full-time faculty but it’s optional for our adjuncts and we still have high numbers for our adjuncts going through Quality Matters training ago well. In addition, like I showed you earlier we’re predominantly face-to-face and we have face-to-face faculty going through QM too. So I think that speaks highly to how much we honor and value the QM training and the process at our institution. So we started official will he views in 2018 with the goal of doing 2 a semester. And we currently have 9 courses officially have met QM standards. Last spring it’s gaining traction, so we received requests to actually complete 4 in the spring and summer. So it’s word of mouth and gaining traction. So some of our internal initiatives and incentives for doing the QM review, we have a QM website that has our own personal success stories. So everyone who goes through an official review process we invite them to write up a story to share out how that process impacted them. And we also were highlighted in August in the QM newsletter, which some of the success story quotes were put into the newsletter. So professor Ryan states I must admit I was nervous going into the QM review process, while I had gained a lot from my experiences in previous QM workshops, I was nervous about those items translating into a review of a course that I had designed. I’m still surprised by how much I’ve learned through the QM process. And Professor Kielmeyer states preparing my life expand development course is the kind of deep work that helps me grow as a professor. Because the rubric is based on standards, I knew the specific goals I was aiming for. The process required lots of work, but it wasn’t frustrating. From my experience Quality Matters is the kind of essential reflection best practices and review from expert educators that truly improves teaching and learning. This lifespan development course now provides a better learning experience at the college and I have a more clear and organized way of approaching online course design. In addition to that we also send out a college wide email in the alumni newsletter, they get a QM mark on their office name plate and we give them their certificate framed and put the QM mark in their course banner then one of the biggest incentives is student feedback. So, we have students emailing their professor out of the blue to tell them your course is really organized well. I know exactly what I’m doing. I’m having such a good experience with how you’ve designed this course. Which is like we don’t prompt that feedback. It’s just what students are reaching out to tell us. So, that lets us know we’re on the right path. This is an example of what our banner looks likes. We use Blackboard. And the courses that have gone through QM we keep those open, so we have a master template system and our faculty share openly with each other. So, once they share out, they’ve gone through the QM review process, other faculty are asking, can I see your course so we get them logged in so they can see the examples and then they can learn and grow from that, which is really awesome.
>>Are all your online courses have to go through QM certification?
>>That is in our implementation plan and we’re working towards that. Yep. Good. Any other questions before I move on? Okay. This is an example of one of our templates. This is for our HCA program. Healthcare administration program. So, I spoke that we originally hired a company to build our template for us and as we have gotten more and more reviews and we’ve reviewed internally then we have improved that template. So, when one course goes through an official review it actually impacts the template institutional wide. And every class, face-to-face, and online uses the template system. So even our face-to- face courses are using a robust template.
So this is an area where I’m going to go really quickly because I know you can’t see this information but I wanted it so you can go back and look at this as a resource, see some examples of what we do in our courses to embed Quality Matters in to the template, so that the faculty can then focus on content and have that in place to know that they’re meeting those standards. So, we have a start here page and then we also encourage faculty to send out a welcome announcement. In the start here we have several sections that go into making the instructions clear and where to find the course components. And then also the required technology skills that our students need to be successful. This page is another easy place to hit a lot of the QM standards. So you can come back and look at this as a resource. This is one area of the — let’s see. The grading policy was one area that came up a couple of times in our QM reviews that we were able to really learn from. We have categories and percentages in how we grade our students overall in the course and our reviewers in multiple courses kept saying you need to add the points to — the points don’t actually add up to the percentages so that’s why we left them out. Especially like — well I mean our face-to-face courses in the nursing courses they’re high stakes and they have a lot of assignments that aren’t worth a lot of points, but I value that and it’s an example is present there for you to look back at. Yeah?
>>[Off mic] — any of these pages or is it something that you send back to the Instructional Designer?
>>Um, the question, the full question was are faculty able to edit these pages. Absolutely. It’s a guideline for the faculty. There are certain links that are institutional that don’t impact the college, the course or the content. So if I scroll back — we ask that they keep some of these in, like faculty information, we ask that they have communication policy in the support items, help with tutorials, help with accessibility, college policies and procedures and student resources. So, those are part of our institutional template that stay consistent throughout and there’s really no course content information in there. It just aids their students. So we don’t get push back on that at all. There’s tons of academic freedom in implementing a course template because it’s the course content and how you teach that material and what you’re teaching is where that comes in.
>>Just a quick question on that. Do you have issues with faculty like accidentally depleting some of your components or altering them? I do know there’s been concerns with templates at our campus with making things that might be too complicated that if they alter them in some way, they can’t unalter them. So I was curious if you have certain kinds of instructions or if that’s an issue you’ve run into.
>>I was going to get to that in a little while but that’s okay I can talk about it now too. We’re tiny so they can come to my office if they have a problem. But all of our courses have a template and the live courses are copied from that. If they accidentally delete something, they can go back to the original one to see what was done. The question is did they know they did it or not. And that’s an area of concern for fuss too because we’re not in there monitoring and there’s no tracking system to know if something got deleted or something didn’t get deleted. So, we do have a course lead system where lead faculty is in charge of the course and then they help mentor and guide other faculty that are teaching their courses, because that’s another huge area of concern for deleting a master template program is that it’s kind of confusing to get a class that you haven’t developed and what do you do and if you get it late or even if you get it early still it’s a lot of information to know and what do you do and what don’t you do? So we have provided guiding support resources to help people with that that I’m sharing with you today, in addition there’s that mentorship piece. That is an area of becoming an area of concern for us too as we grow. So there are certain courses that are general EDs and because we don’t have a lot of faculty, um, there’s not a designated course lead for every single one of that little pocket of courses. And so some of our adjuncts who have been teaching over and over again then they become more familiar with the courses as they teach but that’s something that’s on our radar that we really need to get a handle on. Because then you can be giving courses out that actually aren’t ready. Uh- huh. Good questions. Any other questions? All right. As I said we have college policies and procedures that links to our college catalog and we put in privacy and accessibility policies that are applicable to the institution and we do ask that the faculty put in ones that are in addition to their courses. So these are examples from my course. I teach with Pearson, so I have added those here. And this is an example of our module page. So these things do come in the template and if faculty don’t take out the instructions then that could be awkward. You know, I mean it sometimes happens or they forget to hide things so it’s really important to have that mentorship and that training and we are fully accessible, the instructional design staff help the faculty through that. Some faculty, we have a spectrum of faculty that work. Some will fully functional and do everything by themselves and some are not, and we do everything for them and that’s job security for us. And it’s our role, it’s our purpose. So sometimes faculty come and say I’m so sorry I’m asking you to do this. I’m like, that’s my job. My job is to help you be the best faculty member that you can be. So, please, ask me for help. And it’s better when you ask me for help ahead of time than after because then we can avoid problems with students or whatever. So, we have module introduction, the learning outcomes, what the students are supposed to do and then learning activities with the links out to the tools as typical for our modules.
And again every course has a faculty information page where we can share out our communication policies, how to contact us, when our office hours are, et cetera. We’re currently running Blackboard SAS which is the old learn platform. We have top tabs. We are going to be moving to the Ultra platform maintaining our learn classrooms. So I’m not exactly sure what that will look like. I’m not sure if you’ve done that, if you have please talk to me because I’m curious how that worked out for you. I’m hoping that it can work. So right now, we have a lot of QM standards met by our top tabs, those are going to go away. So we have our help to technology help and also accessibility link that students can go to to get directly to our student support services. We have a whole page dedicated to what they can do to be successful and what they can reach out to. So we have a student support services called impact that’s 24/7 help for them and impact has informed us that our students use their — utilize their services more than any other institution. So we’re doing a really good job at sharing that information with our students. And overall, having a consistent template just minimizes cognitive load for your students. So as they go from course to course, they know where to get information and they don’t have to relearn the system. It’s so helpful. And we’ve received that feedback from our students. And I think it takes out cognitive load from faculty as well because they don’t have to think so hard about what they’re doing, but how they’re going to do it.
>>[Off mic] —
>>Hold on let’s get the mic so the people remote can hear you. Thank you.
>>Have you tested your template in mobile? And do your students use mobile? Some of the graphics upload differently in mobile?
>>SAS buffered learn doesn’t play nice with mobile devices, that’s why we’re moving to the Ultra and now Blackboard doesn’t work nice with that. That was part of the company that we hired. So there are some things we’re going to have to change and we’ve been working to change some of those things that the company provided for us. There was some accessibility issues that they provided that got kind of —

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>>[Off mic] >>Uh-huh, the company that provided the template? Uh-huh. So we’ve been kind of cleaning those up over time too. Yeah.

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>>So you have really nicely identified in the parts of your template what standards are met. Do you relay that to your faculty? Do they know bit by bit what the template?

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>>I think we can do a better job at that. Because everyone’s taken the APPQMR, I think we have assumption that is they know what’s going on. But I think that’s an area that we can really grow, and I’ve learned some things here this week that I’m going to take back. So, that’s excellent feedback. Other questions?>>There’s one from — how do you get faculty buy-in across different departments and how — I guess –>>I’m not sure I understand the question. How do we get buy in?

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>>For the faculty to do this work, I believe.

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>>Just in general, just to adhere to the master template?

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00:27:54,666 –>00:27:57,999>>You can skip it.>>Okay. Well I can still speak to that because we don’t have a problem with that. Um, I think our faculty recognize that this is better for the students. We are a teaching institution and I think they appreciated the help. When we launched the RN to BSN we moved from angel to Blackboard so when we used and gel it was a repository of documents, it wasn’t a learning management system or online course with information and faculty just didn’t really know what to do or how to use it so they looked to us as experts in helping them to best design their courses and they really just came on board. And we didn’t necessarily force the face-to-face faculty to utilize this template in their course. It’s not mandatory. But they wanted to do that because it’s a great template and why not follow that and make it best for their students as well? It helps them organize their content and we — even our fully face-to-face courses use an online platform a lot because we have our students doing assignments before class to come prepared and after class when they leave. So, we definitely utilize this template across the institution. Other questions? So I spoke about this a little bit in that we do have course leads supporting this structure. And then we also, every time we were fielding questions, we started to compile that into information for — to have a repository for people to go back to and that’s the Blackboard component. So people online, I’m going to show the Blackboard components here and you can click on that Google doc to access this document. Or it will show perhaps through the video. So we were fielding questions and creating little N time tutorials and we compiled those into these documents which is specific to our institution and our template and very specific to Blackboard. But perhaps it can be helpful if you use a different platform. But talking about the things that you need to be aware of in addition just good teaching, making sure you’re adhering to copyright and ADA, different compliant information. I’m going to share this a little later but universal design, we’ve done simple things on this and created a list to guide faculty to be accessible in their courses. And then we have a writing across the curriculum initiative. And so, this — a writing assignment should be included in every course and we have online tutors available for our students as well. And then getting into what you need to do in your course to show your presence, how do you navigate through your course. Because faculty do have full accessibility to make changes, but all technology is easy once you know what buttons to push but Blackboard is kind of clumsy. And there are multiple ways to do things and which is the best way to do things is kind of hard. So we’ve gone through and kind of compiled this for them to hopefully be a good resource that they can come back to, to utilize for their course content and the course tools. Another thing we did is the live course check-list, which kind of gives faculty — highlights the things they need to pay attention to in their template to make sure they do change it or update it or look at it and make sure it’s operating and functioning. Sometimes things break. So, it’s a good check-list to make sure your course is ready to go live. Oh, I went to the wrong one. Sorry. Okay.
We also added specific questions to our student surveys to ask about their online experience, that I think dovetail with what Quality Matters is looking for and our satisfaction rates are really high. Students are really happy with the experience that they’re receiving in these courses. And the fact that they’re consistent across their program is really I think helping this. So do you guys — here’s another poll opportunity. Do you utilize master template system? And do you want to take a minute and share what you’re doing? Yeah?>>[Off mic]>>Sorry.>>Certain programs use the master templates; some it depends on — it’s not system wide across the University. But we use canvas and there is like an option in one of them to have like, you can lock pages so it can’t be edited which sometimes addresses that issue of someone changing, you know, a QM standard. Of course some things need to be open so it can be personalized. But it depends on what we have found and what are our challenges. It depends on like the Dean of that college, what buy in do they have. So we have not a consistent, anything. It’s all kind of housed in different departments.>>Sure. I think that’s the benefit of us being so small. I think once you get big, it’s hard to do that. Everybody is in separate spaces.

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>>We’re actually moving in this direction. We have both the individual sections, but we’ve done a lot with master courses, so it’s less of a template where they have that freedom, or they have some freedom. It’s more of a lock-down structure and I think they’re starting to move towards the template. So the documents that you just showed of the check-lists and instructions I think go a long way to taking and morphing into that system and where we’ve sort of towed the line, if it’s a master course it’s one review for the one course and everybody does the same, but when you go to a template if there’s multiple sections then they each need to go through and do their own review because it sounds like what you do, they take the template and tweak it a little bit and then there’s review, eventually there may be a review.

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>>Yeah, if they make changes then it needs to go through a separate review, and they can’t hold the mark.>The check-list is password protected?

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>>It should not be. It should be fully accessible.>>Okay. Maybe it will be open later.>>So, yeah. It shouldn’t be so I’ll look into that. Yep. Please email me if you have any problems accessing these documents but I’ll look into all the links that I provided.
>>We do use a course template system for all of our online course developments campus wide. But I don’t think we’ve done a good job of communicating to faculty why there’s a template and how it meets each of those standards. So they do sometimes go in and are like, I don’t like this and gut it.>>Yeah.

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>>So, that’s really a takeaway for me here is we need to communicate that clearly to our faculty, so they understand the philosophy behind it.>>Uh-huh.>>That’s awesome, thanks.>>Yeah, you’re welcome. It’s true. You get so busy then you get people added like especially adjuncts like the day before classes start, how do you communicate to them. So I am going to talk about one thing we do is the multisection policy that they have to sign off on that they understand these are things you can change and things you can’t change. I went to a session yesterday from Quality Matters and they’re starting to build conversation around, um, the, um, teaching, the teaching aspect of the rubric and the way that they’re approaching it and designing it it’s like a rubric for people who are teaching certified courses that actually didn’t develop them and I find that’s a fantastic direction for us to go in because it ties, it talks about what they should do to facilitate the class and what, um, course design standard that links to. So they can understand when they’re making changes how that impacts the certification of the course. It’s not ready to be launched, it’s just in infancy but that’s the direction Quality Matters is going. I’m going to take this information back though and get things started now too to better communicate this information to the faculty as a whole but also adding information to when we assign these courses to people, why it’s important and what are the components of it. So, this is what we’ve already been doing is kind of sharing out what you do and perhaps there are some people online that can help add to this conversation on what you’re doing in your institution to help embed Quality Matters into your courses. So, I apologize for not bringing this forward sooner. I think in the interest of time I’m going to move forward then we can come back do this at the end. So talking about policies and procedures. What are we doing to embed this into actually our system? So I’m going to open up the document request for instructional design services. So, um, we were the first instructional designers on campus. Um, and I didn’t realize that people didn’t know what instructional designers were. So — then I came to be a part of the Quality Matters and understood that’s actually pretty common. So I took about the 2 years to market what we do, and this is the document that came out of that. Really describing what can an Instructional Designer do for you. We wear a lot of hats. But we were predominantly looked at as tech support and helping them like be worker bees in their class but not necessarily helping them to brainstorm the best way to teach things and to enhance learning in their classroom. And these conversations have really helped to push us in that direction. One of the first internal reviews that I did, I got strong feedback. I was new to the institution then were doing these internal reviews with a lead faculty and she was — she came — I mean my interpretation was she was a little offended I gave feedback to her class. Like you’re stepping outside of your role. Like that’s not what you’re supposed to be doing. So not only are my credentials that, my whole credentials are education and learning instructional design but in addition it’s QM. That’s what we’re taught to do in the Quality Matters review, and I feel like that is what gave me, um, the leg to stand on to say like I’m giving helpful recommendations and that’s what Quality Matters asks us to do. And now she’s my biggest advocate. It was just not understanding the roles and being very clear in those roles helps to build relationships and communication and just enhance courses, because if you can work together on courses, they’re better than if you’re working in a silo. We also put together a course alignment map that helps faculty when they’re building their courses or if they want to go back to give them a structure, it’s a table. And then also — I thought it was here but — um, also this, um, content expert Instructional Designer agreement which needs to stem from the Dean. We don’t have authority to ask people to do this but when you’re asking someone to create a course and you’re putting in the registration for students to sign up for it, it should be fully developed. And getting courses requested and programs launching in a very short timeline doesn’t help to support our cause at all. And so, our recommendation is two semesters ahead. And I have an example that shows all the things that you would be doing each week and should be doing each week in order to get a quality course built to allow time. Just you need so much time to think about things and for me when I’m building out, I might get halfway through and think of something and circle back around. So you need to have that iteration that you will lose if you’re building a course while you’re teaching. So we advocate heavily for that. And this is just an example of all of those components and phases that a course development goes through, and you need to take into consideration when you’re launching new courses and new programs. As I stated we — we certify the one course and all courses that then are copied from that in the sections do adhere to our multisection policy and it’s very clear what they can change and can’t change. They are welcome, if it’s appropriate and approved by their Dean to make changes. But if they do make changes that are approved, they cannot hold the certification mark in their course. They’ll need to go through the review themselves which they are encouraged to do. And then we also have the faculty evaluation policy that 33 percent of that policy is about an annual self- review and annual peer observation. And this is across the board for online and face-to-face courses and — and we build out an online hybrid teaching tool to help support the faculty with that and QM is definitely a foundation of this, um, documentation. And I look to the research on what are the best practices of what you can do in your course to help in the 4 categories of instructor presence, engagement and innovation, community building and facilitation and implementation. And so, I’ve provided a lot of examples of what you can do, obviously this isn’t a check-list. You do them all, it’s applicable to your course content and what’s in your style as a professor and as an educator. In the interest of time I’m going to skip by this. Internal professional development. So we’ve just launched a Center for excellence which is really exciting to have a goal of having centralized funds and more sustainable professional development. We have the goal to align with policies and practices for rank and promotion and teaching outcomes. In the past, we’ve put on accessibility symposiums, curriculum development, EdTech tools. We have an online employee orientation that I think can be bolstered and, um, and there’s so many things that we can add with the center now that I’m really excited about. And the UDL checklist is something that I developed for the symposium that’s there for you to look back at. There’s information on here about the consortium but we’re at 5 minutes so I would like just to say that I could not do what I do without being a part of the Ohio consortium system. They’ve enabled me to get professional development and we do our online official reviews through the barter system which is just fantastic. So, if you don’t have a system you should reach out to our system and try to get one started in your state. So, I would like to open it up for questions before we get out of here today.

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>>[Off mic]>>Yep, how to access these resources after the presentation? I have given you my Google slides which I’m running from. They are on the presentation site from QM. And it has all the links and all my slides.

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>>[Off mic]>>I would assume that it’s both.

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>>If you go to Quality Matters.org events then there’s a link that says conference presentations then you can go and access them there and I’ll put that link and people online so they can see it too. >>That’s my contact information as well and I have business cards if I would like them. Please reach out to me and email me. I’m more than happy to field questions and give you my two cents on if you’re having questions at your institution, things I’ve learned that can help you. I’m really glad I could come here and share my resources with you. So thank you so much for coming. [Applause]

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