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Online Course Design Institute

Posted by on Monday, April 12, 2021 in Events.

This one-week hands-on Online Course Development Institute (OCDI) will take place from May 17th through 21st. Participants will be guided through a systematic step-wise approach to designing an online course and facilitating synchronous and asynchronous interactions.  Participants will be equipped to make design decisions that support student engagement, meaningful learning and assessments, and equity and inclusivity. This institute will benefit instructors seeking to design or redesign an online course, particularly those teaching in the Summer. 

During the institute, participants will:

  • Learn about the basic principles and considerations for converting a face to face course to an online course
  • Appreciate the value and importance of creating equitable and inclusive learning experiences that account for student motivation
  • Become aware of  the power instructors have in proactively providing the structure (design) and leadership (facilitation/direction) to foster inclusive and meaningful learning in an online environment
  • Develop a course plan for their upcoming online course that integrates learning objectives with assessments and both synchronous and asynchronous learning activities
  • Learn about the affordances of online teaching tools, identify tools that align with their goals, and develop practical skills using those tools
  • Identify possible problems that may occur based on their course design and plan solutions

Format and Time Commitment

The Online Course Design Institute  will consist of a mix of asynchronous and synchronous activities, with time built in for individual course planning and digital tool practice. Participants will work through a series of Brightspace modules leading through a course design process. They will meet daily (typically for 60-90 minutes) via Zoom in small cohorts for peer feedback on course plans. Participants should plan to spend  2- 3 hours daily to complete structured activities and individual work on their courses. 

Eligibility and Application Process

The Online Course Design Institute is open to all Vanderbilt faculty members with teaching responsibilities, as well as graduate students and postdocs who will be serving as instructors of record at Vanderbilt. 

All instructors of record are invited to apply by Friday, April 23rd.  If you are interested in participating in the Online Course Design Institute, please apply here.  

The total number of participants will be limited to 40, and applicants will be notified of their acceptance byWednesday, April 28.  Preferences will be given to instructors of record intending to (re)design courses to be taught in the summer and the upcoming academic year.

If you have further questions, please contact the CFT’s Assistant Director,  Julaine Fowlin at





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