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Section 2: Professional Development

A description of professional development and ongoing support for instructors redesigning courses to maximize students’ self-efficacy in their ability to learn across campus and virtual domains

Planning at the instructor and course level aims to uphold the second key tenet of the TCU Connected Campus Plan: TCU’s high-quality, personalized curricular experiences are largely facilitated by face-to-face instructor to student interaction as well as active learning pedagogy that engages students within the classroom. The TCU Koehler Center for Instruction, Innovation & Engagement (“Koehler Center”) has developed training to help maintain the TCU personalized learning experiences within virtual domains.

The Koehler Center’s online training course, called the “Hybrid Course”, is a 12-hour course that teaches one how to use tools (such as Zoom) for the delivery of synchronous online instruction – enabling online courses to maintain face-to-face (albeit virtual) instructor to student interaction. The course also teaches the use of tools for delivery of asynchronous course components, e.g., using the TCU Online platform for course management, posting prerecorded video lectures, and enabling online threaded discussions. The Hybrid Course also teaches the use of tools that facilitate active learning in the online classroom, e.g., establishing virtual breakout rooms for student team work during class.

Once instructors complete the Hybrid Course, or are verified by the Koehler Center to have mastered its learning objectives, they will possess the skills needed to offer online courses that include synchronous and asynchronous components. Instructors will be expected to redesign their courses with support from their colleges using course design models drafted by their colleges – as described in the next sections.

 

Implementation

Beginning with courses offered during May 2020, all credit-bearing courses and experiences offered by TCU will leverage TCU Online (D2L), the university’s learning management system. This includes independent study and dissertation courses. Furthermore, all TCU instructors will demonstrate proficiency with delivering courses online using both synchronous and asynchronous instructional elements.

All TCU instructors of record for the Summer and Fall 2020 semesters must be hybrid certified by the Koehler Center. This training develops skills for building and managing courses within the TCU Online learning management system, as well as training on how to design and deliver a hybrid course using both synchronous and asynchronous instructional elements. In addition, skills will be developed to facilitate an inclusive classroom environment, both face-to-face and virtually.

To assist with training over 1,000 instructors by August 1, a “Train the Trainer” model has been developed. Forty employees, certified as online experts, will be selected by the deans and invited to serve as trainers during summer 2020. Koehler Center staff will offer the Hybrid Course professional development starting in May, while also training the forty trainers. Koehler Center staff and the faculty trainers will then work with all TCU instructors of record according to the Summer School Training Schedule and Fall Semester Training Schedule on the Koehler Center website.

Many instructors already possess many of the skills delivered by this training.  The Koehler Center staff will consult with instructors to determine which portions of the training are required for each individual. We ask instructors to please consult with the Koehler Center for skills verification well ahead of their scheduled course start date.

 

Training Timeline

May 7Koehler Center confirms that instructors scheduled to teach courses that start in May have completed the Hybrid Course. List of exceptions submitted to the provost.
May 28Koehler Center confirms that instructors scheduled to teach courses that start in June have completed the Hybrid Course. List of exceptions submitted to the provost.
Early MayDeans invite people to serve as College eTrainers and become members of the Deans College Connect Team. List of eTrainers and their preferred training month (May training to delivery course in June OR June training to delivery course in July) submitted to provost.
Mid MayDeans identify half of their faculty members to complete the Hybrid Course in June and half of their faculty members to complete the Hybrid Course in July.
June 3Deans submit first draft of College Connect Plan to the provost. Draft includes: identification of College eTrainers, description of responsibilities during fall.
July 1 to July 31College eTrainers participate in Koehler Center “Train the Trainer” development and help train cohorts of instructors during summer 2020. Partial schedule outlined on the Koehler Center Website. Full schedule forthcoming.
June 18Koehler Center confirms that instructors scheduled to teach courses that start in July have completed the Hybrid Course. List of exceptions submitted to the provost.
June 15Koehler Center confirms that instructors scheduled to teach courses in the fall semester are on track to complete the Hybrid Course by August 1. List of exceptions submitted to the provost.
Aug. 1Koehler Center confirms that instructors scheduled to teach courses in the fall semester have completed the Hybrid Course. List of exceptions submitted to the provost.