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Reflecting on DLL’s Efforts during COVID-19

Fall Support Effort

In April 2020, Digital and Lifelong Learning (DLL) was asked by the Provost to develop a plan to help create online courses for the Fall 2020 semester in response to COVID-19. The DLL planning group submitted a detailed proposal with a phased approach to impact the largest number of courses possible.

Over the summer, DLL worked with instructors in the College of Arts and Sciences and various Professional Schools who were teaching Fall 2020 courses to develop their course content in a multitude of ways. The different options for support for campus instructors were as follows:

  • Option 1: As part of Carolina Away, DLL created a full-support model to pair each instructor with a DLL instructional designer and videographer to help design their courses throughout the summer. The support team worked directly with the Instructor, recommended best practices, created video content, and built the course in Sakai.
  • Option 2: Fall 2020 Instructors were grouped into cohorts and completed a 2-week “Best Practices in Online Course Design” training led by a DLL instructional designer. After the training, instructors could utilize additional DLL videography and instructional design services on an as-needed basis to complete their courses.

Additionally, a video capture kit was mailed to Fall 2020 instructors who wished to record professional-looking videos from home as part of their course content. Additional consultations from our DLL videographers were available to help edit course videos.

In total, the DLL was able to support the build of 131 online courses for the Fall 2020 semester utilizing these approaches.

Ongoing Work & Next Steps

Since the Fall Support Effort, DLL has expanded internal processes to serve larger proportions of online courses and programs at UNC-Chapel Hill. We have repurposed the Best Practices in Online Course Design training to assist more UNC-Chapel Hill instructors as they teach courses online. We’ve also tailored this training for specific needs of individual academic schools and units across campus.

DLL has supported 170 instructors through the Best Practice in Online Course Design training.

Working in conjunction with ITS Teaching and Learning and the Center for Faculty Excellence, DLL developed Keep Teaching, an active repository for UNC-Chapel Hill instructors to learn strategies for online teaching, schedule teaching consultations with a DLL instructional designer, attend trainings to grow an online teaching knowledge base, and to ultimately feel prepared to teach courses online.

DLL supported 230 instructors through the Keep Teaching website in 2020.

We continue to look for ways to best support online learning at UNC-Chapel Hill in both the short- and long-term and look forward to our continued work with units across campus in broader support of Carolina Together.

Have a question or idea for us to support online learning across campus? Let’s talk.

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