Online Teaching Support
This past March Pratt faculty quickly pivoted to teaching in an emergency remote format. They were flexible and responsive to help our students complete the semester successfully. Now we are looking beyond remote teaching to promoting best practices of teaching in online and hybrid formats. Respectful of different approaches and learning styles of teachers themselves, we engaged in several modes of enrichment for our faculty community–casual Coffee Chats; cohort-based Resilient Teaching Online workshop series throughout the summer and beyond; practical guidelines, resources and individual consultations to help faculty learn and utilize the new Canvas LMS.
Guiding Principles for Online Teaching
As part of a continuous effort to ensure quality in online course design, the CTL has identified (based on research-based recommendations) best practices and guiding principles for quality online teaching. Pratt faculty are encouraged to consult these suggestions as they plan their online and hybrid courses.
Guiding Principles for Quality Online Teaching
Since post-Covid19, Pratt’s Center for Teaching and Learning (CTL) held weekly Coffee Chats on Zoom. Faculty from all departments and ranks joined us at these recurring, supportive, online spaces where we had no agenda and no predetermined goals. These small gatherings are examples of how we practice flexibility within a community, and conversations flowed from sharing personal worries and everyday anxieties, to questions about teaching and classroom or curriculum-related concerns. Issues of inequity and accessibility were brought into focus by the pandemic and the rapid move to the online environment, as well as the effects of trauma as they inform pedagogies in higher education now and moving forward. An emergent focus of these Coffee Chats has been to recognize how isolating the situation is for all of us; how important it is for faculty to prioritize belonging to a continuous community of trusted colleagues or friends; and how individual experiences shape our evolving pedagogies.
Fall Semester Coffee Chats schedule coming soon.
Resilient Teaching Online
The Center for Teaching and Learning developed and has offered successive rounds of Resilient Teaching Online (RTO), a workshop series designed to instruct and support faculty in the development of inclusive, engaged, high quality classes online and in hybrid form. A significant number of our faculty has already taken this workshop, and it will continue to be offered this fall. Faculty participants in the RTO series come away with understanding best practices for online course design and facilitation, creating a plan for building an online classroom community, keeping classes accessible for all, providing meaningful feedback and modeling and responding to complicated scenarios due to Covid19 with resilience. To model an interactive mix of synchronous and asynchronous elements, scheduled Zoom conversations around RTO topics also support our faculty so they can discuss the materials with colleagues across the disciplines.
While at times difficult, we have found these conversations invigorating and fruitful. The collaborative nature of our Pratt community has taken these conversations as action-items, many dispatching to their own departments or creating cross-departmental collaboration of their own. See what our amazing colleagues in the IEP and Fine Arts departments have been working on.
RTO Information and Self-Enroll Link
Grow with Canvas
The Center for Teaching and Learning also offers training and support for faculty in learning the tools to create engaging online courses. The self-paced Grow with Canvas course is designed to help Pratt faculty learn how to use Canvas LMS effectively in online or hybrid learning environments. It’s a great place to start learning Canvas or to fine-tune existing Canvas skills. Participants in the course can watch videos, use Canvas documentation, complete activities, and participate in discussions to learn and apply Canvas features. To support faculty along the way, the CTL is hosting Daily Office Hours through Zoom, where faculty can drop in with any pedagogical questions related to using the Canvas for teaching.