1st Edition

Advancing Online Teaching Creating Equity-Based Digital Learning Environments

By Kevin Kelly, Todd D. Zakrajsek Copyright 2021
    264 Pages
    by Routledge

    264 Pages
    by Routledge

    The goal of teaching online is fundamentally the same as teaching face-to-face: facilitating the learning of all students to the greatest extent possible. This book differs from other books on online teaching in that, in the process of offering guidance on course design and planning, developing outcomes and appropriate engaging activities, managing the workload and assessment, the authors pay explicit attention throughout to the distinct and diverse needs of students and offer effective strategies to accommodate them in a comprehensive and inclusive way by using the principles of Universal Design for Learning. By following those principles from the outset when planning a course, all students will benefit, and most particularly those whom the research shows have the greatest achievement gaps when taking online courses -- males, first generation and low income students, those from underrepresented minority groups, the academically underprepared, students with disabilities, and those with limited online access or lacking readiness for online learning. Beyond good planning and design, Kelly and Zakrajsek offer ideas for creating inclusive course environments and activities, such as using culturally appropriate content and making it accessible in multiple formats. They also share methods to foster faculty-learner interaction and increase personal connections with students, and among students, through group activities or learning communities, which are so critical to motivation and success. Faculty new to online teaching as well as more experienced readers will find a wealth of practical guidance on developing and honing both fully online and blended courses and, as importantly, a wealth of proven ideas to help the new generation of students with diverse needs to succeed.

    Foreword—Michelle Pacansky-Brock Series Preface—Todd Zakrajsek Introduction Part One. Designing a Distance Learning Experience 1.1 Equity, Connections, and Inclusion 1.2 (Re)Writing Learning Outcomes for Your Online Course 1.3 Developing Your Online Course Structure 1.4 Finding, Creating, and Sharing Course Content 1.5 Aligning Activities and Assessment Strategies With Course Outcomes 1.6 Making Your Online Course Accessible Part Two. Guiding Learners from a Distance 2.1 Supporting Online Learners Appendix 2.1. Sample Syllabus Policies 2.2 Creating and Maintaining Your "Instructor Presence" 2.3 Facilitating Engaging and Meaningful Online Course Activities 2.4 Managing Your Workload When Teaching Online Part Three:Making Adjustments to Your Online Course 3.1 Assessing Teaching Online 3.2 Assessing Learning Online Appendix A. Resources for Putting Difficult Topics Online Appendix B. Technologies for Online Teaching and Learning Appendix C. URL List References Authors Index


    Kevin Kelly teaches online courses as a Lecturer in the Department of Equity, Leadership Studies, and Instructional Technologies at San Francisco State University, where he has also served as Online Teaching and Learning Manager. He works with colleges and universities as a consultant to address distance education, educational technology, and organizational challenges.

    Todd D. Zakrajsek, PhD, is an associate professor in the Department of Family Medicine at UNC - Chapel Hill and President of the International Teaching Learning Cooperative (ITLC).Todd was a tenured associate professor of psychology and built faculty development efforts at three universities before joining UNC. At UNC he is an Associate Director of the Faculty Development Fellowship within the School of Medicine. Through his work with the ITLC, Todd directs five Lilly Conferences on Evidence-Based Teaching and Learning and also consults with a wide variety of campuses on topics related to teaching/learning, leadership, and scholarly activity.Todd has served on many educationally related boards and work groups, including The Journal of Excellence in College Teaching, International Journal for the Scholarship of Teaching and Learning, College Teaching, and Education in the Health Professions.He has consulted with organizations such as The American Council on Education (ACE), Lenovo Computer, Microsoft, and the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation; and delivered keynote addresses and campus workshops at over 300 conferences and university campuses in 49 states and 12 countries.Todd publishes on topics pertaining to student learning, effective teaching, leadership, scholarly activity, and assessment. Todd’s recently co-authored books include Teaching for Learning (2nd Ed)(2021); Advancing Online Teaching (2021); The New Science of Learning (2nd Ed) (2019); and Dynamic Lecturing (2017). Check out Todd’s two TEDx talks here. You can follow and connect with him on Twitter @toddzakrajsek and LinkedIn.

    From the Foreword:

    “Kevin and Todd have developed a tremendous resource in the pages of this book. I wish I had this book when I started teaching online. Keep it near your workspace. Mark it up. Chew on the reflection and discussion questions. Revisit it frequently. It will be invaluable to you as you move forward with your efforts to develop equity-based digital learning environments. Just remember, improving your online course is a continuous, iterative process. It takes hard work and dedication to your students. Keep looking back at where you’ve been to recognize evidence of your efforts and look to your students’ feedback and learning to relish in the impact. Enjoy the journey.”

    Michelle Pacansky-Brock, Online Educator, Faculty Developer, and Thought Leader

    "Advancing Online Teaching is a timely, essential text that brilliantly empowers online instructors to create effective, equitable, and engaging courses. Every inch of this book is steeped in Universal Design for Learning (UDL), equity, and humanizing research. Replete with practical tips, helpful examples, informative diagrams, and a treasure-trove of valuable resources, Kelly and Zakrajsek have forged a model that embodies the design, facilitation, and constant refinement strategies that are exemplars of online teaching excellence!"

    Lillian Nave, Appalachian State University & Host of the Think UDL podcast

    “Never has the conversation on how to enact equity-based online teaching and learning been more critical than during the current COVID-19 pandemic. The crisis forced a dramatic shift to online teaching for faculty and other higher education instructors, who often possessed only minimal training and limited (or no) prior experience teaching online. The particularly timely book Advancing Online Teaching: Creating Equity-based Digital Learning Environments, by Kevin Kelly and Todd Zakrajsek, provides a foundation on which to develop and deliver equity-focused online courses during and long after the COVID-19 disruptions to higher education.

    As part of the Excellent Teacher Series, the aim of this book is to provide instructional resources for higher education faculty. Specifically, Advancing Online Teaching accomplishes this aim by centering the discussion of online learning around topics of inclusivity, equitability, and compassion, with recommendations grounded within prior research and frameworks on universal design, design for equity, and human connections.

    Advancing Online Teaching provides a helpful framework for designing and teaching online courses equitably. One of the notable strengths of the book is the ability to connect and speak to online instruction during COVID-19 due to its publication timeline. Although the focus of the book is the use of online instructional tools, much of the content covered also describes best practices that transcend the virtual education space and are equally applicable to a more traditional, face-to-face context. For this reason, newer higher education faculty or instructors are likely to find the insights in this book most helpful, although more experienced educators new to online teaching and/or those looking to refine existing online courses may also benefit.

    [This book] fully accomplishes the authors’ goal of providing a solid framework for designing and teaching a quality, equity-based online course. In conclusion, Advancing Online Teaching is a timely, relevant book that many—most notably new online higher education faculty—will find a welcome addition to their reading lists and office libraries.”

    Teachers College Record

    "The topics of accessibility and equity are relevant to anyone teaching, be it online or face-to-face. The topics of course structure, syllabus creation, and assessing course content can also be utilized by instructional designers. New and experienced faculty members alike will benefit from discussions on equity and the accessibility of course materials."

    Alisa Richardson, Journal of Faculty Development