GSE Course Continuity Plan
Last updated April 9, 2020
As of March 11, 2020, the university is suspending face-to-face instruction on all of Fordham’s New York area campuses. The GSE Online Team and University IT are here to support you by providing a continuity strategy and answering your technology questions for your online course delivery.
Contact Information for Assistance
Contact the staff in the Faculty Technology Center for assistance to create a hybrid or online version of your course: firstname.lastname@example.org.
There is 24/7 Blackboard support available on bbhelp.fordham.edu for chat or call 877-310-4667 (for both students and faculty).
For any technical assistance including internet connectivity or a computer at home, contact Fordham IT at 718-817-3999 or click on the Tech Help tab at My.Fordham.
If you’d like a one-on-one consultation to help translate your face-to-face course into an online format, please contact Dr. Rachel Um, GSE Director of Online Learning, at email@example.com or GSE Online Team at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Steps for Your Course Continuity
To quickly move your class online, take the following steps:
- Locate your course in Blackboard
- Make your course available to students
- Post your syllabus
- Confirm your course name and roster
- Plan Live, Synchronous Class at the same time you normally hold class
- Blackboard Collaboration
- Zoom - If you have an account, set up a meeting for your class
- Communicate the location of your virtual class in Blackboard by creating an announcement and checking the box “send email”
- Please share this content with students who are new to online classes: GSE Student Course Expectations and Online Etiquette. This document includes: 1) general course requirements and expectations; 2) expectations for live, synchronous class sessions using Zoom, Blackboard Collaborate, Webex, Google Hangout Meet, etc.; 3) other technological concerns; 4) Fordham University policies.
Free Technology to Support Course Conversion
- Google Hangout Meet just extended their limit of meeting participants from 25 to 250 people for video conferencing.
- SMART Learning Suite Online is available to all schools affected by the coronavirus outbreak.
With additional time to plan, you can incorporate different learning strategies into your online course:
- Plan assignment submissions
- Discussion board
- Generating and Facilitating Engaging and Effective Online Discussions via TEP at University of Oregon
- Discussion Board Rubrics via iRubric for inspiration in creating your rubic
- Additional resources
- A/V recommendations
Note: assignments that take place offline or asynchronously will count towards the credit hour policy. Communicate regularly with your students using a weekly progress email, reminders, etc. Respond to your students within 24 hours.
Online Workshops and Video Resources
Fordham IT has scheduled a series of highly recommended online webinars to help you prepare your courses for online delivery. Introductory online webinars offer:
- Strategies for Course Continuity
- Blackboard Intro.
- Synchronous Tools - Blackboard Collaborate and more
- Asynchronous Tools - Screencasting and more
YouTube Tutorials for Delivering Instruction
- Online Learning Environments: An Introduction - This video reviews the differences between synchronous and asynchronous approaches.
- Communicating with Your Students During an Interruption - This video reviews the various ways faculty might communicate with their students using simple tools.
- Managing Online Discussions - This video provides some guidance on how to conduct online asynchronous discussions and shares some evidence based practices.
- For Synchronous Instruction -- Zoom. The interface is relatively user-friendly, and it has features (like breakout groups) that could be used to promote small group discussions. We will be using Zoom for all dissertation defenses and meetings.
Zoom Video Conferencing Tool
Zoom is now available to all students, faculty, and staff. It supports remote office work and course continuity. By now, you should have your own zoom account with your Fordham email. If you have any problems with your account, please contact IThelp@fordham.edu.
Fordham Zoom Quick Overview
Check this information regarding your Zoom account and quick How-To’s such as “Schedule a meeting and invite,” “Using breakout rooms,” etc.
Zoom Q&A Workshops
Fordham IT scheduled several workshops on the Zoom video conferencing tool. Use the link to check and register for workshops for using Zoom as well as for other Academic Technology support.
For those who are experienced with Zoom, this 30-minute video may be helpful. It includes information about breakout groups. For basic Zoom support information, click here.
Screencasting Software -- for Asynchronous Sessions
Remember that asynchronous content can be just as purposeful and meaningful as live, synchronous class sessions. Some key tips for creating asynchronous content:
Objectives. Include an objective at the beginning of each activity. For example, “By the end of this activity/lesson, you should…”
Clarity. Use very clear and succinct language when writing any kind of directions. It is also helpful to specify a length range for written responses, i.e., 250-500 words, so students know what the expectations are.
Motivation. Address the students as “you” so that they feel engaged when reading about what they have to do.
Choices. There are many ways that students can share their understanding of content. You can tap into their creativity by giving students a choice of how to respond to a posting; for example, they can write a regular text response, upload a voice recording, or film themselves. Offering students choices can energize them by providing different ways to express themselves.
Timing. Although students learn at different paces and take varying lengths of time to read or complete other assignments, providing an approximate length of time that you think it will take them to complete an assignment is helpful for students to schedule their day. Use your best judgement when providing these time guidelines.
Personalization. It’s okay to insert your personality and voice into asynchronous work. If you want to add a dose of humor, go for it!
5 Tips for Distance Learning from Library Resources
This link takes you to the Fordham Library’s blog. Here, there are tips for distance learners. Though the blog post was originally written for MSW students, the content is all applicable to our GSE students.
Feel free to distribute among your students and encourage them to reach out to our Distance Learning Liaison Kirsten Lee (email@example.com) with any questions about library resources and services. The content includes: 1) Familiarize yourself with ARES; 2) Learn how to find the resources you need at Fordham (and beyond); 3) Ask for help; 4) Build relationships; 5) Make the most of Fordham University services.
Please check the various resources our University IT put together for your course continuity: Fordham IT Remote Teaching Resources: Course Continuity Resources.
Keep up-to-date with GSE communications on COVID-19 virus and university communications.