Great Online Course Design Resources

Posted on
people in office

Are you interested in learning more about online course design and online teaching, but not sure where to start?  Check out these great books and you may find a few to use in your own teaching! If you’d like to preview these resources I’ll have them available during Learning Innovation’s open office hours on March 14, 2018.

  1. A Guide to Online Course Design: Strategies for Student Success, by Tina Stavredes and Tiffany Herder. This resource offers instructors, educational technologists, and learning designers a practical and principles-based approach to designing outcomes-based learning experiences with a focus on quality design to support learner persistence. Learn about assessment design, sequencing instruction, selection of instructional materials, and multimedia design principles to engage your learners. A chapter on continuous quality improvement includes useful course design review criteria worksheets to support learner success.
  2. A Guide to Online Course Design and Instruction, by Israel Galindo. This compact book is designed as a self-directed guide for creating an effective online course, including a “Teaching for Understanding” model and its application to course design, and helpful course design worksheets. While the book was written originally for course within the context of a theological curriculum, I  found it an excellent resource for my online course projects.
  3. Conquering the Content: A Blueprint for Online Course Design and Development (2nd edition) by Robin M. Smith. This great book blends the best of online teaching and course design in a practical framework that includes developing a content map, learning guide, a course development map, and applying sound pedagogical approaches to presenting content online.
  4. Essentials of Online Course Design: A Standards-Based Guide (2nd edition) by Marjorie Vai and Kristen Sosulski. This good read focuses on designing online instruction that engages the learner, with practical applications. Useful for instructors and designers developing both fully online and blended course models, the chapters on assessment and feedback, and building the course foundation (outcomes, syllabus, and course outline) are especially helpful. The authors also cover visual design basics, language and writing style for online instruction.
  5. Teaching Online: A Practical Guide (4th edition), by Susan Ko and Steve Rossen. A comprehensive guidebook on online teaching for faculty who are developing a new course or who want to redesign and refine their online course. This revised and expanded edition includes MOOCs, Open Education Resources (OERs), case studies, and faculty interviews. A great book and one I’ve used in my own teaching!
  6. The Online Teaching Survival Guide (2nd edition) Judith V. Boettcher and Rita-Marie Conrad. A great resource for faculty with expanded tips for online and blended teaching with advanced course design approaches founded on learning theories.  Faculty new to online teaching will find “Letting Go of the Power” particularly useful with its discussion on the role of the faculty-mentor. Packed with practical, pedagogically based teaching tips. Includes suggestions for faculty planning to redesign their online course, with advice from fellow online instructors. There is an expanded set of online resources and journals in the appendix. A robust resource for faculty and instructional designers.

Locate more resources for your teaching by visiting Learning Innovation.



Sophia Stone, Ed.D.

Author: Sophia Stone, Ed.D.

Sophia collaborates with faculty to provide pedagogical and academic technology consulting, training, and project management, for campus-based and online initiatives. She consults on innovative teaching practices across academic disciplines, and works with faculty on course planning, course design and development, and assessment strategies. Her research interests include global online education, instructional design, faculty development, distance education, and international learners.