Emergencies related to a severe weather crisis or a health crisis can result in missed class time for students, and instructors. Learning Innovation recommends the following to keep a class going during emergencies.
- Have a communication strategy. Tell your students where to locate course information.
- Plan how you will stay in touch with your TAs and other instructional staff.
- Post your syllabus online and update it with course changes as needed.
- Have a clearly-stated course policy regarding make-ups and absences.
- Consider how you could adapt assignments in case of an extended emergency.
When you or your students can’t attend, here are suggestions to keep the class going:
- Post documents and assignments online. An option is to use Sakai or WordPress.
- Narrate a slide show from home using Quicktime (Mac) or narrating with powerpoint.
- Record the class lecture for students to view later. Duke offers lecture capture for classes via Duke Capture in several teaching spaces and via mobile recording options.
- Substitute a Sakai discussion forum or Duke WordPress blogs for class sessions.
- Use tools like WebEx, Skype or Google Hangouts to hold online real-time meetings.
- Host phone-based audio conferences for small classes.
- For lab sections, create virtual labs online or arrange for alternative activities in place of the lab.
Distribute, collect and grade assignments
- Post assignment instructions and grades on the course website.
- Use the Sakai Assignments tool to collect assignments electronically.
- Use online tools to comment, grade and return assignments.
- Use tools like VoiceThread to comment orally on student work. Learn more about VoiceThread here.
- Offer online quizzes, questionnaires or tests where appropriate. (See Sakai Tests & Quizzes)
Manage student meetings and group work
- Offer students online tools for group work such as Sakai, DukeWiki, and Google Docs.
- Use instant messenger or video chat (Skype, Google Hangouts, etc.) to communicate one-on-one.
- Hold online meetings, with shared visuals and audio, via Duke WebEx.
- Use the Sakai announcements tool to tell students when you’ll be available online, and how to contact you.
Learn more about Learning Innovation’s faculty opportunities here. When there is time to plan ahead, contact us to set up a time to discuss these options for your course. OIT and Trinity Technology Services also offer assistance to instructors seeking ways to accommodate for course disruptions due to class cancellations.