Why do I need to consult with a doctoral student about implementing my course into Canvas? I have already taught online courses through Blackboard, so I already know what I’m doing. I don’t need to utilize this program. Online teaching is easy. I’ll just transfer my Blackboard content into Canvas. I don’t need to waste my time consulting with my Academic Technology Scholar.
These, or similar, thoughts may be running through many of your heads. Before completing the Academic Technology Scholars training program, I thought somewhat similarly. I thought, how hard can online teaching be? Try to think back to a time you took an online course, or even your first course as a college student. You may remember feeling lost and uncertain. You struggled to process all the information you were given during “syllabus week.” When were assignments due? How were you supposed to come up with a topic for your term paper? Where could you access the reading materials? There was just so much information and for a first-time college student, or a first-time online student, you especially struggled to keep it all straight.
It is important that you remember that experience as you prepare your course in Canvas. How can you help your students to avoid those feelings of anxiety as they try to navigate an online or hybrid course? How can you make your students feel supported even if you never see them face-to-face? How can you provide your students with the tools necessary to accomplish all the course objectives?
As the Academic Technology Scholar, I will assist you with accomplishing all of this. The most important thing you need, though, is the motivation to do so. It is easy to get “stuck in our ways” and avoid changing our class structure because “why change it if it’s not broken?” I can assure you that, although your course may not be broken by any means, it can be vastly improved using an online platform that gives you tools you probably have never had the access to previously. I am excited to work with you this summer to take your course to the next level so that your students do not have to deal with quite as much anxiety (probably still a little anxiety) as most first-time online students.