The Center for Online and Distance Learning offered its first Blackboard Course Development: Teaching Online Boot Camp this October. The two-week workshop was designed as a crash course in teaching online at UTC and was presented in a hybrid format (workshop materials and interactions took place online and special topics were addressed in two face-to-face meetings).

Instructors from departments all over campus quickly filled up all available spots in the workshop; all hoping to explore the possibility of taking their course online. Five instructors completed the workshop. which focused on methods and best practices for teaching online. Participating instructors were students in this Blackboard workshop, giving them first-hand experience with being an online student and the use of Blackboard’s various learning and engagement tools.




Participant Survival Guide:

  • Set aside 2 hours every day (Monday-Friday) to participate in the workshop
  • If you are not familiar with Blackboards tools – accessing content, submitting assignments, participating discussions, and blogging – you may need more time to work through the tutorials in the course
  • Read all discussion board posts and respond to your colleagues 2-4 times throughout the week
  • Visit the faculty developers in the Walker Center for Teaching and Learning (401 Hunter Hall). Training and troubleshooting available Monday – Friday 8 a.m. – 5 p.m.

Lessons Learned (workshop adjustments):

  • Possibly spread the workshop over a month?
  • Possibly schedule department specific sessions? Would allow for specific curriculum discussions.
  • Schedule open lab sessions in addition to face-to-face meetings to support Blackboard training needs and troubleshooting

We would love your feedback! Are two-weeks too short and/or too intense? Would a month with more flexibility in participation be better or is a month too long? What do you think of the hybrid format? What topics are of interest to you?

Interested in participating in the next Boot Camp? Sign-up for January’s session here.


Erin NoseworthyErin Profile





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