Online Resources and In-Class Interaction

Thursday, September 20, 1-2pm

Faculty, instructional technologists, librarians, and others from the NITLE Network interested in effective design for blended learning methods and open educational resources at liberal arts colleges are invited to attend this seminar. Attendance by institutional teams is encouraged; individuals are also welcome to participate. (Times EDT)

Hosted online via NITLE’s videoconferencing platform


As the terms “flipping the classroom” and “blended learning” continue to garner attention, liberal arts institutions are evaluating the role that these frameworks can play on residential campuses. While the buzzwords are novel, the goal of enhancing student engagement during in-class meetings has long been a staple of our work. Effective classroom teachers are designers who strive to create environments—whether physical or digital—that set the stage for rigorous, robust, analytical, and dynamic in-class interactions leading to deeper learning. Simply putting students in groups after they’ve watched a lecture online to solve poorly designed problems is a recipe for failure and frustration.

In this session, our presenters will share information about two projects to create open educational resources for blended learning (funded by the Associated Colleges of the South) and discuss the instructional design principles that guided their development. Analyzing and Creating Maps involved a collaboration between Furman and Trinity Universities to develop self-contained modules usable in any course in which mapping plays an important role. A similar collaboration between the University of Richmond and Furman University resulted in the development of Beyond the (Online) Handbook: Writing Resources Designed for the Digital Environment, an online resource designed to support writing-intensive courses. Both projects produced resources designed to support in-class activities, rather than replace classroom interactions. Beginning with feedback on these projects, participants will discuss useful design paradigms for maximizing the effectiveness of in- and out-of-class assignments at liberal arts colleges.