Sometimes, educators need tips on the best ways to approach online instruction

online-instructionFor more than 35 years, Barry Eckhouse has taught at Saint Mary’s College in Moraga, Calif., but this term he’s taking on a new kind of student–fellow professors.

As the college expands the number of classes it offers online, Eckhouse is busy training instructors on how to teach web-centered classes effectively. He calls the training program a Digital Driver’s License, and he believes it’s the first of its kind in the nation.

Eckhouse, who helped launch the college’s hybrid online MBA program in 2006, said the need for a training program at this point is critical, and that every professor needs to be on board with it.

“Back in 2006, we could take our faculty who were comfortable with online, familiar with technology and put them into that environment, and other professors could continue to teach face to face and everybody was happy,” Eckhouse said. “That’s not the case anymore, and it’s not the case nationally.”

(Next page: How the course teaches educators about online instruction)

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