Committee on Online Learning (COOL)
Frequently Asked Questions
I am making changes to the delivery of the online/hybrid course; do I need to submit a new proposal?
The answer is, it depends. You do not need to submit a proposal
for an online or hybrid course you have already been teaching at Chabot unless
you intend to significantly change the delivery mode, such as turning a
hybrid into a fully-online course or vice-versa.
For example, a hybrid course you are teaching is offered at 51% online instead
of 75% online would not require another proposal. However, if you plan to offer
a hybrid course as fully online, the submission of a new proposal would be
required. For example, a course offered fully online instead of a hybrid, for
which there are no in-person meetings, would require a significant change to the
set of contact hour descriptions, etc.
For example, a hybrid course you are teaching is offered at 51% online instead of 75% online would not require another proposal. However, if you plan to offer a hybrid course as fully online, the submission of a new proposal would be required. For example, a course offered fully online instead of a hybrid, for which there are no in-person meetings, would require a significant change to the set of contact hour descriptions, etc.
With over 50% of all courses at Chabot college incorporating Blackboard (and other technology) into their courses, we are often asked at what point does the course become hybrid or online and therefore require approval?
Title 5 Section 55206 Regulations require separate course
approval for distance education delivery courses. If any portion of the
instruction in a proposed or existing course or course section is designed to be
provided through distance education in lieu of face-to-face interaction between
instructor and student, the course shall be separately reviewed and approved
according to the district’s adopted course approval procedures.
The key factor necessitating approval is when face-to-face time is replaced with
The key factor necessitating approval is when face-to-face time is replaced with online delivery.
As required in the current faculty contract (page 10-4), the process calls for all faculty planning to:
to present an Online Learning course delivery plan to the COOL Committee.
(There may be some exceptions in the process for: Program-based Course Proposals).
There are three primary reasons for this.
Program-based Course Proposals (this section is a DRAFT)
If a discipline area agrees to offer prebuilt, uniform courses in either online or hybrid modalities, the COOL will honor the decision to utilize consistent, shared, instructional platforms with a modified approval process. The ability to utilize these types of course designs, allows for increased online / hybrid offerings, increased faculty utilization of online learning, and increased educational opportunities for students.
The COOL recommends the following considerations to approve these proposals:
1. An initial course proposal must be submitted by a "lead" instructor for each course to be offered. If the proposal represents multiple courses and/or instructors, the course delivery methods, the contact hours, and all other aspects of the course delivery plan written in the proposal must reflect the plan for all of the courses/instructors indicated. Courses with varying units, contact hours, delivery methods, etc. require the submission of a separate proposal.
2. Each faculty, if not previously approved for online learning, should enter into a “mentoring” relationship with the either the course developer or experienced online faculty who have facilitated that specific course. The COOL is currently seeking funding for mentoring, but faculty are also encouraged to inquire within their division.
3. All faculty planning to facilitate an existing “approved” course must complete a course demonstration, (in person if deemed necessary by the review team), to demonstrate their familiarity with the course and to provide insight to their knowledge / experience with online learning. This will allow COOL members to offer insight into online instruction and ensure that the faculty member is fully aware of the unique characteristics of online learners.
The answer depends on deadlines. Ideally, prior to attempting to teach online, you complete introductory Blackboard training, and gradually incorporate various uses of Blackboard into your on-campus courses for a few semesters.
What do the Statewide Regulations specify as far as the amount and types of faculty-student contact?
Title 5 Regulations specify that "All approved courses offered as distance education shall include regular effective contact between instructor and students, through group or individual meetings, orientation and review sessions, supplemental seminar or study sessions, field trips, library workshops, telephone contact, correspondence, voicemail, email, or other activities." (Section 55376) This language was adopted by the Board of Governors in July 1998, changing the focus from "in-person contact" to "regular effective contact" for credit transferable courses.
"Curriculum committees must make a judgment as to the quality of the course based on a review of the appropriateness of the methods of presentation, assignments, evaluation of student performance, and instructional materials. Are these components adequate to achieve the stated objectives of the course?"
Opportunity vs. Obstacle Course: The curriculum review is intended to assist faculty interested in creating a course of the highest possible quality. There is not a single, "most effective" model for distance education that everyone must follow, but rather an entire continuum of delivery modes. How much the class will rely on technology, videos, on-campus meetings, or off-campus contact depends totally on the curriculum, the instructor, and the students. The questions to be discussed should be made available to all interested faculty and staff, and effective proposals should be shared as exemplars.
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