UWI Teaching & Learning Remotely

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Communicate with your students

It is important that you inform your students immediately about your plans to teach remotely.  Let them know that there are likely to be adjustments to syllabus and that the details will follow. This will help relieve some of their anxiety and help them prepare for a different modality.  Be honest with them about this being uncharted territory for you, if indeed it is.   

Make sure students know when and where new course material will be posted. Talk to them about why you’re prioritizing and assigning certain things, just as you would in face-to-face teaching. Remember that substantial changes to the syllabus require clear communication with students.  See the section entitled Communication Strategies.

Maintain your normal class schedule

As far as possible, it is advisable to maintain your normal class schedule when you move your class online to avoid clashes with other classes. This is especially important if you are using synchronous technologies for teaching (e.g. Blackboard Collaborate or Zoom). Also be aware that student’s time zones may have changed so be careful to specify time zones for synchronous meetings.

It is important that you set up virtual office hours and communicate your availability to students. You can use Zoom, Blackboard Collaborate, Skype or any other available tool to accomplish this.

 Take care of yourself and your students

Do what you need to do to stay physically and mentally healthy so that you will be able to do the best for your students during very challenging and difficult times. Remember to be kind to yourself and your students, given that many will be stressed, even if they don’t express these feelings openly.