As you embark on teaching online for the first time, allow yourself the time and the assistance of instructional design experts to learn how to teach well in this new environment. As a UGA faculty member preparing to teach a fully online course, there are resources available to help you.


Online Fellows Program

The Online Fellows Program is offered to faculty in the spring of the year with a call for participation sent to academic deans the summer prior. The program trains faculty to create immersive, interactive and approved online courses that are ready for a summer semester launch.

Each instructional designer will work with a small group of faculty to generate three important deliverables over the course of an 8-week cohort; a design document, a delivery guide and set-up guide. These documents will help your college or department achieve course sustainability, course consistency and an enjoyable experience for students. Faculty participants have access to the Office of Online Learning’s expert instructional designers, multimedia team, university-approved online development tools and ensure your course will fulfill compliance, accessibility and e-suffix standards.

Learn more about UGA's Online Fellows Program.


Instructional Design Services

Two levels of Instructional Design services are offered by the Office of Online Learning. 

Level 1: Instructional design consultation services. Request I.D. Consultation

Level 2: A dedicated instructional designer embedded in the college (shared I.D. model).

Level one, instructional design consultation, provides guidance for a faculty member who has instructional designer knowledge and plans to design and create an online course themselves. 

Level two is a shared instructional designer that is embedded in your college. Check with your academic home to find out if there is an Instructional Designer available to you or contact the Office of Online Learning.

Learn more about Instructional Design Services available through the Office of Online Learning.



Self Service Course

If you are considering teaching online, we would like to help you develop your course in the most efficient way possible. To help you learn some of the tools available for your course as well as giving you essential strategies and tips for online learning, we encourage enrolling in the Self-Service Online Teaching Course. The Office of Online Learning developed this course specifically to train new online faculty in all the tools in eLC, best practices for online learning, as well as accessibility, copyright and FERPA compliance. By going through this course, you’ll be ready to not only develop your course but teach it as well.

Course Design Process

Making the transition from the traditional to virtual classroom takes time and effort. We recommend planning and developing your course at least a year in advance of its first offering, devoting 5-10 hours a week to development.

The first thing you will want to accomplish is to get your application submitted to add an e-suffix to your course. You can find the information on that process on the eSuffix Approval page.

Our recommended timeline for a typical online course is a two semester process:

First semester

Before the end of the first week of the semester, initial communication of expectations with the instructor

2 weeks - First 4 modules of Self Service course complete including all assignments

4 weeks - 8 modules complete including all assignments

8 weeks (midterm) - course complete including all assignments

10 weeks - consultation with ID. ID will email a list of recommendations that grow from that meeting to Instructor and Department Head

15 weeks - Design Document complete

Second semester

Design Document complete by the first day of the semester

4 weeks into the semester, first module completely built into eLC

8 weeks into the semester (midterm) 50-75% of course developed

10 weeks into the semester, course completed

11 weeks - testing and peer evaluation begins

13 weeks - peer evaluation complete

15 weeks - peer recommendations integrated into the course

If you have interest in developing a course, we recommend signing up for our Self-Service Course to help you learn the tools in eLC, study best practices for online delivery, and methodically work through the content of your course. In addition, instructional designers at the Office of Online Learning are available to answer questions as you work through each module.

The instructional designers are the Office of Online Learning can be a great help to you while you develop and teach your course. They are all experienced in online learning and best teaching practices, and their suggestions are designed to make students more successful. They can also help you brainstorm how to translate your face-to-face activities to the online classroom.

Course Shell

Office of Online Learning Course Shell for eLC

The Office of Online Learning has created a Course Shell that can be used as the foundation for course development within eLC. It is recommended that you import the shell into your development space before you begin development work on your course. If you need a development space in eLC, you can request it through our Request for Services form.

The course shell is available in 8-week or 15-week format, and it is designed to help courses meet the Quality Matters standards. The course shell also includes instructions for use that are visible once you have imported the shell into your eLC development space. Your course shell can be imported into eLC using the Import/Export/Copy Components functionality.

Request an online course shell

Program Design Process

When a program partners with the Office of Online Learning, the staff coordinates with the program lead and the instructors in the program to create a complete strategy for a program’s success. Design is an essential component to the success of your program. Building a strategy for development is critical to ensuring success for your students.

First Steps

Before your instructors begin to develop courses, the OOL will help you identify the instructors who will be most successful at developing and teaching your courses using nationally researched and vetted standards. We will then coordinate a meeting with your faculty to introduce the tools available from the office and plan for how our workshops and training tools can help your instructors succeed. We will also help you plan a timeline and milestones to ensure that your program gets started on the right track.

Instructional Design Support

If a program would like guidance in achieving the highest level of quality, an instructional designer can be assigned to help coordinate and oversee the development and launch of the program. The instructional designer will be able to  coordinate your faculty’s training while also helping ensure consistency and quality throughout your program.

Cohort Model

We encourage you to consider developing your program through a cohort model. By having a group of instructors develop their courses all at once, you’ll have greater consistency and quality across your courses. You will also be able to peer review your courses for quality before launching them, a critical component to program success.

Additional Tools

When you design your program with the Office of Online Learning, we can also provide tools to help you keep your students and courses progressing smoothly. One tool that can help students is a Program Hub, a website where they can find all of the information they need as they progress through the program. In addition, the OOL can help with content management, keeping your classes protected from technology changes.

Online Course Evaluations

As a part of its mission, the Office of Online Learning supports faculty through research-based tools and techniques.  To that end, OOL has partnered with Franklin OIT to offer a customized end-of-course (EOC) evaluation tool to all fully online courses.

The experience of the fully online student and faculty is unique from that of a resident, yet equally valid. The traditional method of EOC includes metrics tied to factors that do not impact a fully online student or faculty. With the goal of continued support and improvement, data that is actionable must be collected on the fully-online cadre. Essentially, the end of course evaluation for fully online courses should have metrics tailored specifically to the experience in them. In this instance, the OOL has chosen the Quality Matters framework as basis for metrics which are both research supported and actionable.

Additionally, the validity of data regarding both student identity and enrollment status is crucial. To meet this need, OOL has partnered with Franklin OIT to leverage Franklin’s existing EOC evaluation tools. The result is a tool that is tailored, and available, to all fully online courses regardless of college.