CTEVirginia Commonwealth UniversityCenter for Teaching ExcellenceCTE
CTE HomeAbout the CTEProgramsWorkshopsResourcesWhat's New
Bookmark This Site CTE Site Map Printer Friendly Text Size:SmallNormalLargeExtra Large


You have made the decision to move your class online and now wonder how to go about doing that.  That is the purpose of this CTE resource guide – to assist you in rethinking your teaching so that your online experience is a success.

Teaching and learning online is different from traditional means of education.  You and your students are interacting with each other and your content without physically being together.  This suggests new practices are required.

You already have experience teaching.  In developing your traditional classes, you probably used an approach like this:

In classes you have taught in the past, you had clear learning outcomes in mind.  You assembled content that supported those outcomes and crafted interactions in class which helped students meet those outcomes.  You used formative and summative assessment to evaluate whether students in fact met the outcomes, and used that evaluation to adjust your content and interactions.

Now you will be doing the same, but in a new online environment.  One could argue that teaching online is no different, but we disagree – while the underlying fundamentals are similar, the “practices” you will use to achieve your learning outcomes in an online environment are very different.

We will lay out some steps to get you started, look at how course design is different when teaching online, give you some tips when teaching online, discuss common issues for managing your online class, provide some examples for class and student evaluation and assessment, and give you further resources to review as you continue to develop your class. 

In this resource guide, we have assembled research-based resources and background articles on each topic, as well as “how-to” processes and best practices covering a range of topics.  We begin with a white paper that lays the groundwork for rethinking teaching practices and processes for an online class.  Building from Content to Community: [Re]Thinking the Transition to Online Teaching and Learning (2009) will serve as a starting point for reflection  as you begin this process.

After you have reviewed the white paper, use the menu above to jump to the resources you most need (or start in Getting Started and work your way through all resources).  For those who desire a consultation with any of us in the CTE, use the links provided in Additional Resources.

Welcome to the world of online teaching and learning!

Printable version of this resource guide

Creative Commons License
Unless otherwise indicated, all content on the CTE's website is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-Share Alike 3.0 Unported License. To view a copy of this license, visit http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-sa/3.0/ or send a letter to Creative Commons, 171 Second Street, Suite 300, San Francisco, California, 94105, USA.


Virginia Commonwealth University  |  Center for Teaching Excellence
Last updated: 09/22/2009
Contact webmaster
Academic Learning Commons
1000 Floyd Avenue, Suite 4102
Richmond, VA 23284
(804) 828-4470