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Course Redesign Checklist

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The following set of questions can act as a final checklist to ensure that your redesign plan has taken the key elements of successful redesign into account. If you are able to answer each of these questions thoughtfully and concretely, your plan has an excellent chance of achieving its academic and financial goals and benefits for students, faculty and your institution.

Course Organization

  • Which of the five models do you intend to use? Why have you selected it?
  • Do you intend to redesign the whole course?
  • How will students to be actively engaged with course content?
  • Have you incorporated opportunities for student collaboration and/or team-based learning? How will this be accomplished?
  • How will you provide students with more individualized assistance than you were able to offer in the traditional format?
  • How do you plan to incorporate ongoing assessment and prompt feedback for students? Will these activities be a mandatory part of the course?
  • How will you ensure that students spend sufficient time on task? How will you monitor student progress? How will you deal with students who are falling behind?

Cost Reduction

  • Have you considered what aspects of the course require face-to-face time and what aspects of the course can be conducted online?
  • Do you have a plan to automate grading where possible (e.g., low stakes quizzes, homework exercises, and so on)? How will this be accomplished?
  • Have you thought about how to increase the person-to-person assistance available to students? Who will do this and how?
  • Have you considered the use of various kinds of personnel that can provide needed student assistance and complete administrative tasks (e.g., undergraduate peer tutors, graduate teaching assistants, course assistants, preceptors, and so on)? Who will do what?
  • Have you considered combining multiple sections of the course into a fewer number? Have you thought about a division of labor among multiple faculty members in order to reduce duplication?
  • Have you consulted with administrative staff (e.g., registrar, facilities planners, IT staff) about the impact of your redesign on their functions?

Assessment of Student Learning

  • Have you selected a method for obtaining data to compare student learning outcomes (e.g., parallel sections vs. baseline) during the pilot phase?
  • Have you selected a method for obtaining data to compare student learning outcomes (e.g., baseline data from "before" the redesign vs. baseline data from the pilot) during the full implementation phase?
  • Which of the five measurement methods will you use?
  • Have you decided how you will implement your assessment plan, including working with others who may need to collect or analyze data?
  • How do you plan to conduct other comparisons between the traditional and redesigned format?
  • Are you prepared to collect course completion results for both the pilot and traditional phases? Do you have baseline data on course completion for comparative purposes?

Implementation

  • Do you have a plan to prepare students (and their parents) for the transition from the traditional format to the new format? How will you do this?
  • Have you established ways to assess and provide for learner readiness to engage in IT-based courses? How will you do this?
  • If your course involves teaching assistants, adjunct faculty or undergraduate peer tutors, how will you orient and train them, both initially and ongoing?
  • How do you plan to move beyond the initial course designers and enlist other faculty in teaching the redesigned course?
  • How will you ensure student access to computers, the network and any other technological resources they need?
  • How will you provide technical support for students in navigating instructional software, using course-management systems, and so on? Who will do this?
  • If your course redesign involves computer labs, do you have adequate laboratory classroom space and equipment to offer the course in the redesigned format?
  • How will you deal with course management software changes and updates?
  • Can the software products you have selected accommodate large number of students (e.g., 25 vs. 200)? Are your servers adequate for the scale of your redesign?
  • Have you achieved initial consensus among all faculty teaching the course about curricular issues including core course outcomes, topic sequences, instructional format, textbook selection, a common Web site (e.g., terminology and interactivity), and so on?
  • How do you plan to achieve ongoing faculty consensus about the redesign?
  • How do you plan to achieve ongoing departmental and institutional commitment to the redesign?