Digital Learning Blog

Course Planning Worksheet – How to Set Up an Online Course During an Emergency

by | Jan 6, 2022 | Digital Learning Blog, Pedagogical Practice

Recently I read an article aboutThe Value of Worksheets for Asynchronous Online Course” by Meriah L. Crawford, Faculty Focus, Faculty Focus, Higher Ed Teaching Strategies from Magna Publications.

When the pandemic first started, most of us were struggling to set up our courses to be delivered remotely. We had to shift from in-person classroom meetings to zoom meetings, students learning from home, and even lab-work needed to be somehow transitioned to a contactless format. Many questions came from faculty, such as how will I interact with students via zoom? How should I set up my class activities for distance learning? To support our faculty and their concerns, our department created the “Digital Learning Institute (DLI)” to assist faculty in developing remote teaching courses. To simplify the process of transitioning from in-person to remote, we developed the “Course planning worksheet.” This worksheet helps faculty organize their learning content and activities in a way that lets them easily view their weekly course content at a glance. It also encourages faculty to align their learning outcomes with their readings and activities which can help faculty measure student learning and understanding.  It’s a live document that can change and evolve as needed. 

When I read “The Value of Worksheets for Asynchronous Online Course,” I found that preparation is an essential element to creating a measurable, engaging, and understandable learning environment for our students. You may still feel skeptical with thoughts such as: “I have no time to plan, and this is a live course; I don’t need it…etc.” But try to keep an open mind; using a course planning worksheet can ultimately help you stay organized and save a lot of time.

The DTEI team has developed two course planning worksheets that you can use to develop and organize your courses: The Hybrid/Flipped Planning Worksheet & The Online Course Planning Worksheet


About the Author:

Shu Fen (Fannie) Tsai, M.S.
Instructional Designer, Division of Teaching Excellence and Innovation (DTEI)

Fannie Tsai has over ten years of experience promoting teaching excellence in higher education. As an instructional designer at the Division of Teaching Excellence and Innovation, she supports faculty in designing courses and content for various teaching modes with backward design and learning technologies. UCI faculty appreciate her help in creating a mastery learning path to guide students’ learning. In addition, Fannie is passionate about inclusive teaching. She devotes diligence to facilitating faculty using inclusive technologies to design an accessible learning environment for all students. Fannie joined DTEI in September 2019 after nine years of service as an instructional technology designer at SDSU. She has a B.A. degree in Multimedia/Programing and an M.S. degree in Instructional Technology.