Developing Effective Online Learning Spaces: Online Seminars

Online Course Design – Spring 2021


This 5-module Online Course Design Seminar runs from February 26 until April 2 and is open to all who teach - faculty, instructors, postdocs, and grad students. Beginning February 26, the topical modules will open on Fridays and include a Zoom conversation on the following Thursdays from 3:00–4:00 p.m. (full schedule below). 


Seminar Overview

Participants in this Seminar will gather in a Canvas course site to explore online course design through four topical modules that include curated resources, CEI-facilitated discussion forums, and activities created to support peer interactions. The seminar will close with a 5th Module for assignment/document exchange, allowing participants to seek and offer feedback on course materials. Instructors who participate in the discussion activities for 4 of the 5 modules and complete the synthesizing activity will receive a letter of completion from the Center for Educational Innovation.

Note: This seminar is designed for those who have some experience using a course site in Canvas to support their instruction and engage with students. To learn more about Canvas and building your course site prior to participating in this seminar, visit the Canvas Overview webpage.

Individual Modules Topics & Seminar Schedule 

Plan to engage the seminar for 3 hours per week to review resources and participate in discussion forum posting and replying.

Note: All Zoom conversations will be held from 3:00-4:00 p.m. on the Thursdays listed below.

  • Module 1: Setting Online Course Atmosphere - learner & teacher presence
    • Facilitated Module, February 26–March 4 || Conversation, March 4
  • Module 2: Developing Learning Aims for Online Courses - sequencing course learning
    • Facilitated Module, March 5–11 || Conversation, March 11
  • Module 3: Framing effective online discussions and team activities and assignments
    • Facilitated Module, March 12–18 || Conversation, March 18
  • Module 4: Creating/adapting assessments of online learning
    • Facilitated Module, March 19–25 || Conversation, March 25
  • Module 5: Synthesis Assignment
    • Final project due April 1. Feedback from facilitators and participants from April 2–8.

Zoom Conversations

We’ll host these sessions on Thursdays from 3:00-4:00 p.m. for participants who wish to move through the seminar as an interactive cohort. The conversations will focus equally on ideas and queries participants have shared in discussion forums, and on current questions. 


Making a Good Online Course Even Better – Spring 2021

Build on your existing online teaching skills with a supportive group of colleagues in this 5-week online seminar. Learn more about using multimedia effectively, creating learning centered online syllabi, and gathering and providing feedback in online learning environments. Participants who participate in the discussion activities for 4 of the 5 modules and complete the final project will receive a letter of completion from the Center for Educational Innovation.

Schedule & Format

This 5-Module Online Course Design Seminar runs from January 27 until March 4, 2021 and is open to all who teach - faculty, instructors, postdocs, and grad students. Zoom conversation on Mondays from 3:30-4:30 p.m. Central Time on February 1, 8, 15, and 22.


Register by January 20, 2021 via Training Hub

Seminar Overview

This 5-week online seminar for University of Minnesota instructors is set up in Canvas so that you can explore, experience and analyze pedagogical practices from a learner’s perspective in order to consider what you might adapt or incorporate as you (re)design your online or hybrid courses.

You’ve taught an online or hybrid course in the past and have experience creating activities and interacting with students in those environments. Now what? If you’re interested in building your online teaching skills with a supportive group of colleagues, this seminar is for you.

The modules in this online seminar will address:

  • creating community, engagement, and instructor presence in your course,
  • using video and multimedia effectively,
  • creating learning-centered online syllabi, and
  • strategies for gathering and providing feedback in the online environment.

In addition to exploring the topics mentioned above, you’ll have an opportunity to develop and present a new or revised teaching strategy that you’d like to pilot in a future version of your course. 


Contact Mary Jetter or Alyssa Bonnac

Developing Multicultural Inclusive Learning & Teaching Spaces – Fall 2021

This Seminar is available fully online via Canvas, with other system-supported tools incorporated across the seminar.

  • The MILT Seminar Canvas site’s Welcome page opens on September 1 with the first Module work beginning on September 14th.
  • The Fall 2020 Seminar Overview provides information about seminar purposes, and module focuses, along with specific dates for each module.
  • Participants will explore MILT as it applies to their online and face-to-face teaching contexts. 

Enrollment options: 

This seminar is not currently open for enrollment/registration. Indicate your interest in future participation and we'll notify you when it is offered next.

Completion requirements: 

Tenure-track faculty and fulltime P&A staff and instructors: 

  • To earn a certificate of completion, participants must (1) be active in four of the five seminar modules, completing all discussions and activities for those four modules, and (2) join in the drafting, sharing, and revision of  one of the two assignment modules.

Graduate students and postdoctoral fellows may join the seminar to earn a certificate of completion, or may opt to enroll in a one-credit, tuition-based graduate course, completing additional activities to earn a course grade:

  • To earn a Certificate or “B” grade, participants will (1) be active in four of the five seminar modules, completing all discussions and activities, and (2) complete one of the two assignment modules. 
  • To earn an “A” grade, participants will complete “B” requirements, and the second assignment module.

Questions? Contact Ilene Alexander.