Faculty Senate Update – August 12, 2021

Dear NMSU Family and Friends,

I’m sitting here working on my online course and thinking about all of you. I find this week to be a bit tough. On one hand, there is excitement for our students coming back and the incoming Class of Fall 2021. On the other hand, many of you with child/ren sent them to school this week and are holding your breath. I am holding my breath with you…

So as is possible, I hope you are finding moments of joy and peace with your families and friends. For some of those other moments, where we are preparing our courses for the fall, I want to share some online course design fun I am having with a resource. 

I really like the DesignPlus features BUT when I tried to attend a DesignPlus workshop, I was lost. I figured out a trick. One of my colleagues who knows DesignPlus well, created the templates for me in one of my development courses. I just turned that into a DesignPlus Template course and added it to our Canvas Creative Commons. If you are logged into Canvas the link should take you there. I request a development course anytime I develop a new course.

And now I start with these DesignPlus templates. You can download the DesignPlus Template course and then when you are in your development course or regular course, you can import using the Import Course Content feature on the right and selecting Canvas Course Export Package. Included in the templates are:

  • Homepage
  • Syllabus (of note, I do my engaged hours a bit differently as I think by module rather than by activity type – Example Modular Course Map)
  • Schedule
  • Resource module
  • 7 content modules – overviews are assignment pages as I note credit for everything I expect a student to do such as read the overview.

We have a lot of resources for most anything and I’m happy to help you connect. I just saw a great email from Beth Apodaca, Instructional Design Director with 1-1 instructional design and daily lab support for your learning design needs and questions. 

As always, I recommend we are prepared for our scenarios – best case, worst case, and most likely case. My favorite overarching tips are:

  1. If we have our courses setup as online courses, we are ready for any scenario.
  2. Remember our synchronous toolkit, especially Zoom.
    1. If you have a day/time in the schedule, you are ready with a physical location but if needed, you can be ready to keep our synchronous commitment to our students with a Zoom class that you can also record. Last year, common feedback from students was an appreciation for these recordings.
    2. If you have an asynchronous course, I still recommend providing synchronous opportunity. 

I am adding our updates to our blog at https://facultysenate.nmsu.edu/. But two things, 1) I’m pretty sure if you are off campus, you need to be logged into your VPN and 2) we are still updating the blog home page.

As you have needs, questions, concerns, please reach out. We are in this together ❤️

~julia

p.s. There is another fun thing I am working on and will share soon, so stay tuned… 

Sincerely & Stay Heathy, 
Dr. Julia Lynn Parra
Chair, NMSU Faculty Senate
FS Chair Office Hours: Wednesdays, 12-1:00pm MT, Zoom link
Email Contact: juparra@nmsu.edu 

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