Teaching online or hybrid for the first time? Let us help you prepare!

If you are planning (or have been asked) to teach online or hybrid courses in the future, the CEAL and eLearning are here to help you prepare.

In order to teach online or hybrid courses are Pierce College faculty are required to successfully complete three training courses: Canvas Essentials (CE), the Transition to Teaching Online (TTOL) course, and the Applying the Quality Matters Rubric (APPQMR) workshop. These training opportunities are highly recommended for all faculty, even those with no plans for teaching online – learning the tools and processes can help you in the grounded classroom, too!

Canvas Essentials (CE) offered by eLearning is a self-directed, facilitated course that will help you develop skills for using the eCampus classrooms with your students!

Transition to Teaching Online (TTOL) offered by the Center for Engagement and Learning (CEAL) is a 5-weeks long course where you will learn about online teaching resources, planning, and strategies.

Applying the Quality Matters Rubric (APPQMR) offered by the State Board or Quality Matters, is an asynchronous, online course that introduces to the Quality Matter Rubric and Standards for online course design improvement.

Register for CE

Read more about and register for the TTOL

Learn more about the APPQMR

Last updated November 6th, 2017

Improving Instructor-Student Engagement Online

You may have heard of the Department of Education Inspector General’s (IG) report on Western Governor’s University (WGU). You can read about it here.

Basically, the IG recommended that WGU repay the Department of Education all Title IV (Financial Aid) funds they have received of the past few years, to the tune of about $712 Million. The main reason – lack of “regular and substantive interaction between students and faculty members.” In essence, the IG said a number of WGU’s online Competency Based Education courses are “correspondence courses” and not eligible for Financial Aid.

The “good news” is that the Department of Education is not bound by the IGs recommendation. Several blog posts and articles by experts in online education (WGET, e-LiterateInside Higher-Ed) offer various views of the report. Most indicate WGU will prevail and not lose funding. But they also indicate we, as higher education, need to do better with interactions for our online courses.

As a district we need to ensure all of our courses – grounded, hybrid, and online alike – are not correspondence courses and have regular and substantive interaction. It’s not an easy thing to do, especially online, but it’s something we need to ensure is happening.

So, what can we do? A session presented at the QM Connect conference this week offers some suggestions.

The ideas presented in the session can help, but it still requires we not only include the opportunities, but take charge and ensure we communicate with our students. Here are some ideas to help get us started:

Weekly announcements (audio, video, written – don’t forget captions)
Substantive feedback for assessments – even if you use a rubric you can add some individualized comments
Discussions – weekly discussion posts on topical items. Include a “Muddiest Point” forum where students can ask questions. Encourage everyone to help out.

What else can we do? Feel free to add a comment.

Upcoming Quality Matters Training

qm_logo_1(updated 09/22/2017) Quality Matters’ Applying the Quality Matters Rubric (APPQMR) is one of the three required trainings all hybrid and online faculty must successfully complete to be authorized to teach online for Pierce College.

The schedule below is for the State Board-sponsored APPQMR sessions:

System Offered QM Workshop Titles *

If you are interested in registering for one of the above sessions, please use the State Board’s Registration Form.

The following are the upcoming dates offered by QM for the Improving Your Online Course (IYOC) workshop. If you have already completed the APPQMR, especially if it’s been over a couple of years, this workshop will help you re-orient to the QM Rubric and let you review your own course. Note: You must have a completed online course before registering for this workshop.

System Offered QM Workshop Title *

If you are interested in registering for one of the above sessions, please use the State Board’s Registration Form.

The schedule below is for the upcoming APPQMR sessions hosted at QM. To register for the QM-offered APPQMR, please let JJ know, and provide which course/workshop, preference for start date, your primary campus, and teaching discipline. Please DO NOT register yourself.

Session Title Start Date End Date
Applying the QM Rubric (APPQMR) 2017-09-26 2017-10-10
Applying the QM Rubric (APPQMR) 2017-09-26 2017-10-10
Applying the QM Rubric (APPQMR) 2017-10-03 2017-10-17
Applying the QM Rubric (APPQMR) 2017-10-10 2017-10-24
Applying the QM Rubric (APPQMR) 2017-10-17 2017-10-31
Applying the QM Rubric (APPQMR) 2017-10-24 2017-11-07
Applying the QM Rubric (APPQMR) 2017-10-31 2017-11-14
Applying the QM Rubric (APPQMR) 2017-11-07 2017-11-21
Applying the QM Rubric (APPQMR) 2017-11-14 2017-11-28
Applying the QM Rubric (APPQMR) 2017-11-21 2017-12-26
Applying the QM Rubric (APPQMR) 2017-11-28 2017-12-12
Applying the QM Rubric (APPQMR) 2017-12-05 2017-12-19
Applying the QM Rubric (APPQMR) 2018-01-09 2018-01-23
Applying the QM Rubric (APPQMR) 2018-01-16 2018-01-30
Applying the QM Rubric (APPQMR) 2018-01-23 2018-02-06
Applying the QM Rubric (APPQMR) 2018-01-30 2018-02-13
Applying the QM Rubric (APPQMR) 2018-02-06 2018-02-20
Applying the QM Rubric (APPQMR) 2018-02-13 2018-02-27
Applying the QM Rubric (APPQMR) 2018-02-20 2018-03-06
Applying the QM Rubric (APPQMR) 2018-02-27 2018-03-13
Applying the QM Rubric (APPQMR) 2018-03-06 2018-03-20
Applying the QM Rubric (APPQMR) 2018-03-13 2018-03-27
Applying the QM Rubric (APPQMR) 2018-03-20 2018-04-03
Applying the QM Rubric (APPQMR) 2018-03-27 2018-04-10

Join us – We’re looking for a few good Reviewers

Quality Matters LogoIf you are teaching online and/or hybrid courses for Pierce College, and have already completed the Quality Matters – Applying the Quality Matters Rubric (APPQMR) workshop and are ready for more experience in using the QM Rubric, we are looking to expand our Quality Assurance-Quality Matters (QA-QM) Lite Review Teams.  Specifically, we need subject matter experts in every discipline.

To join our teams, you will need to successfully complete the 2 weeks long Peer Reviewer Course (PRC) – an asynchronous online course. We’ll pair you up with experienced Reviewers to form a Review Team to help Review courses. You may also wish to Review courses outside of Pierce College – a great experience to see how courses are designed and developed outside of our institution.

You can learn more about the PRC training by visiting the QM Website.

Here are the upcoming PRC offerings. Please review but do not register – let me know and I’ll facilitate the registration.

Session Title Start Date End Date
Peer Reviewer Course (PRC) 2017-09-19 2017-10-04
Peer Reviewer Course (PRC) 2017-09-26 2017-10-11
Peer Reviewer Course (PRC) 2017-10-03 2017-10-18
Peer Reviewer Course (PRC) 2017-10-10 2017-10-25
Peer Reviewer Course (PRC) 2017-10-17 2017-11-01
Peer Reviewer Course (PRC) (3 week session) 2017-10-17 2017-11-07
Peer Reviewer Course (PRC) (3 week session) 2017-10-17 2017-11-07
Peer Reviewer Course (PRC) 2017-10-24 2017-11-08
Peer Reviewer Course (PRC) 2017-10-31 2017-11-15
Peer Reviewer Course (PRC) 2017-11-07 2017-11-22
Peer Reviewer Course (PRC) 2017-11-14 2017-11-29
Peer Reviewer Course (PRC) 2017-11-21 2017-12-06
Peer Reviewer Course (PRC) 2017-11-28 2017-12-13
Peer Reviewer Course (PRC) 2017-12-05 2017-12-20

Interested or have questions? Contact JJ Johnson (jjohnson@pierce.ctc.edu)


Did you know? Course Outcomes

Quality Matters Logo

Course Outcomes at Pierce College are approved through the Learning Council, and can be found for each course taught by going to the Course Manager (https://inetapps.pierce.ctc.edu/CrsMgt/Login.aspx.) Log in using the same  information you use for Instructor Briefcase.

Among the 21 Essential Standards we Review during our QA-QM Lite Reviews, two stick out. Both are related to outcomes. The Standards are 2.1 and 2.2. In this entry, I’ll address Standard 2.1.

Standard 2.1 states “The course learning objectives, or course/program competencies, describe outcomes that are measurable.”

The Annotation for Standard 2.1 tell us, “Measurable course learning objectives or competencies precisely and clearly describe what learners will learn and be able to do if they successfully complete the course. Course objectives or competencies describe desired learner mastery using terms that are specific and observable enough to be measured by the instructor. At some institutions, learning objectives or competencies may be called “learning outcomes.””

What does this mean? Learning outcomes are very important and are used in all Pierce College courses to provide a way to assess student mastery of the course materials. Since course outcomes are approved at the Learning Council, we cannot change them without going through the proper process. We still have to use them in our courses, though. During a Review the Reviewers will look at the course-level outcomes to see if they are measurable. If the course outcomes are not measurable, Reviewers may make some suggestions for improvement that could be taken to the department during a curriculum review to see if updating the outcomes is desirable.

Reviewers also review the outcomes as the outcomes are referred to time and again during the Review, when looking at activities, assessments, tools and even learning material to see how each support the outcomes, or are supported by the outcomes.

If 85% or more of the outcomes are measurable, great! Sometimes, however, they don’t hit the 85% level. So the second part of Standard 2.1 comes into play – looking at the module or learning unit outcomes to determine if they are measurable. If the module-level outcomes are measurable, Standard 2.1 is met and the Review proceeds.

However, if there are no outcomes listed, or if the course-level outcomes are not measurable *and* the module-level outcomes are either missing or not measurable, the Review stops. Normally the Review Chair (a QM trained Master Reviewer) will contact the faculty member to discuss the issue and steps needed to continue with the Review.

To wrap this up – course level outcomes are critical for student success. They help us (and the student) determine what they need to master or understand of the course material to be successful in the course.. For course design and in a QM Review, we use course level outcomes as the cornerstone upon which all other elements of a course is built. Without the course level outcomes, we cannot effectively build a course. So, ensure your course has its outcomes listed prominently, and use them for reference as your students work through your course.

Do you know who is taking that online assessment? Proctoring can help!

One of our requirements for both our accreditation and the Department of Education is verification of our online students. Making sure the student who signed up for the class is the one who is taking the assessments is a method of verifying the identity of students during assessments. We have an option that may fit your needs, and help satisfy our requirements. Electronic proctoring using RemoteProctorNow (PRNow) is a way to set up your assessments to have online proctoring.

eLearning will set up some training before the end of the Winter Quarter to give those interested in trying RPNow in their courses. If you’re interested in learning more, please complete our interest survey: https://goo.gl/forms/gek1MZw8GqKNfDe43.

Let us know if you have questions.

Join us – We’re expanding our QA-QM Lite Review Teams!

Quality Matters LogoIf you have completed the Quality Matters – Applying the Quality Matters Rubric (APPQMR) workshop and are ready for more experience in using the QM Rubric, we are looking to expand our Quality Assurance-Quality Matters (QA-QM) Lite Review Teams.  You will need to successfully complete the 2 weeks long Peer Reviewer Course (asynchronous online course). We’ll pair you up with experienced Reviewers to form a Review Team to help Review courses. You may also wish to review courses outside of Pierce College – which is a great experience to see courses outside of our institution.

Interested? Contact JJ Johnson (jjohnson@pierce.ctc.edu)

Applications are now open! The Connie Broughton Leadership & Innovation in eLearning

The eLearning Council (eLC) of the State Board of Community and Technical Colleges (SBCTC, or State Board) has opened nominations and applications for “The Connie Broughton Leadership and Innovation in eLearning Award 2017.” This is an excellent award that recognizes leadership and innovation in a number of areas of eLearning. The award will be presented at the annual Assessment, Teaching and Learning (ATL) conference, with travel paid by the eLC!


Are you doing new or interesting things that affect learners in online, hybrid/blended, or web-enhanced courses? Are your friends and colleagues wowed and amazed at your innovation? If so, you, YES YOU, are an eLearning leader or innovator. OR do you know of someone who is doing great things and probably wouldn’t apply for themselves? Share what you or others know and are doing with the rest of our state community and technical colleges by applying for The Connie Broughton Leadership & Innovation in eLearning Award this year. APPLICATIONS DUE BY FEBRUARY 28, 2017. Visit the following website for details and a link to the application form: https://sites.google.com/site/waelearningcouncil/award.

REMEMBER: you can apply for yourself or for someone else. I know all of you are doing incredible things that deserve recognition as well. Don’t short-change yourself or your colleagues by failing to apply for this award.

Teaching or taking classes with Pierce College at JBLM? Bookstore info!

If you are teaching or taking classes at Pierce College at JBLM, regardless of mode, our bookstore has moved! We no longer use MBS, but are now using the Pierce College Barnes & Noble Bookstore.

To get your book(s), you will need the Pierce item number for your course(s) in order to purchase the correct text(s). This number is available on the JBLM grounded (opens in a new tab), and online schedules (opens in a new tab).

When you have the item number(s) for your course(s), go to the Pierce College Bookstore – opens in a new tab.