Distance Learning Training and Resources for Educators

This coming Monday and Tuesday I am presenting with Roberto Muffoletto Director of the Vasa Project at the North Carolina Community College Faculty Conference in Raleigh NC.

We had so much to cover in our Challenges for Faculty Presentation I am posting my PowerPoint here and asking those who attended to comment about the presentation and/or add to the list of challenges we face or post any solutions you may have to the ones we shared.

Click Here to Download Challenges POWERPOINT Presentation


If you have any SOLUTIONS to any of these issues and challenges please post them here! Lastly try to stay POSITIVE as you navigate this new terrain.


Comments on: "Continue the Conversation – Challenges for Faculty….." (13)

  1. Bryan Oesterreich said:

    Hi Patrick – Very well done presentation today. James Casey and I enjoyed it. You hit on many of the issues we all face.


    One thing I try to do is structure my online courses as simply as I can. I’ve seen so many courses that confuse Me! I also minimize Blackboard class activity and make use of email whenever I can. And I try to keep it to “one click to the link.”

    I saw two of my colleagues join in this morning – Penny Sermons and Tricia Woolard. I’m looking forward to their comments.

    Bryan Oesterreich
    Beaufort Comm. Coll.

    • Thanks for the feedback Bryan! Keeping things relatively simple is a good idea, however I rather use the assignment manager and/or discussion board feature in BB because I find it easier to manage than students sending me e-mail. That’s just me though. Yes..I noticed Penny and Tricia were in the webinar and I hope they post their thoughts as to the issues we raised in the session today.

      • Bryan Oesterreich said:

        Hi – Yes – I use Discussion Board – but refrain from many of the bells and whistles available. But – I’m teaching writing – so I’m probably more able to keep it short and sweet!

  2. Jean Smolkowicz said:

    I enjoyed your presentation and agree with you regarding ILLOs and PLLOs. I also agree that technology is what students want and we must adjust our teaching to the students. Thanks,

  3. Scott A. Weir said:

    I think most of us who teach identify strongly with all of the challenges you identify, and their potential threat to the teaching/learning process. I believe most people face similar challenges in their lives and work, also driven by the accelerating pace of change, in technology certainly but in every aspect of the way humans exist in society on earth. Except for the specific context of today’s presentation, the underlying issues are much the same as those identified by futurist Rick Spyre in his luncheon talk on Monday and his session immediately following. His point that is perhaps most relevant to the online teaching community referred to a parallel process (I’m paraphrasing) of doing what we have to do to meet requirements imposed from outside (authority, society in general), while actively creating the emerging future, which he called “leading from the middle.” I don’t have much respect for futurists as a group, but there seems to be a convergence on this realization that we are at a point in human history where we face great stress, but also great opportunity created as old structures and ways of thinking break down from the stress. Solutions lie in recognition of problems within the community, and sharing ideas that help us meet those outside demands (and in some cases to question them effectively) with the least disruption of our ever-changing approaches to our mostly constant mission.

  4. Bryan Oesterreich said:

    Scott –

    “Solutions lie in recognition of problems within the community, and sharing ideas that help us meet those outside demands (and in some cases to question them effectively) with the least disruption of our ever-changing approaches to our mostly constant mission.”


    As an English instructor, all of this obviously troubles me! (texting – etc)

    Seems like those of us at the near end of our careers (like me) might do well to pass the torch to those entering the field of online instruction and remember, with favor, having 3 TV channels and a phone connected to the Wall!

  5. As much as I yearn for those simpler times when I didn’t wake up to 50 + e-mails and text messages, had a land line and 3 tv channels. I have accepted (for the most part) where we are on this technological continuum in education and in life in general. There are a lot of great things that technology has done for education, especially in the realm of distance learning and giving our students many more options for getting an education and attaining their educational goals. With that said..technology (computers) have not saved us any time nor made things easier for us – the opposite seems to be the reality of technology. So I suppose its about finding a balance in our personal and work lives and embracing change. Change is the constant in 2011 and beyond. With that said…I also believe some of the other demands on educators are unreasonable and a waste of precious time and energy and should be questioned because I honestly don’t see the benefit to me as an educator and to our students. Like I said in my presentation….it seems the powers that be are still looking at (evaluating) teaching and learning through a 20th century industrial age model and it no longer fits our 21st Century approach.

  6. Roberto Muffoletto said:

    Hello everyone,

    I was happy to take part in the discussion — being in the Netherlands — If I would leave you with a few ideas they would go like this…

    • teaching on line or FTF is first off all about philosophy and design
    • activating your philosophy of education, schooling, learning, and evaluation through a well thought out design process
    • working with administrators who understand is critical
    • following your “gut” and “passion” to provide the best learning experience you can.

    Roberto Muffoletto

  7. Thanks for posting these thoughts Roberto. Its unfortunate that so much of teaching and learning has gotten so bogged down with the demands of bureaucracy, government regulations and data accumulation. I fear much of the intuition and passion is being thwarted by powers that faculty have very minimal control over. Still great teaching whether it be online or in the classroom still is about passion and enthusiasm for learning and your subject matter.

  8. Trisha Miller said:

    I really enjoyed the presentation. I liked the way that Patrick and Roberto were “live” with Patrick actually being in the room but yet the technology was being utilized with Roberto all the way in the Netherlands and providing real time input. I teach respiratoray therapy and feel the need for class room instruction due to the content but I want to be proactive and prepare for the future as technology rapidly changes. Each student learns in different ways and these needs should be met and as students and instructors face challenges, we have to adapt in a way in which the student is most benefited. I do believe teaching and learning should be number one priorities for instructors.

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  10. I could really relate to the things presented in your session! I am also teaching Art online but my additional challenge is being an adjunct instructor on top of the idea of just utilizing DL tools for my classroom. I would love to learn more about your DL courses!

  11. Amy Davis said:

    Here at NC3ADL 2011 at your presentation, “Future Challenges for College Faculty”…as the Title III Project Director at Cleveland CC, one of the biggest challenges I have is defending the data of our online and hybrid success (pass) rates. We have some amazing faculty who are doing great things in their online classes, but even a poorly designed online class can have a class full of A’s and B’s, etc. It’s difficult to quantify success in online classes. Many students still withdrawal from online classes because they realize the workload is much more than they anticipated. Even the best online instructor has a difficult time talking a student out of that decision.

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