VIU Online Education recognizes the pivotal role of faculty in facilitating online courses and the dynamic technological environment in which online courses are delivered. Therefore, VIU offers many opportunities for professional development for the online faculty.
All VIU faculty, including on-campus and online instructors, use the Canvas LMS to facilitate and manage their courses. VIU faculty is provided with the following training opportunities:
Canvas Training Courses
VIU Online offers a series of instructor training and certification courses to get faculty ready for 1) Using Canvas LMS in Face-to-face and Hybrid Courses, 2) Online Course Facilitation, and 3) Course Development and Revision. VIU Online also provides a SandBox course to every instructor.
Course Building Process
When an instructor starts building an online course several months prior to the launch of the course, VIU Online team observes the course development process and communicates with course developers continuously to provide instructional design support and ensures the consistency in style, mechanics and expectations across all VIU online courseware. Course developers are required to complete all three trainings before starting any course revision or course build assignment. These trainings are open to all online and on-campus faculty, and as such serve as sources for ongoing professional development for the faculty.
Online Faculty Development and Mentoring
In addition to all the opportunities VIU provides for its faculty, VIU Online is involved in efforts to on-board and orient the new online faculty. Moreover, in an effort to train faculty on the best instructional practices for online teaching, VIU offers weekly seminars on topics pertinent to the online classroom and prepares informal learning environments for peer-to-peer learning and experience exchange. Online faculty is provided with free high quality resources online for perpetual professional growth.
Annually, or more often if there is a need, VIU offers technical training workshops for using the Canvas LMS. A cohort of first time online faculty members teaching in one semester will be trained on the specifics of the LMS immediately after the start of the previous semester to provide them with guidance and orientation of the specifics of the LMS in addition to the concept, structure, and features of the VIU Online courses.