2013 Award for Innovation in Instructional Technologies

An Experiential Faculty Development Program on Blended Learning
Justina Brown, Marc Ravaris, John Farquhar, Andrew Blick, Maggie Barklind, and Peter Agras, Western Washington University

Project website

The experiential faculty development program on blended learning leads faculty-participants through selected best practices in the preparation and delivery of blended and online courses. Throughout the program, faculty-participants experience a blended-format course, submit assignments for review, and receive constructive feedback from their colleagues under the guidance of a team of instructional designers and eLearning specialists at Western Washington University.

The program has been delivered in five- and six-week workshops. Participants are expected to spend about 6 hours each week conducting tasks, reading articles and completing assignments. Example assignments require participants to: create a syllabus and an assignment appropriate for a blended or online course; create a lecture-capture; practice providing online feedback; and, deliver an online, synchronous web conference. Workshop leaders as well as colleagues provide constructive feedback throughout.

Faculty who successfully complete all of the assignments receive a stipend as well as a certificate from WWU’s office of Extended Education.

Participant surveys have shown that the course changes faculty expectations about teaching blended and online courses, and that participants report feeling far more comfortable in using the tools and techniques appropriate for the practice. Thousands of students in many different curricular areas have benefited from the program.

The team’s curricular design, including goals and objectives, requirements, and schedule, are all publically available. An LMS-export of the workshop modules, readings, recordings and assignments can be provided upon request in either Blackboard or Canvas format.