SGEA Newsletter Teaching Tip on Teaching in a Virtual Environment – Jean Bailey, PhD

Fall semester is a time for new starts, new students, and new faculty. As we continue to navigate what we do to help our students learn in a virtual environment, how might you apply some of the same approaches to orient new faculty? Consider incorporating some of these ideas:

  • Consider a hybrid format for orientation—some people meeting in person; some online
  • Chunk information into smaller sessions to avoid overloading participants and to combat Zoom fatigue
  • Pre-record modules/podcasts containing orientation (evergreen) content for asynchronous access
  • Group new faculty into small groups/cohorts (6-8 people) for monthly virtual discussions around pre-recorded modules
  • Engage existing faculty members as leaders/co-leaders for each group to encourage introductions to local thought leaders as well as organize and facilitate virtual discussions
  • Create a landing page for all orientation information and faculty development contact information
  • Provide links to resources (pre-recorded modules, promotion/tenure goals worksheets, research plan templates, diversity/inclusion/equity best practices, wellness program information, and different department websites and contacts)
  • Use social media to connect people and communicate events
  • Coordinate large group virtual events/receptions with opportunities for smaller breakouts for people to network
  • Offer practice virtual teaching sessions using the technology available at your institution for those new to online teaching
  • Encourage peer facilitation or session collaboration to manage technology, chats, and breakout rooms

Train new faculty on learner engagement tools (e.g. direct poll, forum discussions, google docs, examination software, etc.)