Teaching Online FAQ


What is required for me to teach an online course?

The following is required before teaching an online course at WIU. The following is preferred before teaching an online course at WIU.
  • Copy the Online Course Template before development begins (Contact CITR to have this done).

What is the Best Practices in Teaching Online course?

  • In this course, you will explore both the opportunities and the challenges of teaching online. You will experience online learning as both a student and an educator, building empathy for both roles. You will consider what is unique about learning online, as well as learning principles that stand consistent no matter what the delivery system.
  • This online course is instructor‐facilitated and includes weekly discussions, individual and small group activities. Throughout the course, participants will construct a sample online course syllabus that considers course goals and objectives suitable for an online course, an online communications strategy, and the selection of student learning activities and assessments.
  • For more info on the course see the Best Practices in Teaching Online page here: http://www.wiu.edu/CITR/services/bpto.php

How do I register for the Best Practices in Teaching Online course?

To register for the course, please login to your WIU gmail account. Then click the link below to submit the registration form. Once you are registered, you will receive a welcome letter via email and a book via campus mail approximately one week prior to the course start date. NOTE: Books must be returned to CITR at the conclusion of the course. Please do not mark or highlight in them as they will be used for future sections of the course.

What is the Western Illinois University Online Course Requirement Checklist?

The Western Illinois University Online Course Requirement Checklist is a list of requirements that all online courses at WIU must meet before being approved and going live. Use the checklist as a guide when developing your course. A CITR representative will go through the checklist and work with you to make sure everything is in place before the course can be approved. You can access the checklist here: http://www.wiu.edu/CITR/services/docs/online_checklist_draft.pdf.

An online course only needs to be approved in the following instances:
  • The course is being taught online for the first time.
  • The course is changing instructors.
  • The course is being redeveloped.

What is the Online Course Template?

The Online Course Template is a template built in Western Online that contains the structure of an online course with many items required by the checklist already in place. Instructors can customize and plug in their own content into place. Contact CITR (309.298.2434) to have the template copied into your Western Online course shell. Instructions for customizing the template can be found here: https://docs.google.com/document/d/12XNh9LCqh6Hi-zPRUMNHKe2l6HYIz7WyJGyhr6BHg4s/edit?usp=sharing.

What is the Online Course Syllabus Template?

The Online Course Syllabus Template is an accessibe template built in Microsoft Word that contains all of the required sections for an online course syllabus. There is a companion website with some examples of what to put in some of the section.

What is the Online Course Evaluation (OCE), and how do I use it?

The Online Course Evaluation (OCE) system is the online version of your end of course evaluations that your students fill out. Before using the OCE, faculty need to verify they have an approved instrument/evaluation (contacting Sharon Thompson - SK-Thompson2@wiu.edu). Only chairs and directors of the academic programs can set dates and retrieve course evaluations. You can access the OCE here: https://www.wiu.edu/OCE. To add the link into your Western Online course, follow the instruction on the tip sheet below.