Article 4 - Coastal Carolina University
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Alison Hamilton

Moving Online: Making a Plan and Collaborating with Colleagues

Alison Hamilton, teaching associate; finance and economics; Wall College of Business

On Thursday, March 5, 2020, my CBAD 363-01 students took their second exam and headed off to spring break. Never did I imagine that we would never meet in a traditional classroom setting again. I love teaching. I love standing in front of a classroom twice a week interacting in a learning community. We share stories, ideas, and encouragement.

On Wednesday, March 11, I was told that spring break would be extended and that I should prepare to teach online. What?!?!?  Online!?!?! Moodle?!?!? I am familiar with Moodle. I use Moodle to enter my students’ grades. In fact, this semester I have stepped it up and posted PowerPoint slides for my students. Also, I posted material for an online assignment when our class was redirected for Professional Development Activities (PDA) Day, but anytime that we miss class due to flooding or hurricane, I have elected to make up class face-to-face. How will I ever prepare to teach online?

Fortunately for me, I rely on CeTEAL. You see, this semester CeTEAL offered additional teaching associate training to bring us into a group. After this day of training, I was assigned a CeTEAL liaison based on my needs. Since I need lots of help with Moodle, I was assigned Tracy Gaskin. After discovering that we were going online, I scheduled a face-to-face meeting with Tracy Gaskin on Friday, April 13.

I met with her on Friday morning. She helped me create a plan. The plan is as follows:

  1. Following the request from Provost Ennis to help test Moodle system capacity, submit a journal question to my students on Tuesday, March 17.
  2. Communicate with COOL to let them know that I will be requesting access to Moodle content for two other CBAD 363 professors that teach online.
  3. Email Butch Smith and Hongxia Wang to ask if they will provide me access to their CBAD 363 Moodle content.
  4. Using Smith and Wang’s CBAD 363 Moodle content, build my own course content.
  5. Contact the textbook publisher; McGraw-Hill is providing free access to Connect for my students.
  6. Schedule an online training session with Patrick Havens at McGraw-Hill to learn about Connect.
  7. Request Wang to allow to copy her Connect materials into my Connect.
  8. Using Wang’s Connect materials and assistance from Patrick Havens at McGraw-Hill, create Connect content.

So, how am I doing? Well, my plan is a work is process.  I have learned so much. Ariana Baker, scholarly engagement librarian, has helped me with video content for my course.  I have reached out and received help from Sherri Restauri and Kiara Hurt from COOL. Our University offers many resources. I have and will continue to take all the help I can get in life. Thanks to everyone who has helped me.

This semester is not ending as I would like, but as my father always tells me anytime there is uncertainty, there is opportunity, and anytime there is change, there is opportunity. This semester has provided me with many opportunities to step outside my comfort zone and grow.