Maryland institutions of higher education are beginning to plan for and
capitalize on the growth opportunities presented by student demand for quality
online courses and programs. Our peer institutions report explosive growth:
online enrollments at the College of Southern Maryland doubled in one year;
online enrollments at the Community College of Baltimore County more than
tripled in one year; and online enrollments at Anne Arundel Community College
have more than doubled each year for 3 successive years.
While recognized as a leader in telecredit delivery throughout the State,
Prince George’s Community College has not yet established itself as a
significant provider of online education. College faculty has responded to the
demonstrated growth opportunity presented by online courses by developing 19
online courses. This development resulted in a 110 % growth in online
enrollments from Fall 1998 to Spring 2000.
But the lack of a systematic process for selecting online courses for
development and training faculty has created a crisis situation: in Fall 2000,
19 online courses are scheduled for delivery. The instructors for these courses
have received no training in either the pedagogy of online instruction or the
delivery technologies, and there is no structured mechanism of review to ensure
standards of good practice. Without such training in place, the college cannot
consider itself prepared to compete in the online environment and cannot take
full advantage of the rapidly expanding market for online courses.
Many institutions, notably the Community College of Baltimore County, the
College of Southern Maryland, and Anne Arundel Community College have
established similar processes for training faculty, Prince George’s has an
opportunity to take a significant lead in one area. Each of these training
processes is built on the premise that a single faculty member develops a single
online course for his/her own use. There is no expectation of sharing this
course with colleagues if the faculty member chooses not to teach the course or
takes a sabbatical. And, more importantly, if enrollments in the course are
significant, it is not possible to hire adjunct faculty or another full time
faculty member to open an additional section because the course exists for the
exclusive use of the faculty-developer.
The Prince George’s Community College Online Express has the
opportunity to create a new and more dynamic model for online course
development. Built on the premise of teamwork among faculty, administrative
offices and technical support, the Online Express does not eliminate the
training of single faculty members to teach a single course. To do so would be
to stifle individual creativity and would eliminate the benefit of technology
integration into the curriculum typically seen after an instructor has
participated in online training.
Rather, the Online Express adds an exciting and valuable dimension:
specific courses that are typically heavily enrolled or oversubscribed will be
targeted by the Vice President for Instruction for team development. For
example, English 101 is a required course whose availability is frequently
limited by the lack of available space on campus. A "shared" online
English 101 courses would be developed by a team of three English faculty, with
the specific charge of developing a comprehensive, high quality, flexible course
for online delivery. This shared course can then be used by any full time
faculty member or any adjunct with a minimum of instructional technology
The Online Express initiative seeks to create a college-wide
structure for developing online courses that fosters creativity and focuses on
instruction within the context of a team approach. This project targets parallel
This project supports the college’s strategic plan and its emerging
technology initiatives. It incorporates the recent suggestions of CampusWorks to
integrate technology across the college and contributes to the college’s
understanding of intellectual property and copyright.
These initiatives position the college to participate fully in the Maryland
Community College Teleconsortium (MCCT), MarylandOnline, and other regional or
national distance learning initiatives.
To systematically develop academically rigorous interactive online courses,
create Online Express to train full-time and part-time instructors who
wish to adapt an existing course for online delivery during Fall 2000 or Spring
2001. The overarching goal of the project is to create a process that will be
sustainable over the two-year period required for the development of all courses
necessary to complete an online degree option. Courses will be developed by
individual faculty members and by faculty teams, as determined by the Vice
President for Instruction. Emphasis will be placed on developing high quality
course materials that meet or exceed the learning objectives established by the
Division or department.
This project will target three types of course development:
Web-based Course: Fully online courses developed using Front Page and
Blackboard. Equivalent to 6 ECH per faculty developer.
Shared Course: Single course developed by a team of three faculty
developers. Equivalent to 3 ECH for each faculty team member. These
courses will be designed to be delivered by multiple instructors.
TeleWeb Course: Existing telecourse to which a faculty developer will add
a substantial Web component using Blackboard and/or Front Page. Equivalent to 3
ECH per faculty developer.
Beginning in Fall 2000, faculty selected by the Vice President for
Instruction will participate in the Online Express, a series of informal
workshops given by the Distance Learning Center and faculty with online teaching
experience. Participating faculty will not only develop their courses but will
also provide feedback for the kinds of instructional and technical support
needed to efficiently adapt courses for the Web.
Online Express faculty agree to:
- participate in an online training program offered by the Technology
- teach an online course in the designated semester
- demonstrate the course material to a college audience and/or mentor
In recognition of the challenges inherent in creating online courses, the
College will provide significant resources to support faculty and to ensure that
our students have access to high quality distance learning, including:
- A stable technical infrastructure using Blackboard as the course delivery
- Initial training and on-going support from the Technology Resource Center
- Release time for faculty during the development phase and initial course
Selection of Courses
Preference will be given to the development of online courses that meet one
or more of the following criteria:
- meet the general education requirements
- are in great demand and frequently fill before all students who wish to
take the course can enroll
- are part of a certificate/degree program or a non-credit initiative
targeted for online delivery by the Vice President for Instruction or the
Vice President for Continuing Education
- Faculty who are teaching online for the first time in Fall 2000 are given
"just in time" training throughout the semester.
- By September 15, Division Chairs and faculty identify potential courses
for delivery in Spring 2001 and submit completed Proposal application to Dr.
Zdravkovich. Notification of course selection by October 1.
- Faculty who are teaching in Fall 2000 and selected faculty for Spring 2001
will participate in structured training in distance learning pedagogy and
the use of selected technologies (Blackboard and Front Page). The training
process begins on Friday, October 6, and continues on October 13, 20, 27;
November 3, 10, 17; December 1, 8. Time: 1:15 to 3:30.
- By November 1, Division Chairs and Faculty identify potential courses for
delivery in Fall 2001 and submit completed Proposal application to Dr.
Zdravkovich. Notification of course selection by November 15.
- By November 15, the Vice President for Instruction will
identify the first "shared" course to be developed
by a team of three faculty members.
- Selected faculty participates in 2-day training program in January and
attend regularly scheduled sessions every other week throughout the
- 8-10 NEW online courses are offered.
- By February 15, Division Chairs and Faculty identify potential courses for
delivery in Spring 2002 and submit completed Proposal application to Dr.
Zdravkovich. Notification of course selection by March 1.
- In May, selected faculty for Spring 2002 participate in 2-day training
- In May, faculty who have participated in Spring 2001 training demonstrate
their online courses components for colleagues and receive feedback.
- 12-15 NEW online courses are offered, including the first
- Selected faculty participates in 1-day training program and attends
regularly scheduled sessions every other week throughout the semester.
- By October 15, Division Chairs and Faculty identify potential courses for
delivery in Fall 2002 and submit completed Proposal application to Dr.
Zdravkovich. Notification of course selection by November 1.
Planning and Implementation Team
Admininstration: Oliver Hansen, Mary Wells, Sheilah Belkin, and
Faculty Consultant: Selected by Vice President for Instruction
Instructional Support Workgroup (as needed): Technology Resource Center,
Faculty Fellows (Drew Habermacher, Margot Chaires), Bridget Bartlebaugh,
Alan Mickelson, librarian, Testing and Tutoring, Records Office, Advising
Technology Workgroup: Information Technology Division, Web Master
This systematic structured approach is designed to produce the following
- 13 faculty teaching in Fall 2000, will receive structured support from a
team of college support personnel
- By Spring 2001, 10 additional courses will be offered as online,
- By Fall 2001, 12-15 additional courses will be offered as online,
- By Fall 2001, a "shared" course will be developed for use by
full time and adjunct faculty; by Spring 2002, an additional 2 shared
courses will be available. Figures below are based on the assumption that 3
sections of each shared course can be offered each semester.
- A process will be developed for fostering online course development using
college resources and staff. The chart below indicates results over a