Online Teaching Resources

These tools can help you ensure high quality online and hybrid courses.

eLearning Miami University - Oxford Course Checklist

Use  eLearning Miami University—Oxford Course Checklist if you want to make sure you include the essential elements for students in your course.

Miami University Library

Partner with your subject matter librarian from Miami University Library! The librarian should be a part of your course to assist you with selecting appropriate learning resources for your course.  The librarian is there to support you and your students meet the learning objectives.  Take time today to reach out to your librarian!

Quality Matters (QM)

Is a faculty-centered, peer review process that is designed to certify the quality of online courses and online components. Quality Matters (QM) has received national recognition for its peer-based approach to quality assurance and continuous improvement in online education. (Source:

Miami University College of Arts and Science Guidelines for Teaching Online

Miami University College of Arts and Science Guidelines for Teaching Online: Best Practices & Quality Standards promote optimal standards and best practices as you develop and manage partially or fully online courses. The guidelines were constructed by a Miami University Faculty Learning Community (FLC) that reviewed a wide range of established quality standards documents, studied recent scholarship on teaching online, and drew from personal experiences.  These guidelines focus on the design and pedagogy of teaching online and are designed for faculty at Miami University where we already have high standards and well-established best practices that instructors follow in traditional face-to-face teaching at Miami.

Course Design using Backward Design

Course Design using Backward Design starts with your learning outcomes and build your course with the end result as your focus.  How are you going to ensure your students are learning what you say they are learning?

Using Universal Design to Support All Online Students

Using Universal Design to Support All Online StudentsIf you have students with disabilities who need more assistance, please refer them to Student Disability Services.


The rules and laws for face-to-face courses are different than for online courses! Review these resources for information.


Designing accessible courses benefits all students including students with disabilities, second-language learners, and anyone who learns best through different modalities.

UDOIT Guidlines for Accessibility in Canvas

Access MU

Access MU is committed to providing equal opportunities for all individuals and strives to ensure that all instructional materials are fully accessible to users with learning and/or physical disabilities. As a faculty you may need guidance on how to accomplish accessibility. To get started on making your course content accessible, follow these basic tips. 

  • Provide alternative text (ALT text) for images and charts.
  • Avoid communicating information only by the use of color.
  • Use formatted lists (bulleted or numbered).
  • Use proper heading styles.
  • Use descriptive links - avoid using the entire URL or “click here.”
  • Provide closed captioning for all videos.

Download an APA-formatted Word template.

For more information and support, contact Access MU.

Assessing Student Learning - Face-to-Face, Hybrid, and Online

Assessing student learning and providing feedback are vital steps in the learning process. Assessments should be aligned with measurable learning outcomes, so that the assessments evaluates whether or not the students learned what you said they would in the outcome.  The language of the learning outcome will guide you to the proper assessment type. The assessment method is important to identify areas where students need improvement, have difficulty grasping concepts, or do not understand instructions. Use low-stakes assessment and feedback throughout your course for formative assessment. Use cumulative assessments for summative assessment.

  • Using many lower-stakes assessments rather than a few high-stakes assessments reduces the motivation for cheating.
  • Use both formative and summative assessment; learn how from the Carnegie Mellon overview of Formative vs Summative Assessment.
  • A variety of assessment approaches will enhance learning, and using assessments and learning activities that are meaningful and realistic also enhances motivation.
  • Authentic assessment—where students solve applied, real-world, complex problems—supports student engagement, as well as the ability to apply concepts after the class ends. Learn more from Indiana University’s primer on Authentic Assessment.
    • Authentic assessment requires scaffolding, because if students could resolve real-world problems on their own, they would not be taking the course. Scaffolding refers to giving students support to develop their skills along the way to mastering a larger concept.
  • Learn how to design assessments that reflect mastery of learning outcomes from the Carnegie Mellon website Align Assessments with Objectives.
  • Use rubrics and the Canvas Speedgrader for fast, easy and reliable assessment and feedback on open-ended assessments such as projects, case analyses and papers. Rubrics also provide student with a clear understanding of what is required to be successful. Examples of rubrics can be found online.  Carnegie Mellon's Eberly Center for Teaching Excellence & Educational Innovation site Grading and Performance Rubrics is a great resource with examples of rubrics for a variety of assignments.
  • Don’t hesitate to ask students to reflect on their learning in a reflection activity near the end of the course. This can crystalize learning and support future use.
  • For additional ideas about assessment, read Rochester Institute of Technology’s guidance on Assessing Student Learning Outcomes in an Online Environment, and Miami’s Center for Teaching Excellence website.

Learning Outcomes

All courses should begin with specifying what students should learn from them. The learning outcomes (also known as learning objectives) are statements that describe what students should learn, phrased as measurable goals. Learn the basics from Miami’s Center for Teaching Excellence Writing Student Learning Outcomes [Insert link to]

  • Measurable learning outcomes to provide a pathway for identifying appropriate assessment methods, scaffolding activities for higher order thinking, and selection of appropriate learning resources. To learn more go to Creating Learning Outcomes by Florida State University's Office of Distance Learning.
  • Use action verbs to reflect different cognitive skill at different levels. The chart of verbs from the University of North Carolina's Center for Teaching and Learning will help you write measurable learning outcomes and ensure rigor in your course.
  • Learn more about the levels of cognitive skills from Bloom’s Taxonomy of Educational Objectives from the University of North Carolina’s Center for Teaching and Learning. 

Using Analytics and Objectives to Improve Your Course

  • Course Analytics will show you activity, assignment submissions, grades, and students. Course statistics also helps you identify which students are not participating or have started to fall behind.
  • Course Statistics provide information on which activities are engaging students. Use course statistics to identify what activities should be improved or modified.

ELM Tips & Tricks

For more information on how eLearning can help you review the workshop descriptions.

Learn more about how you can use Canvas features and tools by searching the Canvas Guides.

Atomic Learning resources are available in the IT Help knowledge base or log in with your Miami credentials at