As we continue to prepare for emerging contingencies related to COVID-19, we have decided to move forward with a two-week test of the College’s online instructional and student support capacity beginning Monday, March 16, 2020. All faculty teaching in the Spring 2020 semester are expected to begin teaching all courses online effective Monday, March 16. Details follow below; an email announcement to students is also being sent today, and you will be Bcc’d.
Let me emphasize that MCNY has not had any reported positive cases of COVID-19. Through this test, we seek to help keep our community safe and support our students in the successful completion of the Spring semester as we continue to navigate uncertainty in the days ahead.
Please note that all academic and administrative offices of the College will remain open, and all staff are expected to report to work as scheduled. Of course, if you should feel ill, please contact your health professional and your supervisor, who will work with you and the Office of Human Resources.
As of now, this two-week online initiative is scheduled to end on Sunday, March 28. It may be extended as circumstances require. We will review the operation of this initiative on a daily basis, and we will survey all students the week of March 23 to gain insight into their experiences and support needs.
I. TESTING OUR ONLINE TEACHING AND LEARNING CAPACITY
Maintaining academic quality and student engagement is a primary requirement for all online courses. VPAA Crookendale has set minimum content expectations for each course shell. We ask all faculty to please log in to the Academic Affairs Portal within Moodle to review course content expectations immediately—and no later than 11:59 pm tonight—as we need to assure each faculty member’s ability to access the portal before we begin this process. The portal will be regularly updated with new content to assist you in maintaining quality and engagement in your online course.
For those faculty who are not sufficiently experienced in online teaching or who have had difficulty in navigating Moodle, we have scheduled four webinars this week and next led by E-Think, an award-winning and certified Moodle partner. The webinars will be offered beginning tomorrow, as follows:
- Thursday, March 12 at 1 pm and 6 pm
- Tuesday, March 17 at 1 pm and 6 pm
These webinars are open to all full-time and part-time faculty. We encourage everyone to attend, and we are requiring that faculty with limited Moodle experience attend one of these sessions. All adjunct faculty teaching in Spring 2020 who attend one of the four training sessions and complete a 3 question follow-up survey within Moodle will receive a one-time $50 stipend in the last payroll of the semester, April 10th. Please use this link to register for the Webinar of your choice: https://www.eventbrite.com/e/getting-started-with-mcny-moodle-tickets-99372082574?aff=Email
I have asked that all course shells be reviewed by a team led by the Coordinator of E-Learning next week to help us identify those faculty who are having trouble meeting the expectations of the online format. Please contact the Coordinator of E-Learning, Victor Kioulaphides, at firstname.lastname@example.org if you need additional support.
II. CAPACITY TESTING FOR PROVIDING REMOTE/TECHNOLOGY-ENHANCED ACADEMIC AND STUDENT SUPPORT
During this two-week window, we will also be testing our ability to provide remote academic and student support services to students. All students will be sent instructions on how to access Advising, Library, Learning Enhancement (Tutoring/Mentoring) and Career Development services, and they will be provided with contact information so that we can respond to questions and issues that may emerge.
Over the next several days, additional details will be forthcoming from the Office of Academic Affairs, the Office of Technology, the Office of Student Affairs, and other relevant campus offices as we all work together to assure the quality and continuity of learning during this period. Please feel free to contact VPAA Crookendale with any questions you may have.
Thank you for your commitment and dedication to our students.