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Saturday, December 2, 2023

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SDSU's Flexible Course Design Summer Institute prepared faculty for virtual instruction. SDSU's Flexible Course Design Summer Institute prepared faculty for virtual instruction.

Summer Institute for Flex Instruction Draws Plaudits

A national report suggests colleges and universities emulate SDSU’s preparation for teaching in virtual space.
By SDSU News Team

San Diego State University’s summer program to better prepare faculty for this fall’s mostly virtual instruction has earned a shout-out from a national nonprofit that promotes information technology in higher education.

EDUCAUSE spotlighted SDSU’s Flexible Course Design Summer Institute (Flex-CDI) as an exemplar for technology use in its national 2020 Student Technology Report.

Conducted by SDSU’s Instructional Technology Services (ITS) as a series of three-week sessions, Flex-CDI helped 894 faculty members enhance their skills and knowledge of teaching in the online environment. Drawing on partners from across campus, it included a mix of required and elective modules totaling 20 hours of instruction and tips to improve virtual teaching and master the information technology that has become part of the new shift in higher education.

“Seeing Flex-CDI recognized as an exemplar is both an honor and a tremendous asset to the higher education virtual instruction community,” said James Frazee, chief academic technology officer and associate vice president of learning technologies and environments at SDSU.

Frazee added: “It is our hope that by making the Flex-CDI modules, descriptions, and expectations available to the higher education community, we will help faculty, instructional designers, and staff optimize their time and resources so they can get down to the number one priority, which is educating and supporting students.”

The EDUCAUSE report is designed to help higher-education institutions assess student technology expectations and experiences. Its profile of Flex-CDI recommends the program as “actions you can take” and “peers you can connect with.”

Nearly 30 SDSU faculty and staff members from across campus participated in preparing and presenting the summer institute.

Frazee said hundreds of faculty have returned for additional support through the Virtual Faculty Instructional Technology Center, and via weekly workshops to further improve the quality of their virtual courses.

The full EDUCAUSE 2020 Student Technology Report: Supporting the Whole Student can be found here.