Professional Development Course Descriptions
The one-on-one support that educators need, when they need it, combined with the structure that allows new skills and competencies to be recognized and rewarded
Learning Management Systems Basics
Learning management systems are examined in this program. Participants will learn about the basic functionalities of learning management systems that include navigation, facilitation, data analytics, class support features, building content, applications, and networks. Various learning management systems will be introduced, including the unique advantages or features within each system. Introductory
Introduction to Blended Learning
This program examines various blended learning instructional models. Participants will determine the best approach to implementing blended learning in their classrooms. The program reviews the Quality Standards for Online and Blended Learning from the International Association of K-12 Online Learning (iNACOL). Participants will also explore various synchronous tools for virtual instruction, student engagement, and support. Introductory
Instructional Best Practices in Blended Learning
Best instructional practices and strategies in blended learning are the focus of this program with the end goal of implementing a blended learning model (Flipped Model). Participants will also explore instructional differences and similarities between being a content expert and an expert facilitator. In addition, participants will review, respond, design, and implement the following in a blended setting: 1. Quality standards in online and blended learning; 2. Instructional strategies and tools that build student engagement and support in blended settings; 3. Instructional strategies that build self-directed, autonomous learners; and 4. Synchronous and asynchronous tools for virtual instruction in a blended setting.
Creating Digital Content for Blended Learning
This program prepares instructors for creating digital content for the blended classroom. Participants will learn how to digitize content they currently use in their instruction to a learning management system that supports blended learning while adhering to best practices in digital course design. As part of the course alignment process, participants will review the National Standards of Quality for Online Courses by the International Association for K-12 Online Learning (iNACOL) to ensure their courses follow guidelines for digital course content, instructional design, technology, student assessment, and content management.
Participants in this program will be provided with the opportunity to study aspects of blended learning models with a focus on Rotation Models. Participants will examine elements of Station Rotation, Lab Rotation, Flipped Classroom, and Individual Rotation models, determining which is most beneficial to their blended classroom. Strategies include content development and student engagement.
The Flipped Classroom
Flipped classrooms are the focus of this program. Participants will examine elements of a flipped classroom and how this blended learning model engages students through myriad strategies for flipping specific content and activities. By the end of the program, participants will create a flipped lesson and accompanying materials for supporting the successful implementation of a flipped classroom in their blended setting.
Intermediate & Content-Specific Courses
Differentiation Strategies in a Blended Environment
Differentiation in a blended or online setting is explored in this program. Topics include elements and strategies of differentiated instruction in a blended classroom in terms of content, process, product, environment, and assessment. Participants will apply strategies to blended learning models.
Personalized Learning: Teacher Data Dashboards
Through this program, participants will examine the function of the data dashboard in learning management systems. Participants will learn how to access, understand, analyze, and apply the data from student performance, integrating it into their daily instruction. They will also examine strategies for utilizing data to personalize learning for each student.
Inquiry in Blended Learning
This course provides educators with the opportunity to explore elements and models of inquiry-based learning. Participants will reflect on their own instructional practice, examining existing units of study or planning new ones that integrate active learning strategies in their blended classrooms through posing challenge questions, problems, or scenarios in order to develop an authentic project-based learning environment.
Instructional Best Practices in OER
This course will introduce participants to the world of Open Educational Resources, including the basics of identifying and using resources as well as more advanced skills of customizing and personalizing them. Participants will focus on knowing when to use OER, locating quality OER materials, and remixing to create new materials based on student needs. They will design a course map/plan and identify gaps. Throughout the course, participants will engage with OER materials, interact with classmates to share learning and insights, and reflect on their learning experience. By the end of the course, participants will produce a hands-on, immediately applicable project.
Instructional Best Practices for Librarians
This program is designed for school librarians who are looking to understand new roles and expanded library services required to meet the needs of blended and online learners. Topics include: 1. Blended librarianship and the Library Learning Commons models; 2. Essential questions to ask before developing and/or expanding library spaces (physical/online); 3. Assessing learning community stakeholder needs; 4. Determining essential resources and services needed when organizing the online library space; and 5. Developing flipped information fluency instruction.
Instructional Best Practices for Core/ Electives: Math, Science, English, Social Studies, Special Education, and Health/PE
This series of programs provides participants with planning and development strategies, teaching strategies and tools, and assessment and evaluation strategies for the following content areas: math, science, English, social studies, special education, and health/PE.
Engaging Students Using Gamification
Participants in this program will investigate best practices for implementing gamification in their blended or online classroom. Topics for this program include game theory, game elements, and gaming. Participants will learn basic game theory, explore elements of gaming that can be added to existing courses, and apply the characteristics of a successful gamified course.
Project-Based Learning in a Blended Environment
Project-based learning in a blended classroom is introduced through this program. Participants will identify elements that constitute project-based activities based on research findings, determining the most effective instructional practices. Additionally, through instructional videos, discussion threads, and myriad resources and tools, participants will learn how to develop and assess project-based activities relevant to their content.
Nurturing Autonomous Learners
Considering their personal and institutional context, participants in this course will build and reinforce the strategies that ensure autonomous learning skill development in their students. Topics include an overview of the fundamental reasons to develop autonomous learning skills, the scaffolding and progression from instructed education to autonomous learning, and the use of strategies that reinforce students’ autonomy.
Digital Tools for Blended Learning
Participants in this program will learn how to build a technology toolbox through an introduction to digital tools for blended and online classrooms. Those enrolled will identify the 4Cs of 21st-Century Skills while discovering digital tools/technology to bring to their individual settings. Activities are based on research findings, determining the most effective tools to utilize. Through instructional videos, discussion threads, and hands-on exploration, participants will learn how to incorporate tools relevant to their content.
Online Course Development (12-week, 60-hour course; 30 facilitated hours)
This program addresses digital course development. Participants will learn best practices in online course design that are aligned with Common Core and National Standards of Quality for Online Courses by the International Association for K--12 Online Learning (iNACOL). Advanced
Personalized Learning Series
Introduction to Personalized Learning
Participants in this program will become familiar with the process of implementing a personalized learning model in their classroom through dynamic engagement in student-centered activities from profile and pathway building to voice and choice of resources and assessments. Educators will learn how to master innovative strategies through modeling and reflective practice.
Practicing Personalized Learning in a Competency-based Classroom
Implementing a personalized model that supports competency-based learning is the focus of this program. Participants will explore aspects of successful integration of personalized learning that include assessment design and management, technology and analog options, student-owned data and data-driven pathways, and interventions.
Student Choice and Agency
This program is a deeper dive into the personalized learning pedagogy. Participants will actively engage in developing content for immediate use in their classroom. They will build student profiles and diagnostic assessments, learn how to use data to guide students in identifying learning targets and writing objectives and goals, and design multiple assessments for various mastery levels. Student support structures and management of independent learning time are additional focuses of study.
Introducing Blended Learning to Your School or District
Aimed at educational leaders as they begin to design and implement digital learning in their school or district, this program provides an overview of blended learning basics as well as a deep dive into sustainable and disruptive models. Leadership coaching strategies are integrated into the program, making it a perfect first step for administrators and emerging school leaders.
Supporting Blended Learning in Your School or District
This program is designed to help educational leaders identify the supports needed for their staff, students and community as they begin implementation of blended learning in their school or district. The class offers guided practice with tools and strategies for both individual and schoolwide use. Topics include looking at the iNACOL Blended Learning Competencies for Teachers, supporting students in their new role as 21st-century learners and engaging with stakeholders to build community.