OITs Online Learning is Scheduled to Participate in New Faculty Orientation

{July} {29}, {2016}

by Rosalind Ong De Trevino at 10:31 AM in Campus Community, Events, News, Staff News


In August, the UTSA Office of Information Technology's (OIT) Online Learning department will be collaborating with UTSA's Office of the Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs to participate in the New Faculty Orientation. The orientation takes place August 15-19, 2016 and is designed to welcome new faculty and help them get started building their teaching portfolio and research programs.

On August 17, 2016 the new faculty will attend Technology Session: Using Blackboard Learn to Enhance Your Course, a course led by UTSA faculty and members of OIT Online Learning. The session will provide an overview of UTSA's Online Learning, show them how to get started with Blackboard Learn and introduce them to other digital learning resources available at UTSA.

"What's exciting about this event is that the technology session will be facilitated by faculty members who have experience with Blackboard and our instructional designers are going to share pedagogical best practices "expressed Marcela Ramirez Director of Online Learning.  

The technology session is broken down into three concurring breakout sessions.

  • Breakout session 1: Getting Started with Blackboard Learn, is designed for new users and the training covers how to access courses, use grade center, upload content and much more.
  • Breakout session 2: Engage and Assess Students Using Blackboard Learn Tools, will be for instructors who want to engage and assess students using tools in Blackboard. The session covers Discussion Board, Blog, Assignments, Tests and much more.
  • Breakout session 3: Teaching with Blackboard Learn, contains more advanced information and is designed for instructors with experience improving their face-to-face courses.

Knowing that faculty enter UTSA with different levels of technology experience, they will be given the option to decide what session they want to participate in and will be free to advance to different sessions at any time.

The purpose of the training session is not only to train but to provide faculty with the skills needed to engage students online as well. "Faculty are actively looking for new ways to effectively engage their students online through Blackboard" Ramirez stated, "this training will benefit new faculty because they will have a brief training of best practices using Blackboard, we will identify resources and tools available to them for successful adoption, and provide information about upcoming workshops for advanced topics in Online Learning. It will help faculty become more comfortable using Blackboard Learn and implement strategies to increase student engagement and improve their learning success."

The full technology session is arranged for two hours, each Breakout session is scheduled for 30-60 minutes of content keeping it short and simple still leaving the faculty highly energized. Any time remaining will focus on personalized learning for faculty that have questions or want to enhance their Blackboard skills.

Ramirez said, "I think this Blackboard orientation is very important because OIT will have the opportunity to build rapport with the new faculty coming in. They will walk away knowing who to contact when they need help with Blackboard and also learn about other resources related to their digital learning journey."  During the training session new faculty are also educated on UTSA online, how they can get help, and the upcoming training and faculty sessions in the fall. "A lot of new faculty might not know who to contact to design online and hybrid courses, and who can assist them with Blackboard Support Training. This is an opportunity to introduce them to UTSA Online and share with them resources and tools available at UTSA to help improve their teaching productivity."

Click on the link below for more information on the New Faculty Orientation


For information about Online Learning and faculty training sessions, please visit: