The Center for Instructional Technology provides resources to help instructors as they adapt their courses to online learning formats. Along with the resources below, the CIT is providing a full schedule of webinars and assistance is available via phone, email, or Zoom.

Tips for Instructors

Follow these best practices when transitioning your course.

Tips for Students

Follow these best practices to be successful while learning online.

Remote Work Tools

View the OIT website for tools and applications available to students, faculty and staff.

Technologies

View our technologies page to see tutorials on UA instructional technologies.



UA offers several tools and technologies that can assist with flexible instructional modes.

Review our tool comparison chart to find the tool that fits your need.


Publish and Update Course Information

First, if details or expectations in your course have changed, be sure those changes are reflected in your course syllabus.


Maintain Contact

Let your students know how you will communicate throughout the semester, and in case of any future changes. Make sure that students have your preferred contact information, and let them know when you will be checking and responding to email.

  • Send emails to students in your class with Blackboard.
    • Note: Blackboard Learn keeps no record of your email, whether you send or receive it. Any email you receive from Blackboard Learn appears in your external email inbox.
  • Send messages to students in your class with Blackboard.
    • Note: Course messages are internal to Blackboard. They can be viewed in your Blackboard messages inbox and outbox. They can’t be forwarded to email inboxes, but you can adjust your Text Message and Email Notification Settings
  • Post a Blackboard announcement.
  • Send emails to students in your class from your UA email client.
    • In myBama, click the Faculty tab, then click the Faculty & Advisors link in the Banner Self Service channel.
    • Click Detail Class List from the menu
    • In the Select Term window that appears, select the correct term and press Submit.
    • In the Select a CRN window that opens, select the class whose roster you’d like to email and press Submit.
    • The Class Roster will appear. Click the Email class link (or icon) at the bottom of the page.
    • This will open your default email application, create a new message and populate the BCC field with the email addresses for your class.
  • Create a group distribution list based on your students’ email contact information in your preferred email client.

Access Materials Remotely

By saving content in the cloud, you can be sure that you can access necessary materials from multiple locations and devices.

  • Backup critical teaching materials including lectures, assignments, instructions, quizzes, discussion topics, syllabus, schedule, and other important documents. Store using UA Box so materials can be accessed remotely, and shared if needed.
  • Have a backup plan for verifying DUO in case you cannot access your mobile device.
  • Encourage students to use UA Box to keep backup electronic copies of their assignments.
  • OneDrive is also available to faculty, staff, and students with Microsoft Office 365 Education.

Ensure Access

Accessible course content makes it easier for everyone to read and access your materials and can help improve overall quality and usability. Take these steps to ensure your online course materials are accessible to students of all abilities. Visit the Accessibility Resources page for more in-depth guidance on how to create accessible documents, images, audio, video, and web content or contact the technology accessibility team for help.

  • Blackboard Ally for LMS is available in all Blackboard courses.
  • Convey content in multiple ways; don’t just use images, color, video, or audio.
  • Follow these accessibility best practices when creating online course content: Blackboard Accessibility Checklist
  • Use the Microsoft Office Accessibility Checker to make sure your Word, PowerPoint, Excel, and other Office content is easy for people of all abilities to read and edit.
  • Use the Adobe Acrobat Pro Accessibility Checker to ensure your PDFs have searchable text, tags, and other features to support reading and navigation.
  • Ask for or create a captioned or transcribed version of any media you use.
  • Foster awareness of accessibility and accommodations.
    • If a student needs accommodations, refer them to the Office of Disability Services. Faculty and staff can contact the Department of Human Resources.
    • Texthelp offers a collection of Mac and PC desktop software, Google Chrome apps and extensions, and iOS and Android apps that support reading, writing, language learning and STEM subjects. Texthelp tools freely available to all UA students, faculty and staff include: Read&Write, a literacy support toolbar with supports for reading, writing, research, and studying; EquatIO, an application you can use to type, handwrite, or speak to create equations, formulas, and other math and chemistry expressions; and Snapverter, an easy to use add-on for Read&Write for Google Chrome and iOS app that transforms papers and files into readable PDF documents.
  • Access isn’t just about technology. These resources can help you make sure remote instruction is inclusive, equitable, and accessible.

Grades and Student Data

Be prepared with secure gradebook and content backups.


Meet Virtually

The University provides several options for meeting with your class virtually. See our Teaching and Presenting Tool Comparison Chart to compare!


Tests and Assignments

Tests and assignments can be completed online with the resources below. Try to be available during scheduled exam times so you can work with students if any issues come up.


Go Mobile

Mobile applications are available for many instructional technologies. In most cases, to use an app with your UA account you must choose the Single Sign-on (SSO) option or use your [mybamausername]@ua.edu or @crimson.ua.edu email address.

  • Students can download the Blackboard mobile app, and instructors can download the Blackboard Instructor mobile app.
  • Participants can download the Blackboard Collaborate mobile app.
  • Panopto offers Panopto Android and Panopto iOS apps to view recordings.
    • On the Sign In page, choose Change Site in the top right corner of the screen.
    • Set your Panopto site to alabama.hosted.panopto.com.
    • Sign in using Blackboard username and password.
  • Download the Box mobile app to have convenient access to content.
  • Download the Turnitin app, available to iOS only.

UA Health Info

Learn more about the University’s policies and response to COVID-19.

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