Online Teaching Certification

Teaching online requires specific knowledge, skills and abilities, that are similar, but unique in comparison with teaching in a traditional classroom. As such, it is imperative that faculty are effectively prepared to effectively engage with students in an online classroom.

Certification Program

Beginning in Fall 2017, a new online teaching certification program will be available. This replaces the former online teaching course facilitated by Becky Smith.

The new Online Teaching Certification program is comprised of three elements:

  1. A 5- week online course (Introduction to Online Teaching) where participants will experience being an online student and learn/apply the standards and expectations of online teaching at DSU.
  2. One or two semesters (dependent on need) of mentoring by a certified DSU faculty online course reviewer, where the online teaching competencies introduced in the online course will be reviewed and assessed (using the online teaching rubric – TBD).
  3. Participation in an annual online teaching forum as part of the DSU Teaching & Learning Conference (web conferencing will be available for anyone living outside of the local area or unable to attend in-person)

Official certification will be achieved when the first two elements are successfully completed.

Faculty will receive a DSU digital badge upon certification that can be posted on LinkedIn or other social media/network space. Other digital badges can also be earned successful completion of other professional development activities.


An initial pilot offering (10-15 faculty) is planned for Fall 2017 (October). Needed changes will be incorporated immediately following the initial pilot, followed by a second pilot offering in Spring 2018. Effective Summer 2018, the course will be available for any faculty assigned to teach online classes.

All faculty assigned to teach an online course(es) will be required to complete this certification program by Summer 2019. Any faculty who do not complete the training will be ineligible to teaching online at DSU.


The Introduction to Online Teaching course will be facilitated twice a semester, associated with each 7-week block, including in the summer. Each session will be organized into cohorts of up to 15 faculty.  Based upon demand/need, additional cohorts will be created.

Upon completion of the course, faculty will be enrolled into an Online Teaching Community in Canvas, where best practices will be showcased from other DSU faculty, expectations and standards will be reinforced, and ongoing dialogue facilitated based upon community needs and interests. Learning community groups will be formed around disciplines and/or topics.

Tracking Participation

Participation in the course and mentoring will be tracked and monitored by DDL, working with department heads to secure participation. All faculty assigned to teach an online course(s) will be required to complete this certification program by Summer 2019.