To bring faculty teaching online courses together to learn, share, and exchange ideas, ODU's Center for Learning and Teaching has launched a new initiative: the Online Faculty Learning Community (OFLC). To facilitate this initiative, CLT will coordinate monthly meetings and logistics, and will provide a wiki portal so that faculty/members can share resources and best practices.

Involved OFLC members (27 so far) have expressed their genuine interest in interacting, sharing resources, learning from each other, and perhaps even challenging their own teaching conceptions attitudes and beliefs about online learning. They are not only eager to identify solutions to common problems, but also to learn about pitfalls to avoid. (This is particularly true for faculty new to online teaching.) 

In addition, OFLC members report that they are willing to facilitate on-demand workshops and webinars on various online teaching and learning topics, and to provide feedback regarding institutional efforts to develop online degree programs (students evaluation of online courses).

To focus upcoming discussions and to continue the exchange of ideas, the OFLC group identified five key topics:

  1. Making the transition from face-to-face to online
  2. Building learning communities
  3. Developing course content
  4. Assessing online students
  5. Demoing new technologies

In addition to these themes, CLT has offered the following questions for reflection and debate:

  1. Do we need a theoretical framework to guide our discussion, supply us with common language, help us organize and filter our understanding of online teaching/learning, etc.?
  2. Do we need to reflect on our F2F teaching and learning conceptions and how they frame/influence our online teaching conceptions?
  3. How can we reflect, unpack, and reframe our online teaching/learning conceptions?
  4. Do we expect OFLC to lead us to alternative online/teaching conceptions?
  5. Do we need to approach our collective effort in a scholarly way, with possible presentations and publications? If yes, where do we start?
  6. Are we going, as faculty members, through a deliberate transitional phase from F2F to online?