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Recruiting, Training, and Engaging Virtual Faculty via an Award-Winning Online Pedagogy Institute -- #NSWM30

Marquart, Matthea S.; Creswell Baez, Johanna; Chung, Rebecca; Ryan, Delia E.

Columbia University School of Social Work’s (CSSW) five-week Institute on Pedagogy and Technology for Online Courses prepares social work professionals to become excellent educators with our Online Campus, which offers a fully online MSW degree. 152 participants from 31 US states have passed in the first four cohorts, and they have led about 100 online courses so far. The award-winning Online Pedagogy Institute includes weekly live virtual class sessions and homework each week in our learning management system, and now offers CEUs. This session will share the details of this innovative training institute and the impact on talent management.

The Online Pedagogy Institute is for social workers who want to explore pedagogy and technology for online courses and trains social work professionals to become excellent educators with CSSW’s Online Campus. The institute is designed to be highly engaging, with homework that includes relevant readings, realistic scenarios, quizzes and flashcards to reinforce learning, and weekly live virtual class sessions and discussion forums that build community and enable participants to share their thoughts and expertise. Participants learn how to establish a virtual classroom environment that is welcoming and reflective of social work values, and plan interactive and engaging lessons for an Adobe Connect virtual classroom using web conferencing tools. Participants see the Instructor and Teaching Associate roles modeled, and think about ways they can develop their online teaching skills and personas at a high level of quality.

The institute was recognized with an 2018 International E-Learning Award from the International E-Learning Association and a 2019 International Distance Learning Award from the United States Distance Learning Association. The institute attracts a variety of social workers from across the country, creating a diverse and supportive community of professionals who care about providing the next generation of social workers with a high quality education. When the institute concludes, the top participants are recruited for positions as instructors and TAs.

As a case study, the institute has high ratings on feedback surveys from graduates. When asked “On a scale of one to ten, how would you rate the overall quality of this Institute?” the average score from our last two cohorts was 9.72. Comments from graduates have included, “The Institute set a golden standard for online education. The live sessions, along with the assignments, modeled holistic learning opportunities and effective teaching strategies. It was incredibly well-rounded and of high quality!”

Further, social justice, diversity, and inclusion themes are interwoven throughout the institute’s curriculum in line with social work values. Discussions are held on Universal Design for Learning to support accessibility for all learners and how to address current events, including those impacting social justice. The institute focuses on teaching and modeling pedagogy that is inclusive and accounts for diverse experiences, including have a range of diverse guest faculty discuss their innovative approaches to teaching online.

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More About This Work

Academic Units
Social Work
Published Here
June 7, 2019

Notes

Marquart, M., Creswell Báez, J., Chung, R., and Ryan, D. Recruiting, Training, and Engaging Virtual Faculty via an Award-Winning Online Pedagogy Institute. (2019, May 31). Poster presented at the Network for Social Work Management Conference, Loyola University, Chicago, IL.

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