Information for Teaching Faculty

Teaching Questions

In addition to the questions and answers below, information regarding teaching and learning is available on the Teach Anywhere website (a website for NIC Instructors to support them with teaching and learning via digital formats).

Blended includes: Both Digital Delivery Unscheduled or Scheduled and In Person

Scheduled meeting times. Fixed Start/End Dates. Blended courses are partially held through in- class, on-campus learning and partially digital. In-class learning is scheduled, and the digital learning is done independently following instructor expectations and due dates.

Unscheduled, Digital Learning Delivery, Fixed Start/End Dates. Unscheduled courses only use digital formats. Student learning is done independently following an organized set of content and activities. Sometimes there may be an optional live online gathering for office hours, review sessions or group activities following instructor expectations and due dates.

Scheduled, Digital Learning Delivery, Fixed Start/End Dates. Scheduled courses only use digital formats. They include scheduled live online class times are at specific times according to the published schedule. Student learning follows instructor expectations and due dates.

If the learning outcomes (or equivalent) for your course require in-person manipulation of 3 dimensional objects (e.g., sculpture, welding, medical equipment) and cannot be achieved in any other way, you will be assigned a Blended designation. All other courses will be conducted digitally in either Unscheduled or Scheduled formats; you do have choice over whether to use U or S formats. If you choose S, video contact hours need to be conducted during your regularly assigned class time, except for office hours. Work with your department chair or director and dean to ensure that you have the correct designation.

No. In the interests of safety and clarity only the three digital options: Blended, Unscheduled and Scheduled will be available in Fall 2020 and Winter 2021.

The Unscheduled format does not allow for required video conferencing classes or sessions.  Drop-in video conference times, like regular office hours, are recommended.  You may also want to include voluntary study sessions and tutorials, mini lectures, or group work via video conference. In these cases, however, you will need to provide a recording or other alternative activity for students who are unable to attend your video conference sessions. 

If you are planning to record a session with live students, you should notify students and allow them the choice of turning off their video or turning off their display name.

Any video conference activity or other required attendance activity, other than office hours, must take place during your assigned meeting times.

No. Use the scheduled time as you see fit. Uses may include, for example, mini lectures, group work, or reading followed by discussion using a single video conference room or breakout rooms. If you want to show videos, it is advisable to give the video links to students, then close the video conference room after giving student a specific time to return and have them watch on their own.

There are many resources, ideas and information in the form of text, links, handouts, and videos provided on the Teach Anywhere page from the Centre for Teaching and Learning Innovation. You can also request a 1:1 consultation around your course design, assessment, assignments, engagement activities etc. If you require support with any tools and technologies, or have run into challenges or problems we can help you too. If you have a question or want to know more information about some facet of your teaching, we can also help you. For assistance please email helpdesk@nic.bc.ca

Reach out to the Centre for Teaching and Learning Innovation with any questions or a 1:1 consultation at helpdesk@nic.bc.ca.

No. Students have been registering under the existing Blended, Unscheduled and Scheduled delivery definitions since early June. You have considerable latitude to make changes within the delivery structure you have chosen to meet student needs, but you may not change the delivery mode.

Yes. Education Council approved a motion to allow (for this academic year) instructors to make changes to the student evaluation and assessment methods and weighting as long as you keep the approved learning outcomes and continue to abide by Policies 3-35 and 3-33. The motion is as follows:

THAT Education Council acknowledges and endorses that faculty have flexibility related to student evaluation and assessment methods (including weighting) as indicated in Authorized Course Descriptions (ACDs). This acknowledgment will be in effect as of March 16, 2020 for the remainder of the 2019-20 academic year and for the entire 2020-21 academic year, as appropriate to the subject area, and as approved by the relevant dean/director, and in compliance with North Island College policies.”

Policy 3-35 Course Outline requires that faculty provide students with evaluation methods and the weighting of those methods, at the beginning of class. This notification remains in effect as does Policy 3-33 Evaluation of Student Performance which states that there must be at least three separate evaluations, and that no single evaluation be greater than 40%.

Please see the Learning Technologies section of the Teach Anywhere website.

Classroom and Work Space Questions

Yes. Prior to September, classrooms will be pre-booked for scheduled digital instruction if indicated as needed by your dean’s office. However, the room booking may not be the same as the originally assigned timetabled space. Safety will be the top priority in determination of classroom assignments.  For programs without regularly assigned space, classroom allocation will be based on the most efficient use of available space to maximize options for all needs. For programs with regularly assigned space or priority access to space under normal (pre-COVID) procedures, classroom assignments will remain mostly unchanged. However, there may be exceptions to this to accommodate large face-to-face blended instruction by other divisions. 

We expect final classroom allocations to be available the week prior to term start. Anyone without an assigned classroom (e.g. previously indicated they will work from home but has changed their mind) may make a request through Scheduling, via their dean’s office.

Each digital teaching space will operate under a safety plan for its intended use, which will be finalized prior to term start. It is expected that this will require that faculty wipe down the surfaces they intend to use upon entry and wipe the surfaces used prior to exit. Additional hand sanitizing stations may also be provided, depending on the outcome of the safety assessment. Classrooms will be stocked with appropriate supplies and a standard end-of-day cleaning will happen, per other campus space, using the flip card method. Faculty are advised to bring their own white-board markers and eraser, if they intend to use the whiteboard.

Yes. Faculty who have an appointment will have a safe work space, according to work safe protocols. The deans’ and directors’ offices remain directly involved in the determination of workspace and will be working with the Office of the EVPA, the Director of Facilities and the Manager of Health & Safety to determine and confirm final work space allocation. After blended/scheduled classroom space has been assigned, the remaining classrooms will be brought into the pool of potential faculty workspace, if required, to secure a safe working environment for all.

We hope so, under specific safety protocols. Once all scheduled programs and faculty workspace are secured, we will assess options to open remaining classroom space for other uses. Considerations include open bookings for digital unscheduled faculty use, meeting space, etc.

Learning Resources Questions

Computers, web cameras and other peripherals and software

To take full advantage of the digital learning platforms supported by the College you will need access to a reasonably up to date computer, connection to the internet (preferably hard wired), a webcam and a headset microphone. Depending on what you teach you may also need a stylus and tablet or a tablet computer.

Please see your dean’s office if you require equipment. They will assess your needs and ascertain what is possible for supporting your teaching from home.

NIC has equipment for loan from the libraries in the form of GoPro Hero8 camera kits, tripods and lighting kits. See the Teach Anywhere page for details. If you are wanting assistance with creating instructional videos in a classroom we still have the ability to support you with repurposing some of the former ITV rooms for recording. See the related Teach Anywhere page with details.

NIC has equipment for loan from the libraries in the form of GoPro Hero8 camera kits, tripods and lighting kits. See the Teach Anywhere page for details.

Student Services and Learning Support Questions

Student Services is available in non face to face forms, including phone, skype, other video formats and email.  

  • There is an FAQ on the website https://www.nic.bc.ca/covid19/student-information/.
  • All information is also on the Student Services website https://www.nic.bc /student-services/.
  • We also have the Red Folder (icon on most NIC desktops or available in hard copy) with supports for students in distress or crisis.
  • A further list of supports by campus is available on the student and employee portals.

If any NIC employee is concerned about a student, Early Assist is also available for students to be connected with supports https://mynic.nic.bc.ca/early_assist/Pages/default.aspx

Contact Felicity.Blaiklock@nic.bc.ca or Dean.Martin@nic.bc.ca  for more information.

Yes.  The exam period is identified in the Key Dates

Below is an exam summary chart and format suggestions for reference.

Section Code

Exam Delivery Format

Resource

Invigilator

DLU (Unscheduled) & DLS (Scheduled)

Digital delivery

Centre for Teaching and Learning Innovation available for consult

Instructor

B (Blended)

Digital delivery

Centre for Teaching and Learning Innovation available for consult

Instructor

B (Blended)

Face-to-face exams can be scheduled if required for accreditation or other professional standards

Dean approval

Health & Safety plan required

Instructor

Digital Delivery Format Suggestions from Centre for Teaching and Learning Innovation

Digital delivery exam formats might include timed/open book exam, oral exam, performance assessment, video or audio demonstration, culminating project, portfolio, case study, annotated bibliography, learning log, concept map etc.

 

If you would like to learn more about evaluating students via digital means, how to ‘ungrade’ your course or adjust your evaluation methods and tools, reach out to Liesel.Knaack@nic.bc.ca, Director, Centre for Teaching and Learning Innovation, for a consultation.

 

Here are a few excellent resources from the University of Calgary: Five Principles for Meaningful Online Assessment and Alternative Online Assessment Ideas. Also check out Faculty Focus: Higher Education Teaching Strategies Newsletter with their 7 Assessment Challenges of Moving Your Course Online (and a Dozen+ Solutions) and the University of Reading’s, An A-Z of Assessment Methods.

All supports are available at a distance.  Some services will return to face-to-face in September, including computer lab and laptop loans. Librarians are available through Ask Away live chat and by emailing Librarians.  https://library.nic.bc.ca/home

There are emergency funds available for those who are in financial need and it can go towards technology.  Direct students who are in a financial situation that is impacting them at school to Educational Advising.

Generally, students will have access to space only at their scheduled classroom times, or through pre-scheduled studio/lab times as established and managed by their program. Exceptions include limited computer lab hours, offered as a student service throughout the term.

More Questions

If you have any questions with respect to NIC's COVID-19 Safety Plan or the creation of individual safety plans for your area, view the Information for All Employees page, or contact HealthandSafety@nic.bc.ca.

Additional resources