Help & Support – Creating Dual Delivery/Online Learning Activities and Content

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Staff: Online/Dual Delivery Teaching & Learning One Stop Shop

This page summarises all our key information relating to the creation of online teaching and learning materials, particularly during the ongoing COVID-19 situation. This page’s aim is to quickly help teaching staff access the most-requested support materials around online teaching, both technical and pedagogical.

If you cannot find what you’re wanting on this page, please search through our Guide Search Index and look at our Central COVID page. If you still cannot locate what you’re after, please Contact Us.

Page Contents

Pedagogical Assistance

Pedagogical Resources from 2021

Blogging – Ongoing Throughout 2021

We are continuing to publish reflective blog posts about what we (as an Institution) have learnt about teaching and learning during Coronavirus so far:

Subscribe to our team newsletter to keep up to date on the latest materials we are creating and sharing.

Webinars – Ongoing Throughout 2021

Throughout the 2021 summer holiday we will be offering webinars in collaboration with the Academic Practice Team on aspects of designing and delivering blended learning. These will include the following themes:

  • Inclusive learning and teaching
  • Blended learning module design
  • Weaving in-person and online learning activities
  • Student engagement in synchronous and asynchronous online learning
  • Time-Limited Take-Home Exams
  • Evaluating blended learning

Details will be shared via our team newsletter and our webinars page. If you would like to suggest any additional themes that you would like to see included, please let us know (

Blended Learning Design and Delivery Resource – July 2021

We are pleased to announce the launch of a new “Blended Learning Design and Delivery” resource for staff on the VLE. This is a revised version of the “Planning for Dual Delivery 2020-21” resources from 2020. This new resource refocuses support for the academic year 2020/21 towards ongoing design and delivery of integrated in-person and online teaching and learning.

  • The design sections of the site focus on combining in-person and online modes of delivery to best effect. They also offer support with planning assessment and evaluation of blended learning modules.
  • The teaching/facilitation section focuses on supporting inclusive learning communities and groups and designing and facilitating synchronous and asynchronous learning activities in-person and online.
  • Supported by examples, the site is targeted at module leaders and all staff who teach or support student learning, including Graduate Teaching Assistants (GTAs can request access to the Blended Learning Design and Delivery resource here).

The site contents can be accessed in sequence to support staff designing and delivering all aspects. Signposts to key sections of the site are also offered for module leaders looking for support with different elements of module design or for staff who teach who are looking for support with different types of teaching activity.

Flipped Learning Toolkit – March 2021

Our ‘Flipped Learning Toolki’ for staff was published in March 2021.

Flipped learning refers to the redesign of teaching and learning activities in ways that change the traditional relationship between what happens during ‘class’ or ‘contact’ time, and what happens outside of that time.

One of the most common applications of flipped learning is to invert the standard approach to classroom/’face-to-face’ learning such that teacher-led content that might have previously been delivered to students as live lectures are supplied to them in advance and staff-student contact time can consequently emphasise higher-order activities that encourage students to apply and analyse their learning.

Experiences of teaching and learning this year have led to increased interest in flipped learning and, responding to demand from Departments, we have produced a new Flipped Learning Toolkit in collaboration with the Academic Practice team.  This is designed to provide a concise, searchable introduction to the core principles of flipped learning, and how to approach introducing flipped learning to your module or programme of study.

“Tutoring Online” Guidance – January 2021

Our ‘Tutoring Online’ guidance for staff was published in January 2021. It focusses on approaches to supporting student activity/engagement with online materials (rather than designing the materials themselves).

The resource draws upon established approaches to online pedagogy supplemented by ideas from experienced online tutors at the University. You should find beneficial ideas for your own practice whether you are new or experienced in this form of teaching, and whether you are delivering a fully online programme or have temporarily moved into online teaching due to the pandemic.

It is a self-study resource, which should take approximately 4 hours to work through in total. The resource is currently accessed through Canvas (The Virtual Learning Environment used by the University’s fully online programmes). To request access, please add your details to this short form: Form – Request Access to “Tutoring Online” Materials.

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Pedagogical Resources from 2020

On December 2nd 2020 our team took part in the “Learning and teaching@York in the Coronavirus Pandemic: a conversation” event organised by the Learning and Teaching Forum, reflecting on how things have changed at UoY since the advent of the COVID pandemic. The recording and resources from the event are now available to view online here: Blog Post – Learning and teaching@York in the Coronavirus Pandemic.

Additionally, throughout 2020 our team ran a large number of webinars around creating online teaching activities and content in two stages:

  • Stage One – Various webinars on numerous topics presented earlier in Summer 2020, recordings of these sessions and related materials are here: PDLT Webinars 2020
  • Stage Two*An interrelated series of webinars was run later in Summer 2020 and were converted into a comprehensive online learning resources for staff: Preparing for Dual Delivery 2020/21 (GTAs can request access to this site here: Request Form – Access to Dual Delivery). This Dual Delivery site contains guidance on building purely online content as well as facilitating on-campus teaching. Areas in the site include:
    • Converting your teaching for online/dual delivery
    • Further activities for online learning
    • Sequencing and presenting content for online/dual delivery
    • Delivery and facilitation of learning in online/dual delivery
    • Socially Distanced Teaching on Campus.
    • *This resource has now been superceded by our Blended Learning Design and Delivery Resource.

Two academics from the Department of Chemistry have also written up papers about their experiences of both teaching and preparing to teach during COVID-19:

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Technical Assistance

Creating, Editing and Sharing Videos

For a “one stop shop” around creating, editing and sharing video content see our recently revamped “Using Panopto to Teach Remotely” guide.

This single guide links out to lots of related materials, covering common topics such as:

  • How do I create a video?
  • How can I edit a video and its captions*? (Remember: accurate captions are a legal requirement)
  • How can I share my video with someone else to work on the captions*?
  • Can I reuse the same videos with multiple cohorts?

*Need help with your captioning? As of February 2021 the University has a central pool of student captioners that can help with this work. Learn more here: Using the Central Captioning Pool to Hire and Book a Student Captioning Assistant.

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Creating and Running Virtual Synchronous Sessions

There are three webinar platforms that are supported and available here at York: Collaborate Ultra, Google Meet and Zoom. Collaborate Ultra and Zoom are those generally recommended for teaching. Learn more here:

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Creating and Running Virtual Asynchronous Activities

The Yorkshare VLE has a number of inbuilt tools that can facilitate asynchronous interaction (ie. wikis, journals, blogs and discussion forums), and also allows you to embed others from other providers. We also have guidance available on organising watch parties where students can view video content together.

  • VLE inbuilt interaction tools:
  • Other, embeddable tools:
    • Padlet – Padlets are virtual pin/noticeboards that can be used syncronously or asynchronously to preset, share or gather materials. They also come in numerous forms including canvas (good for mindmapping), timeline, maps and “backchannel” where users can use a stream of basic text chat with one another.
    • Xerte – Xerte allows you to create interactive and engaging content without needing to learn how to code. You can create interactive activities such as word matching

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Digital Accessibility

Digital accessibility (ie. making digital content more accessible to those with particular requirements or preferences) has always been important, but has grown in reach and implementation in recent years. Here at the University we have created many resources and run many training sessions to help staff increase the accessibility of their digital materials, and this hasn’t stopped with the advent of COVID-19; digital accessibility continues to be important. The following training materials and tools can assist you in creating more accessible materials.

It is key that you use accessibility-friendly formatting (eg. Heading styles, descriptive hyperlinks and alt text on images) and caption any video resources you are providing.

  • Training/Resources:
  • Tools:
    • Ally – Most University departments have elected to have a tool called “Blackboard Ally” enabled on their VLE site. Ally allows staff to identify potential accessibility issues at a glance, and allow students to download provided teaching materials in alternative formats. Staff guidance on Ally.
    • TextHelp – The University has installed Texthelp tools to make it easier to read, write and listen to text and maths. These tools can also help staff understand where content is not accessible and generate accessible alternatives. Information on TextHelp.
    • Simulators and other tools – We have various tools listed on our e-accessibility wiki’s “Resources” page.

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Reading Lists

Our team do not support the Reading List tool, however the following guidance may help:

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Creating Assessments

For COVID-specific guidance on assessment, see the “Assessment, examinations and student progress” page by the Academic Contingency Group. Please note in particular the guidance around online exams during COVID and how these should be handled.

The following guides are largely from pre-COVID and so are not COVID-specific, but are still generally helpful to “get going” with electronic forms of assignment:

Electronically Submitted Essays/PowerPoints/PDFs or Similar

Formative Tests/Quizzes

  • Formative tests/quizzes can be run on the VLE however there are caveats that must be heeded as intensive, simultaneously usage of the VLE’s test engine can cause issues with VLE stability. Please contact us to discuss formative tests/quizzes with cohorts larger than 10 students, particularly if you envisage your students taking the test synchronously.
  • Summative tests should not be run on the VLE without the PDLT being contacted well in advance for consultation.

Live/Recorded Video Presentations

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General VLE Site Content Creation & Administration

As well as the content already mentioned on this page, we have many further resources on creating VLE site content and generally administrating and managing your site. We will not re-link of that here on the assumption that you are already relatively familiar with the system, but you can visit our Staff Technical Help Page for further general guidance on our toolset should you want it. Instead, this section contains links to specific guides we’ve seen in high demand during Autumn Term 2020.

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Student Experience/Assistance

This section contains links to help materials for your students, and also links to help materials for staff on how they can view their online content as students.

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Staff and Student Induction Materials

Student Induction Materials

Staff Induction Materials

  • A new “Explore!” tab should now be visible in the top right of all Yorkshare VLE pages for staff and students, which links through to many induction-related resources
  • Our “e-Learning at York for New Staff” blog post contains information for new staff on our key systems: the Yorkshare VLE, Replay (aka Panopto), Collaborate, Padlet and more.

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