Emergency Online Faculty Support

Alfred University has decided to suspend on-campus activities in response to the COVID-19 outbreak. All courses will be taught online or in a remote format for the remainder of the spring semester. During this emergency, the course development process is different than when faculty develop online courses for Allen Term and Summer School. Assistance and resources are available.

Emergency Teaching Plans

To provide guidance for faculty, there are four Emergency Teaching Plans available. Each plan is based on the level of Canvas experience of the instructor. Each plan contains relevant Canvas instructions and guidelines. A video of the Emergency Teaching Plan Presentation is available for those who were unable to attend one of the information sessions.

Tools Supported by Information Technology Services (ITS)

If AU suspends campus instruction, faculty should use Canvas to teach their courses. If a video conferencing option (outside of Canvas) is needed, ITS recommends Skype for Business or Microsoft Teams. Both tools are fully supported by ITS, and are provided by our Office365 agreement.

Who to Ask for Help

This guide is intended to help faculty identify who they should contact with questions related to transitioning their courses into an online/ remote format during the COVID-19 outbreak.

ITS Helpdesk

  • Skype for Business/ Microsoft Teams/ Big Blue Button (within Canvas)
  • Office 365
  • Software licensing/ access for students
  • Equipment
  • General technology concerns (email, logging into Canvas, WIFI)

Meghanne Freivald, Online Learning Coordinator

  • Course Design Guidance
  • General and advanced Canvas tasks related to content and assignments
  • Canvas tasks requiring administrator intervention
  • Accessibility/ universal design guidelines for course materials

AU’s Librarians

  • Copyright guidance/ what to do if students do not have their books
  • General Canvas tasks related to content and assignments
  • Incorporating library resources
  • Access issues/questions regarding Kanopy

The Center for Academic Success

  • Disability accommodations in online courses
  • Accessibility/ universal design guidelines for course materials

Dan Hausman, Learning Spaces Technology Specialist

  • Ensemble Streaming
  • Ensemble Anthem (Video/ Screen Capture)
  • Skype for Business


Maintaining Equity and Inclusion in Virtual Learning Environments, San Diego State University

Tools for Inclusive Teaching, USC Rossier School of Education

Inclusive Online Teaching, Appalachian State University

Inclusion, Equity, and Access While Teaching Remotely, Rice University Center for Teaching Excellence

Identifying and Responding to Bias Incidents, Teaching Tolerance

Live Sessions
  • Canvas Conferences, Skype for Business
  • Used to recreate live classroom setting
  • Dependent on reliable internet connection of both student and teacher
  • Can be recorded (Canvas Conferences stored for up to 14 days)
Recorded Sessions/Instruction
  • Ensemble Anthem videos, placed into Canvas
  • Used to provide frequent personal instruction videos that will be available to the student through streaming
  • Enable student response/questions through Canvas Discussions
  • Allows teacher to record and provide feedback on students’ individual work (for example: Teacher is able to screencast students artwork and provide feedback using pointer/highlighting tools in Ensemble Anthem)
Pre-Recorded Instruction
  • Ensemble Anthem videos, placed into Canvas
  • Used to provide smaller scale instruction videos for topics needing to be frequently referenced (Warm-ups, demonstrations, common practices)
Online Office Hours/Virtual Classroom
  • Canvas Conferences, Discussions, Conversations, Chat, or Email
  • Allow designated meeting times or open-ended “drop-in” hours
Modules/Files in Canvas
  • For posting class materials (i.e. documents, readings, instructional/educational videos, scanned sheet music, PowerPoints containing Art images)