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Course Redesign Initiative

The course redesign initiative is scheduled to launch the summer of 2014.  These pages outline the project goals, outcomes, processes and implementation plan.

Goal/Outcome for the Project: 

Redesign high impact courses (high volume, low completion rates, etc.) to improve measurable learning outcomes, and to take advantage of and to integrate evidence-based research on best practices for teaching and learning.

Positive outcomes will result in:

  • Improved student learning (as demonstrated by lower percentages of D, F, W rates).
  • Increased course completion rates.
  • Improved retention.
  • Increased student and faculty satisfaction with new modes of instruction.

Course Design Institute: 

Offer resources, facilitation and training for faculty to design/redesign high impact courses, using best practices, data-informed research, and other proven models.  A hybrid delivery institute model will be utilized to complete this work for initial course implementation during the fall 2014 semester.  Some activities will be completed online/synchronously; other activities will be completed in face-to-face/synchronous sessions.

Faculty Participant Selection Process: 

Department heads and/or course coordinators will select the faculty team members and coordinate the process within their area.


  • All sections of the selected courses will be implemented using the course redesign.
  • All sections will report and post midterm grades.
  • Active learning strategies appropriate for the discipline and as evidenced in the literature will be incorporated into the course redesign.
  • Technology tools will be integrated to provide better student communication and feedback as well as increased effectiveness.

Resources and Services for the Process:

  • Background Information/Readings
  • Basic information on course redesign process and models
  • Imperative to complete course redesigns
  • Researched and tested models (and why they work)

Walker Center for Teaching & Learning (WCTL) personnel will act as process facilitators, provide research data, collect information, give feedback, etc., keep faculty groups on task within a timeframe and authorize payments based on deliverables.

Library faculty and IT personnel will also be available to support all course redesign teams.

Books and Electronic Resources:

  • Chickering, Arthur W. (Fall 1991).  Institutionalizing the seven principles and the faculty and institutional inventories. New Directions For Teaching And Learning. Jossey Bass Inc. 47.
  • Chickering, Arthur W. and Gamson, Zelda F. (March 1987). Seven principles for good practice In undergraduate education. [Online]. Available: [2002, September 16].
  • Fink, D. (2003).  Creating significant learning experiences:  An integrated approach to designing college courses.  San Francisco:  Jossey-Bass
  • The National Center for Academic Transformation. (n.d.).


  • Redesigned course syllabi and sample course schedules.
  • Training plan for all faculty teaching the course.
  • Assessment and data plan to measure course efficacy and student completion rates.
  • “Observation” plan outlined through FY15.
  • Implementation plan, including anticipated expenses for redesign.

Funding and Use of Funds: 

  • Faculty participating in the course design process will receive $1,000 for their work over the summer.
  • Limited funds are available to support the project through its first year of implementation (classroom technology, equipment and supplies to support applied, active, and experiential learning, etc.). 
  • Faculty participating in the assessment component of the project may be eligible for an additional stipend at the end of spring 2015.

Tentative Timeline

May 1, 2014

  • Courses identified and faculty groups selected.

May 5 - May 11, 2014

  • Background readings, faculty groups articulate, and determine course outcomes and select a model and/or strategies to implement and provide a rationale for those selections.

May 12 - May 19, 2014

  • Face-to-face meeting for all redesign faculty groups.

May 20 – June 23, 2014 (online)

  • Course redesign work (develop common syllabi, include active learning strategies/student interaction models and technology used/incorporated).  Most of this work will take place online.

June 24 – July 14, 2014 (online)

  • Faculty/adjunct training plan developed in conjunction with WCTL personnel.
  • Monitoring plans (across sections) outlined; milestones identified with actions to take to redirect, if necessary.
  • Formative assessment measures and action plan to intervene, if necessary.
  • Summative assessment measures and data outlined to gauge success.
  • “Observation” plan outlined through FY15.
  • Measurement plan outlined to determine if redesigned course is working.
  • Anticipated costs for redesign implementation outlined.
  • Necessary support resources needed identified (tutors, supplemental instruction, peer-led study groups, etc.)

July 28 – August 1, 2014 (online and face-to-face)

  • Faculty plans presented.
  • Updated course training for all faculty teaching redesigned courses.

Fall 2014

  • Implement redesigned courses.

September 2014

  • Redesigned courses "observations."

October 2014

  • Mid-term grades recorded/reported.
  • Mid-course review data.

December 2015

  • Final grades reported.
  • Data analysis on results.
  • Faculty debriefing and revisions determined.
  • (Re)training for all faculty who teach sections of redesigned courses (incorporating revisions).

January – February 2015

  • Spring 2015 implementation of revised redesigned courses.
  • Course "observations."

March 2015

  • Mid-term grades recorded/reported.
  • Mid-course review data.

April/May 2015

  • Final grades reported.
  • Data analysis on results.
  • Faculty debriefing and revisions determined.
  • (Re)training for all faculty who teach sections of redesigned courses (incorporating revisions).


Need additional information?  Contact Karen Adsit, 423-425-4026.