Faculty Guide: Transition to Remote Instruction

In the event of an emergency disruption, it may be necessary to shift to fully online instruction. Below are steps instructors can take to create a continuity plan for classes.  Trainings and one-on-one support are available for instructors and students.

Create a continuity plan for your classes:

Create and communicate your continuity plan so that students understand how and when you will deliver instruction. All online instructions needs to include regular and substantive interaction, with opportunities for students to engage with the instructor, their peers, and the course material. 

Include the following information:

  • Technology: identify any technologies (like Canvas and Zoom) students will need during the emergency. Direct students to the Technology Loan Program and Online Tips and Tools webpages for technology support.
  • Communication: Indicate how and where you will communicate with students (ex. weekly announcements, emails) and how and where students can communicate with you. Include approximate response times so that students can proactively reach out.
  • Instructional Modality: clarify whether instruction will continue synchronously or asynchronously. 
    • If synchronously, days/times should not deviate from the published schedule. Ensure students know when and how to connect to virtual meetings.  Recording of synchronous sessions is recommended for students who may be impacted by the emergency. See DVC's Camera Guidance for camera-optional and recording recommendations.
    • If asynchronously, make sure your Canvas shell is published. Clarify when and how students should access learning materials and submit coursework.
  • Student Services: show students how to access online support such as basic needs and health and wellness services through the Support Hub.  

checkmarkView sample continuity communication plans for asynchronous and synchronous instruction. 

Communicate a course plan to acknowledge the emergency and (if necessary) share any changes:

  • Acknowledge the potential impact of the emergency on students and direct them to services online and on-campus, including the basic needs and health and wellness pages in the Support Hub.
  • Clarify how and where students can communicate with you and approximate response times so that students can be proactive and reach out.
  • If teaching synchronously, provide recordings of class activities so that students impacted by the emergency can continue course instruction.  See Camera Guidance for camera-optional and recording recommendations.

Training and Support

Many resources exist to support you during this transition:

Please note that during emergencies, our support staff experience a high volume of emails and calls.  To help direct your question to the right place: 

Digital Learning Lab
Network, InSite, and password support
  • For immediate help with Canvas:
    • Call the Canvas 24-7 Faculty Helpline: 833-221-7464
    • Access Canvas 24-7 Chat:
      1. Log into Canvas.
      2. Click Help in the global navigation menu.
      3. Click "Chat with Canvas Support (Faculty)."
  • For campus support, contact:
DE Team


How can Deans and Department Chairs help?
  • Encourage faculty to get training on Canvas, Zoom, and online instruction.
  • Have a plan to work with faculty who may face challenges moving their curriculum content online.  Contact DE Coordinator Anne Kingsley for support options: akingsley@dvc.edu
  • Upon any emergency closure, we recommend hosting an emergency department meeting via Zoom.
  • Have a plan for a substitute to step in if an instructor falls ill or is unable to continue instruction.