online ed logo with computer, phone, and DVC logoOnline Teaching Resources

Online courses allow us to welcome more students whose work or family schedules are obstacles to taking face-to-face classes, or whose learning styles thrive in the digital environment.  Learn more about online teaching by clicking on any of the topics below:

Getting started

Instructor training (BEOI)

Under our UF contract, instructors who teach online need to take our district's Becoming an Effective Online Instructor (BEOI) course or submit evidence of equivalent training.  Learn more about online teaching trainings.

Technology needs
  • Chrome works well with Canvas and many instructional tech tools.  (In fact, some, like Proctorio, require a Chrome extension.)  You - and students! - can download the latest versions of popular browsers for free:
  • Most online instructors use a desktop or laptop with a webcam for hosting synchronous classes or online office hours.  Keep up-to-date with the latest version of Zoom.
  • Consider what technology your students will need to complete your online class - and communicate those needs with students.  Guide students without adequate technology to DVC's Student Technology Loan Requests and Technology Basics Guide
Welcome letter

Online instructors typically email students the week before classes begin to help students understand how to get started in their online course.  

Online syllabus

There are additional points to add into your syllabus when teaching online, such as any requirements for technology and/or software.  

Online office hours

Consider offering office hour(s) online via Zoom to replicate an on campus office hour.  Video chat with students, share your screen, or have students share their screen.

  • Include your office hour(s) day(s), time(s), and virtual location in easy-to-find places, like your syllabus and Canvas home page.  
  • Include instructions for how students will access your office hours. Consider sharing the DVC Online Technology Resources course with your students in your welcome letter, orientation module, and more!
  • Consider scheduling your Zoom office hours with a waiting room.  There may be times you want only one student at a time for quick one-on-one chats, and other times you want to meet with a group of students to review key concepts.  The waiting room allows you to control who enters your office space when.
  • “Check out the DVC Online Technology Resourceslogy Resources course for all information you might need to set your Zoom sessions up for success
Online attendance

See the Districtwide Guidance on Determining Online Attendance for instructions on tracking attendance in asynchronous or synchronous online classes.

Course design resources

Graphic Design and Style Guide

View DVC's Graphic Design and Style Guide, where you'll find materials to help design your Canvas course.  Examples include:

  • instructions and code for banners, buttons, boxes, and more
  • graphic icons 
  • home page templates
  • assignment templates
  • discussion board templates
Canvas Class Template

Best practices

Regular and effective contact

computer with three profile shadowsFederal and state law requires online courses include regular and effective contact - both between the instructor and students and among students. DVC Procedure 4003.02 defines our college policies and includes sample activities.

Camera-optional Recommendation (Zoom)

View the DE Committee's Camera-optional Recommendation to promote equitable virtual experiences and respect student concerns around privacy, safety, disability, and religious strictures.

Online Proctoring Recommendation

View the DE Committee's Online Proctoring Recommendation (COVID-19), endorsed by the Academic Senate.

Canvas Combined Sections Guidance

Due to complexities with FERPA compliance, a risk of lost course materials, and technology integration issues, instructors typically cannot combine sections on Canvas, except when courses are already cross-listed in the schedule and meet at the same times.  See the 4CD Guidance on Combining Canvas Shells for more. 

OER (Open Educational Resources)

With the cost of college and student debt rising, utilizing high-quality, free teaching tools is a great way to support your students. Learn more about OER and grant opportunities.

ZTC (Zero Textbook Cost) badge

ZTC logo, textbook with a crossed out dollar signIf you leverage open educational resources over paid publisher content, make sure students know by getting your course badged with the ZTC (Zero Textbook Cost) symbol in the online searchable schedule.  ZTC means there are no textbook or digital material costs for students. (However, other costs for physical materials such as a calculator, lab, or art supplies may be required.)  To get your class badged, follow the instructions in Get Your ZTC Badge.

CVC Course Design Rubric

Peer Online Mentorship Canvas Course CardIn Spring 2019, DVC's Academic Senate approved the CVC Course Design Rubric as a guide for best practices in online teaching.  Would you like to participate in a peer mentorship program to align your online course to the rubric?  Learn about DVC's Peer Online Mentorship Program (POMP) in Online Teaching Training.

DVC Online Equity Guidance

email symbol in envelopeReview (and give feedback!) on our 4CD Equity Rubric to learn about important strategies for creating equitable and inclusive online classes. 

Academic Integrity

checkmarkAll online classes offered within the California Community Colleges have a common entry point through the learning management system Canvas.  Even faculty who supplement their instruction through third-party resources must have students authenticate through Canvas to ensure academic integrity.

FERPA (student privacy)

bullseyeOnline instructors need to be aware of FERPA (Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act) concerns in online courses, particularly around combined sections and Zoom.  Get familiar with FERPA in the DVC FERPA Quick Guide or FERPA Basics video: